Saturday, November 27, 2004

At present we have a host of small Mojave trees (Acaia Greggii, Cercidum Floridum, and Acaia Smallii) growing in our living room in a custom seed propagation unit made specifically for the GardenLAb Experiment at Art Center in Pasadena. When the GardenLAb ended, the units came here and the growing continued. Along with an array of grasses and annuals, a veritable jungle is growing just feet from the dining room table.

Here's what things look like:

When these guys get big enough, they'll be transported to their new home in the Mojave Desert. Below is Deena's map from her exhibition at LAX. We've shown this map to the trees to give them an idea as to where they'll be going. They're not yet ready to leave
the warmth of grow light for the harsh realities of the Mojave.


On Saturday the 13th of 2004, Deena and I headed out to the site to do some new plantings and to observe any new post-rain growth. With approximately 70 gallons of water and 7 new plant additions, we arrived around 12:00p.m. Lots of fluffy clouds in the sky and a slight breeze. A nice 70 degrees. Perfect working weather.

Bernard and Laura met us at the site after a delaying filling station snafu. When surveying the impact of recent rainfall, we found no water in the cistern even though a water line was evident in the silt trap. Seems the flows were making it through the French Drain, but not making it to Garden #2.

Bernard and Deena started making ‘root-cages’ with the chicken wire we brought along. These devices would be used to prevent burroughing animals from getting to the root-ball of soon-to-be planted.

I moved around the site and documented the revived vegetation and animal damage.

We then made our way into Garden #2 where we planted four Ephedra (Mormon Tea) at the second level. Again we used DriWater capsules in the planting process.

Finishing with Garden #2, we planted a 5-gallon Prosopis Pubescence in the outer ring around Garden #4. And then we moved on to the two Olneya Tesotas that we placed in the outer ring around Garden #3.

Some of the Prosopis Pubescence trees are still struggling. And two of the Cercidum Floridum have doubled in size since the Jan. 03 planting, though all of the rest did not make it.

Th Larrea tridentatas (creosotes) are doing quite well. Green as ever, they are, even with an exhausted supply of DriWater.

We finished up in Garden #6, replenishing DriWater. Things we were unsure about during the summer months (that had gone dormant) had sprung back to life. The Atriplex polycarpa were doing OK, so we filled their DriWater supply as our daylight was dwindling.

After we finished up at the site, Bernard and Laura headed back to L.A., while Deena and I headed to the Barstow Denny’s to meet with Jim and Julianne. We talked politics for approximately 3 hours, sometimes pausing to eat our food.

In the seed propagation units in Altadena, we are still seeing significant growth. Acaia Greggii, Cercidum Floridum, and Acaia Smallii are all thriving under the grow lights. The ones in the units are now twice the size of those living outside in our backyard (that had lived in the Pasadena Art Center for six weeks). Deena is still comparing how both sets are faring.


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