My time at Stanford is unfortunately coming to an end, so I’ve been trying to experience as much as I can as my internship concludes. The past week or so has been full of excitement, from sowing seeds for my favorite type of flower to attempting to see whales off the Headlands as they pass through the area.
Last week, I sowed trays of sunflower seeds for Big Rivers Nurseries. The gardener, Clay, has an assortment of exotic varieties, from burgundy and black Moulin Rouge to small and buttercup yellow Teddy Bears. Watching seeds that I sow germinate is such a fulfilling feeling, and I was amazed at the short germination time of the sunflowers. As he described to me, they are hardy seeds that sprout out of the soil speedily. I was able to do more trays today while simultaneously seeing last week’s seeds break out from their hard black and white shells.
One of my other favorite plants, those of the succulent family, were also propagated the past few days. I learned how to break small succulents off from their larger parents and plant them in soil to root and grow. Also hardy, they fare better with less watering and less fuss, making them an incredibly beautiful yet easy to manage landscape or potted plant for the home gardener. With vivid colors, eclectic shapes and sizes, no two succulents are quite alike, yet they are all lovable! Walk around the grounds and greenhouse of Big River Nurseries, and I guarantee they will bring a smile to your face.
Although I missed the whale festival this past weekend and the weather was not particularly whale-watchable, I tried to spot some on a sunny day. Although I was unsuccessful, the sights of the ocean off the Mendocino coast moved me—worthwhile even without the whales!
This article was written by Sid Garza-Hillman