Orchid Dreams


five buds bloomed my orchid this year

I have lived in Los Angeles for 8 years 7 months, and counting. I’m going to guess that I have been trying to make an orchid part of my decor for approximately 8 years 1 month. I have killed exactly 7 of them to date, but this time I did it! I have successfully nurtured this orchid plant for close to one year now, and not only is it alive, it is blooming!


my happy, healthy orchid

You’ll have to forgive my excitement. After several people telling me it’s easy to care for orchids, and then me subsequently killing them, this is something I never thought I could accomplish. And much to my chagrin, itactually was pretty easy!… With a couple of new conditions in play:

1) I have this awesome gardening window in my new house. It does not get direct sunlight, but that’s great because orchids don’t like direct sunlight. The window is shaded by a huge ficus tree, so it gets plenty of light but no harsh direct sun rays.


some of the new roots that developed in the past couple months

2) The gardening window is over the kitchen sink. What does this have to do with anything, you may ask? Well, every time I do the dishes, I am reminded to check it to see if it need watering. And I just water it in the sink when it does. Piece of cake!


the base of the stalk that grew this year

3) This particular orchid is a Phalaenopsis, which likes to get completely dry between watering. So it was always easy for me to tell when it was time to water it again. Water it when the bark in the pot feels dry.


Phalaenopsis with red lips

So to encourage those of you who might have felt like me, and think that you can’t take care of an orchid, I’m here to tell you that you can! Here are a couple links that will make it easy:


five blossoms

Have you tried to maintain an orchid? Did you find it easy or difficult?

A Beautiful Day at the Arboretum


an unsuspecting entrance to the beautiful grounds at the LA County Arboretum

Last Friday a friend and I took advantage of a beautiful, warm and sunny day by spending it outside at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden. What can I say about this place, except that it is a gorgeous reprieve from the sprawl that surrounds it! What a fantastic way to remind yourself of all the amazing vegetation in the world.

The Arboretum is sectioned off into different areas of vegetation, including Africa, Australia, and their Prehistoric Forest. They even have a pond, a lake, and a waterfall! They also have some smaller greenhouses to cultivate the more tropical plants, like orchids, that need a lot of humidity since we don’t have a whole lot of that here in Southern California.

Here are some of my favorite things about the Arboretum.


an orchid trio (Tropical Greenhouse)


orchids much like mine at home (Tropical Greenhouse)


beautiful colors speckling the greenhouse (Tropical Greenhouse)


looking up through the eucalyptus (Australia)


glass inlays along Serpent Trail (Australia)


a little taste of down under (Australia)


Tule Pond


I want to have story time under this tree!


Canadian Geese remind me of being back in the Northeast


another view through the trees


The magnolias are blooming! (Meadowbrook)


And so are the cherry blossoms! (Meadowbrook)


My favorite part of the day was discovering the waterfall behind the magnolias and cherry blossoms!


makes me feel like I might be in Hawaii


a second baby waterfall next to the bigger one


the view from above the waterfall (Tallac Knoll)


This could be the best reading spot in the whole place! (Tallac Knoll)


a big old Cypress tree


Queen Anne Cottage (1885) – You can’t go inside, but you can peak into the windows to see the period accurate furnished interiors!


lots of very big, very old cacti along the main walkway