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[whitespace] Polly Joseph
Photograph by George Sakkestad

Feel the Urn: Pottery Planet's Polly Joseph gets into her work.

Get Dirty

Plants, pots and more for the garden

By Kelly Luker

ADMITTEDLY, SPRINGTIME is when our hearts race at the thought of rolling around in the mud with a few six-packs of annuals. However, to limit our gardening appreciation to the season of growth is like enjoying our kids only until they reach puberty.

To every season, as they sort of said, there is a thing--especially in the wondrous world of gardens. They're pretty, they feed us--but why stop there? Think sanctuary, my green-thumbed friends. A place to meditate, a place to hang up the hoe and just hang out. But sanctuaries are made, not born.

Since the most important ingredient in tranquillity is running water, the first stop for exterior design is Home Scapes. Located in downtown Soquel, Home Scapes offers a treasure trove of all things related to water that soothingly gurgles and bubbles. There is a selection of more than 100 fountains to choose from, as well as everything needed to build your own pond. First-timers might want to begin with a hanging wall-fountain, an inexpensive and low-maintenance way to keep the negative ions flowing. The more adventurous can pick up all the pond paraphernalia--liner, books, algae control--then add elbow grease to create their own body of water.

While bubbling fountains and water lily-studded ponds go far to calm the troubled spirit, don't forget the herbs. Planting lavender, sage, rosemary and chamomile at each turn in the path will offer healing through the olfactory senses. For a huge selection of herbs to plant, try Florabunda. Separated by their medicinal and culinary properties, the more than 20 species of herbs range in price from a buck or two on up. While there, consider picking up a gazing ball or stepping stones to continue the exterior design.

A garden without roses? No way! Head out to Corralitos for your Hybrid Teas and Grandifloras at Aladdin Nursery. There, one can find the requisite annuals and perennials, climbing vines and citrus trees too, but Aladdin has a nice selection of the flower that has inspired more poetry than any other.

Sounds counterintuitive, but nowadays garden plants don't necessarily go in the ground. Break up the landscape with small and large pots scattered throughout the landscape. Pottery Planet is the place to pick up wild and mild containers for those herbs or roses. Pottery Planet has both locally thrown and imported pots ranging from itty-bitty to very tall.

Now it's time to personalize that outdoor space with what used to be called junk but we now call collectibles. Dented watering cans, weathered wicker chairs or rusty weathervanes can all be found at Tiffany's, a Soquel antique shop with a wide variety of outdoor doodads. With a heavy emphasis on shabby-chic and cottage style, Tiffany's has the perfect object to use as an ivy trellis or plant stand.

Remember, a sanctuary garden is everything a regular garden isn't. Forget about orderliness and weed-free, and instead relax into the wild and unkempt beauty of nature. Enjoy, kick back and hang up the garden gloves for a while.


Home Scapes Statuary Gardens
2504 Main St., Soquel, 462.2260

Florabunda Florist & Nursery
1030 41st Ave., SC, 462.0202

Aladdin Nursery & Florist
2905 Freedom Blvd., Watsonville, 724.7517

Pottery Planet
2600 Soquel Dr., SC, 465.9216

Tiffany's Antiques
3010 Center St., Soquel, 477.9808


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From the September 13-20, 2000 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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