Deep Roots Garden Center             Newsletter                          January 2012

Happy New Year 2012!

All our very best wishes to our customers

for the coming year.


May your garden grow, your plants thrive, your flowers bloom, your vegetables flourish and

may you obtain deep satisfaction from

your connection to the earth.


Peace, Love, Plants...



Not applicable on labor, design or delivery fees; or CSA boxes


Let Colorful Foliage Plants

Liven Up Your Winter Garden

For most of us, thoughts of winter conjure visions of landscapes void of color, filled with deciduous trees and semi-dormant shrubs. We also think winter is the time to relax about landscaping. While this may be true in the east, winter is actually a very important time for most Southern California landscapes and is the perfect time to add unique combinations and varieties to your garden. In the west there is no excuse for a drab winter landscape. In fact, many plant varieties are at their best this time of year, and they can enhance winter landscapes with beautiful textures and color. 

VINES: Selecting vines for your landscape can lend color and fragrance.


Hardenbergia violacea – (photo left)This beautiful easy-to-grow,drought tolerant evergreen vine features long grey-green leaves and abundant lilac-colored flowers in winter. It is wind-tolerant and offers prolific displays of winter color. IN STOCK RIGHT NOW: Hardenbergia "Walkabout Purple" with beautiful deep purple flowers.




Variegated Bower Vine (Pandorea jasminoides photleft) This is an attractive variegated vine that keeps its beautiful cream and green coloring all year through. In summer it produces beautiful light pink trumpet shaped flowers with a dark pink center. Drought tolerant once established it is perfect for patio covers and arbors as it always looks beautiful.


SHRUBS: Many shrubs are evergreen and are the foundation of a year-round garden. They have leaves in a large spectrum of colors from almost white variegated, gray, yellow, light green, dark green, through to dark burgundy, often with a beautiful display of flowers.


Phormium - (photo left) Phormiums come in a wide variety of colors and sizes from darkest burgundy through to variegated varieties of cream and green, or yellow and apricot.  Some are dwarf varieties growing to 18" tall, and some giant varieties grow to 8 feet or more. These are drought tolerant and slow growing plants that will thrive in full sun to shade.


Abelia— (photo left) sometimes deciduous but usually evergreen, Abelias have foliage that takes on rich winter colors. Kaleidoscope is by far the best with variegated foliage in the summer that becomes all the colors of a kaleidoscope in the winter. Plant them in full sun for the best colors.


Hebe - (photo left) this is a large group of shrubs in various sizes from 12” tall to 12 ‘ tall. Many of them have variegated or colored foliage and all of them have flowers in colors ranging from deep purple, through magenta, lilac blue to white. They are ideally suited to seaside gardens as they are not sensitive to wind or salt.



Ligularia: (photo left) This is a group of durable plants originating in Asia that are ideal for the shade garden, although they can also take some sun. They are happiest with regular water but can live quite happily alongside drought tolerant species once established. They have large round leaves that can grow to 12” across in some varieties. In the fall large yellow daisy-like flowers grow above the leaves which are very popular with butterflies.


Dianella: (Photo left) This a large group of grassy leaved plants from Australia, similar to Phormium but does not grow as big. More varieties become available each year. Leaf colors include white variegated, gray blue, dusty blue and deep green. The deep green leaved variety spreads by underground runners and has royal blue berries that appear in summer. Very drought tolerant, easy to grow plant.


Westringia fruticosa (Coast Rosemary, photo left) – this plant has attractive whorls of small leaves that are usually a light gray-green color with some cultivars being attractively variegated. The flowers, which usually are most profuse from late winter to early summer color from white to light lavender though some can bloom year round in coastal climates. They grow best in full sun but some can tolerate a varying amount of shade and while fairly drought tolerant most of them appreciate irrigation in summer. They make excellent plants for coastal region as they tolerate wind and salt.


Grevillea - (Photo left) Ranging from small shrubs to large trees, grevilleas are evergreen plants with needle-like narrow leaves or ferny pinnate foliage, usually in whorls around the stems. The flowers, which are fragrant in some species, are arranged in three basic forms: spider-like, toothbrush-like, and large brushes. Their flower heads, which open at varying times, are composed of many small flowers, usually in shades of yellow, orange, or red. Some varieties flower all winter long. Plant grevilleas in a sunny position with light, gritty, free-draining soil that is low in phosphates. Although drought tolerant once established, they flower more freely and the foliage is healthier for occasional deep watering. Needs no fertilizers. 


Leucadendron – Also called Cone Bush or Cone Flower. Native to South Africa and part of the Proteaceae group of plants, Leucadendrons (photo left) are a large group of evergreen trees and shrubs that have beautiful winter foliage ranging from gray to dark red with brightly colored bracts. A drought tolerant, easy to grow plant.


Liriope - Also commonly called border grass it is not actually a grass but a member of the lily family, a fact that inspires another of its common names, lilyturf. Liriope is a hardy group of plants that withstand dry conditions and can grow in both sun and shade. It is available in several varieties including some with silvery white and yellow leaf variegation. All varieties produce flower spikes that range from white, through lilac to deep purple. Most varieties grow to between 10 and 18 inches in height and form clumps or spread slowly making them ideal ground covers for shady or part shady areas. Liriope are drought-tolerant and can withstand hot and dry conditions better than most other grasses and ground covers available today. They do, however, prefer a slightly moist soil and look their best when they receive some water, whether from rain or an occasional watering.


Euphorbia –This is a very large genus of plants that includes the Christmas favorite Poinsettia. The sub- group that we recommend for winter color is also called “Spurge”. It's the plant with everything: evergreen for winter structure, foliage in myriad colors and frothy flower-bracts in winter and spring. Easy to grow and drought tolerant these plants are happy in containers or in the ground in sun or part sun and come in a variety of leaf and flower colors ranging from dark burgundy to lime green and grey-green. They also self-sow giving you new little plants the following year.


Euonymus - A group of evergreen shrubs with variable habits including upright shrubs, ground covers and vines. A wide choice of foliage colors is available, with the most popular being the fiery red Burning Bush and the yellow variegated variety “Emerald and Gold” (photo left).



Coprosma - This is a group of evergreen shrubs with multi-colored leaves that originate in New Zealand, Australia and islands of the Pacific Ocean. Coprosmas used to be considered boring evergreens with their small, shiny, plain green leaves, but there have recently been some new hybrid varieties released with leaves of various color combinations (photo left). Some are small, low growing shrubs with tiny colored leaves, and some can grow to between 6 and 8ft tall.Many varieties have beautiful variegated foliage that shines and sparkles in the garden, hence its common name of Mirror plant. Color variegations range through several combinations and include dark burgundy- green, red, pink, orange, yellow and cream. They are drought tolerant and an outstanding addition to a mixed border, and they will accept a big pruning session without too much sulking. Try planting some with other drought tolerant plants with contrasting leaves such as Cordyline, Phormium or Dianella.


Cordyline -  is a group of spiky-leaved plants native to the western Pacific Ocean region, from New Zealand, eastern Australia, southeastern Asia, to Hawaii. They can add lots of striking winter and summer color to the drought tolerant landscape. The leaves can come in a variety of colors from almost black, dark burgundy, and green through to red and light pink, yellow and cream. They are about 12 to 30 inches in length and from 2 to 6 inches in width. The trunk of this palm-like evergreen shrub is not branched and can grow as tall as 10 feet. However this is often too tall for our smaller coastal gardens where the many smaller varieties such as “Electric Pink” (photo above left) are more suitable. Cordyline likes partial shade to almost full sun. When in full-sun the plant should be watered more often. Allow the soil to dry out between waterings


Vinca – groundcover. A group of evergreen ground cover vines with periwinkle or purple flowers in late winter/early spring. Some varieties have variegated leaves that provide pretty ground cover color in part shade areas. The most vigorous is called Vinca Variegata Major (photo left) with grey green/white variegated leaves and pretty dusty blue flowers in late winter and spring. 



CSA Vegetable Boxes

We are an established drop off point for Community Supported Agriculture organic vegetable boxes. They are delivered to Deep Roots Garden Center every Wednesday around 2pm and we store them in our large flower cooler until closing time the following day. Customers may order a box every week, every two weeks, every month or simply when you feel like one. The boxes contain enough seasonal vegetables to feed a family of four for a week or a single/couple for two weeks. Payment is in advance - please place your order by noon on Mondays. Why not come in and order a box? Or you can phone 310-376-0567 or e-mail and order one.  At $21 a box it is great value for money.

Deep Roots

Garden Center & Floral Design Studio


January Hours:

9AM - 5PM daily

201-207 N. Sepulveda Blvd.

Manhattan Beach,

CA 90266


Garden Center: 310-376-0567

Flower Shop: 310-379-3634

What to do in the garden in January

Plant Winter veggies and fruit! 



Ready to transplant : We have just had a delivery of winter vegetable and herb plants including two types of beets, two types of lettuce, two types of heirloom lettuce, arugula, cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, bok choy, artichokes Swiss chard, celery, Tuscan kale, onions, and green onions. Also in this delivery were oregano, dill, sage, rosemary, parsley, chives, cilantro and strawberry plants. Also just in is a wide selection of dwarf and semi-dwarf fruit trees and espaliers including lemons, oranges, lime, kumquats, grapefruit, mandarins, apples, peaches and avocadoes.


January is the perfect time to experiment with vegetables not found in typical spring or summer gardens. Vegetables that can be planted or sown as seeds now include asparagus, beets, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celeriac, chives, collards, endive, fava beans, kale, lettuce, onions, parsnips, potatoes, peas, radishes, spinach and turnips.


Most outdoor garden activity this month is limited to pruning, cleaning up and spreading soil amendments. Some seeds will germinate outside this month if the weather stays warmer but beware of possible cold snaps. To be sure, sow seeds indoors and put the pots on an electric warming pad to help them along.




Sow seeds or plant early spring flowering plants such as Violas, Forget-Me-Nots, Pansies,  Sweet Peas  Nasturtiums, Icelandic Poppies, California Poppies, and Johny-Jump-Ups.


Introducing you to...


If the English Garden look is just your thing, but you still would like drought tolerant plants, consider the perennial Hellebores - also know as Lenten Rose or Christmas Rose.(Now in stock at Deep Roots).

Hellebores have attractive evergreen foliage and bloom from December through to April, some varieties bloom even later. The flowers can be single or double and come in a wide variety of colors, from white to pink to magenta, and pale greens. They need regular water for the first few months in the ground but once established they can withstand quite dry conditions. They do best in the dry shade found under deciduous trees, but also do well in pots placed in the shade or half sun during the winter. The plants increase in size over time and if they really like their position in your garden they will spread slowly through the years.

One word of warning - they HATE to be moved, so be careful not to disturb the roots when taking them out of their original containers, and once they are in the ground leave them where they are. 


Blue Hydrangeas... 


To obtain deep blue hydrangeas don't  forget to keep sprinkling Hydrangea Blueing formula on the soil around your hydrangea bushes. Our soil and water in Southern California are very alkaline and blue hydrangeas need acid soil conditions to remain blue. To be really effective this needs to be done all year round, but if you have missed doing this during the winter there is still time if you start now.


Clean up time...


If you haven't already done so January is THE time to clean up your garden. If you have bulbs planted in the ground it is imperative that you finish any cleaning that necessitates walking on the flower beds BEFORE the bulbs start coming don't want to crush those little green shoots as they push their way above ground.

Rake up and dispose of any leaves on flower beds, under rose bushes and shrubs. Leaves can harbor fungal diseases and provide an ideal over-wintering environment for insect larvae and disease pathogens. Once clean-up is complete spread a 4 inch layer of soil amendment such as organic compost, earthworm castings, or Growmulch onto your flower beds and let the worms do the rest. All soils can benefit from nutrient-rich compost and mulch. Soil amendments applied to the soil surface now will decay between now and spring and their nutrients will wash into the soil gradually with each rain. Healthy plant root growth and overall plant vigor depends on a moist and loose soil.


Get rid of weeds...


One or two days of rain is all it takes for weeds to sprout. One benefit of the rain is that weeds are easier to pull out when the soil is moist and loose. Placing a two to three inch layer of mulch around trees, shrubs and plants prevents weed seeds from germinating. If weeds are already starting to grow, remove as many as you can and then cover the area with mulch. The goal is to prevent sunlight from reaching the weeds so they will not have fuel to grow. A common mistake is not adding enough mulch for the weed-suppression process to be effective. Once taken root, weeds need only a small amount of sunlight to flourish.Organic mulches break down over time, so if you already have mulch in your garden, replenish with an additional one-inch layer.

Another effective method of preventing new weeds from sprouting is to use a pre-emergent grass and weed  preventer such as Amaze.


Spray and prune...


While your fruit trees are dormant it is time to spray with dormant oil especially if this was not done last month or if it rained within two days of that application. The point is to have the sprayed material on the tree throughout the dormant season, and especially at specific pest growth periods. Choose a day when the wind is calm. The next critical time for spraying is about mid-February, when the buds are swollen but don't yet show color. Spraying at the precise period of bud swell is critical--before the buds swell is too early, and after the blossoms open is too late. Once the buds open, the damage has already been done.


This is the big month for pruning deciduous fruit trees. Basic guide-lines for winter dormant pruning are to remove crowded or crossed branches, to open the center for good light exposure and airflow, to repair structural weakness, and to remove vigorous vertical-growing branches (waterspouts). The height or width of the tree can also be reduced. Take care to not leave stubs or to over prune in any single year, as this encour-ages excessive new new growth with more foliage and less fruit.

An excellent, inexpensive, and easily-used disinfectant for pruning tools is rubbing (isopropyl) alcohol. Another way of disinfecting your tools is by dipping them into a 10% bleach solution. Wipe shears with the disinfectant after pruning every several cuts to avoid spreading any diseases. Clean the blades extra well before moving to another tree or bush.

Pruning cuts that are under one-and-a-half inches across don't need protective covering. Paint larger cuts with Tanglefoot latex tree sealer. Prune ornamental trees and shrubs, vines and roses this month.


Slugs and snails...


Keep an eye on the snail and slug population. They love cold nights and moisture and will be laying eggs in hidden places. Pick them off by hand in the first light of the day or use Sluggo slug bait which is safe to use around edibles.


Valentine's Day not far away...


Valentine's Day is only weeks away. In the Floral Design Studio our Floral Designers are gearing up for this, one of the busiest days of the year. Start planning now to make this the most special Valentine's Day ever for your sweetheart.


Our designers create original, one-of-a-kind bouquets and floral arrangements to your specifications. For a photo gallery of our designs visit


Send the classic dozen (or two dozen) red roses, a small sweetheart arrangement or make a statement with one of our large spectacular creations.


Call 310-379-3634 and pre-order your arrangement. We deliver!


In the Language of Flowers red roses symbolize true love, and pink roses symbolize perfect happiness. Red and white roses together symbolize unity.  Roses in general mean beauty and love. 


Deep Roots Garden Center • 207 N. Sepulveda Blvd. • Manhattan Beach • CA • 90266
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