Weathering Heights

By: Richard G Turner Jr

Richard G Turner Jr is the editor emeritus of Pacific Horticulture. After receiving degrees in architecture and landscape architecture from…

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Snowfall measured in feet…rainfall measured in fractions of an inch. Either way, it was a challenging winter here on the West Coast. In the Northwest, gardeners are awaiting spring but anticipating significant changes in their gardens due to snow or freeze damage. In California, meanwhile, gardeners are wondering if there will be enough water available to keep thirsty or young plants alive. Daily news reports hint at even stranger climatic changes to come.

Add to those worries high unemployment and an economy significantly out of whack, and you have the makings of a dark and stormy novel. Yet, from challenges such as these, we—and our gardens—grow. We learn which of our favorite plants can actually be depended upon to thrive in spite of adversity. We learn how better to protect ourselves against the vicissitudes of nature—and the economy. And we learn how to plan for an uncertain, but certainly changing, future in our gardens, our environments, and our society.

Friends help in situations such as these. They provide propagules of those plants that were lost from our gardens, and advise on how early to prune back frost damage or how to water more efficiently to see our gardens through a drought. And they often help us through difficult fiscal times.

Now in its thirty-fourth year, Pacific Horticulture continues to serve its readership, in part due to the generous support of its Friends, readers who make contributions beyond their subscription dollars to maintain the work of the Pacific Horticultural Foundation. Our Friends include individuals, corporations who promote subscriptions to their customers, and agencies like the East Bay Municipal Utility District, which provided substantial support for our recent Growing Natives Symposium.

The Foundation began the year with a new president of the board of directors: Judy Bradley is the first president to represent the southern-most part of our region, the San Diego Horticultural Society. With a background in fundraising, Judy will be working closely with other board members and with our sponsors, partners, and Friends to make sure that the current economic downturn exerts only a minimal impact on the Foundation’s mission-driven activities.

With a little help from you, our Friends, Pacific Horticulture and Pacific Horticultural Foundation will continue for another thirty-four years “to stimulate and inspire gardeners in the art and science of horticulture on the West Coast.”