Welcome to my Garden Blog

Nature: wild & untouched. Photographing it, preserving it, taking walks and drinking in the landscapes as they unfold.

Gardens: touched by loving hands. Cultivated, nurtured. Drinking in those landscapes is wonderful, as well.

In my garden one enjoys some of both. Generally unpruned & wild, my plants reshape the garden as they grow.

Beyond the garden borders, natives from the Santa Monica Mtns await. Oak trees with their shady canopies. Cactus & Sage in the sun.

Always there are animal creatures to join in the fun.

I look forward to sharing some of my experiences with you as they unfold.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

An Aloe From Louise

Aloe, sweet aloe, you are such a healthful plant, so full of life-giving medicinal nectar.  Aloe can alleviate pain from bug bites, help heal cuts, or give your face a soft glow...  And so, it is only fitting that my aloe plant should be my mother-in-law's plant.  Louise died of cancer just months after I met her, even though she had lived a very healthful life.  She ran every day, always ate at the salad bar when she went to restaurants, took her vitamins, and tended her roses in a sunny community garden.  She neither drank nor smoked, yet lung cancer claimed her anyway.  Louise was a beautiful spirit, her bright blue eyes full of life.. cut too short.

Louise's husband brought us the aloe plant she had been growing outside the front door of her Laguna Beach condo.  I accepted it into my Topanga garden readily, happy to have a piece of her garden, one of her plants, here with us.  At first, I wasn't sure where I wanted to put it, so I left it out front near my door in its wooden bucket.  Weeks passed, okay maybe months, and still it sat.  But it looked pretty, so I left it.  Until .. one day I realized it was "not to be moved"! The aloe's roots had broken through the bucket's wood bottom and rooted the plant firmly into the soil, just where it was!  So it remains many years later. A much larger version of Louise's aloe in a pot.

Every time I walk out my front door and see that aloe, I think of Louise.  I feel her presence reminding me to stay healthy, and keep her son healthy and happy, too. 

(Presently, I am trying to think of a way to transport a cutting of this magnificent plant to my sister-in-law in Portland, without killing it.  Any suggestions are welcome.)


  1. Great post,Native Gardener. By the way, in addition to the topical uses of aloe,it is also awesome in green smoothies.

    In a single plant, aloe vera offers potent, natural medicine that:

    • Halts the growth of cancer tumors.
    • Lowers high cholesterol.
    • Repairs "sludge blood" and reverses "sticky blood".
    • Boosts the oxygenation of your blood.
    • Eases inflammation and soothes arthritis pain.
    • Protects the body from oxidative stress.
    • Prevents kidney stones and protects the body from oxalates in coffee and tea.
    • Alkalizes the body, helping to balance overly acidic dietary habits.
    • Cures ulcers, IBS, Crohn's disease and other digestive disorders.
    • Reduces high blood pressure natural, by treating the cause, not just the symptoms.
    • Nourishes the body with minerals, vitamins, enzymes and glyconutrients.
    • Accelerates healing from physical burns and radiation burns.
    • Replaces dozens of first aid products, makes bandages and antibacterial sprays obsolete.
    • Halts colon cancer, heals the intestines and lubricates the digestive tract.
    • Ends constipation.
    • Stabilizes blood sugar and reduces triglycerides in diabetics.
    • Prevents and treats candida infections.
    • Protects the kidneys from disease.
    • Functions as nature's own "sports drink" for electrolyte balance, making common sports drinks obsolete.
    • Boosts cardiovascular performance and physical endurance.
    • Speeds recovery from injury or physical exertion.
    • Hydrates the skin, accelerates skin repair.

  2. Thanks, Raw Man! You have done a lot of research on the amazing aloe, I can see. To your health!

  3. That is a huge Aloe! It obviously likes it there. I grew up in Van Nuys and used to love driving through the canyon on the way to Malibu to surf. It looks like you have a beautiful place there for a Native Gardener.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog!

  4. Larry, Thanks for commenting. Yep, driving through Topanga to get to the Beach to surf.. fun Hwy for a drive. Hope you still get back to So Cal from time to time.

  5. That looks like aloe arborescens... can you use them medicinally too? Anyways, glad I found you on titter and your blog!

  6. Yes, Rainforest Gardener you are right. It is Aloe arborescens and has many medicinal properties. I have used it on my skin for cuts & bug bites.


Wildflowers, Santa Monica Mtns

Wildflowers, Santa Monica Mtns