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0714 2014 ipad

Unconventional Planters

For most people, a teakettle is something you use to boil water. Right? And cowboy boots are used to cover your feet.


Not for San Diegans Bette Childs and Joanie Espy. To these self-described “retired ladies of a certain age,” nearly any inanimate object you could name is an ideal candidate to be … a plant container.

Childs and Espy will drill a hole in just about anything they can get their hands on and fill it with dirt and plants that might range from hydrangeas to succulents and beyond.

They call themselves “The Flower Girls.” They met about 30 years ago when both were working as educators. As Childs watched her son succeed as a wholesale grower in North County, she decided to purchase some plants to start up a hobby.

That hobby turned into a profitable business.

The two women now participate in garden shows all over San Diego and Orange County, and they help plan floral arrangements for weddings. After 10 years of hard work, The Flower Girls have produced hundreds of plant containers, and have people calling from all over for gardening advice.

Their clientele consist mostly of middle-aged women, and the biggest seller has been the cowboy boots. Childs says they’ve planted and sold about 100 boots, but the containers can be anything — from a soap dish to a rocking chair.

The Flower Girls no longer feel the need to post pictures online or keep a website updated. They’ve gone low key — but they’ll still dish out advice to anybody who asks.

Their passion for flowers is still in bloom. “People don’t realize that when you get a plant, you do have to pay some attention to it,” says Espy. “It’s real, it’s alive.”

To contact The Flower Girls, call 760-753-1984. — Melissa Rauch

June 23, 2014

Storybook English Cottage

in Home Features
Storybook English Cottage A Coronado home blends multiple “personalities” Along our shores, the word “cottage” most often combines with beach and conjures up something small and cozy. On the other hand, cottage style sometimes describes something as grand as architect Julia Morgan’s fairy tale Wyntoon for William Randolph Hearst or a Vanderbilt summer Newport mansion. There’s something of both in a new…
May 21, 2014

Soaring Beauty

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Changing Spaces

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Everything But The…

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Focus on Color

Focus on Color An Encinitas property awash in a rainbow of flowers is picture-perfect Six million blossoms — that’s Ralph Peters’ approximation for the number of flowers that carpet his Encinitas garden every spring. It’s not merely a guess. The retired nuclear engineer devised a formula to make his calculation. But no one at the annual garden party he hosts with his wife, Donna, would doubt the size of…
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Tomato Troubleshooting

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Garden Ease

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February in the Garden

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Mindful Art

in Lifestyle
A Fine Line by Janice Kleinschmidt Mindful Art Memories in the Making uses painting as a way to help those with Alzheimer’s disease A member of the golf club, tennis club, athletic council and National Honor Society, Elinor Murphy also served as class secretary and president. These days, she resides at an assisted-living facility in Carmel Valley, where she painted Spring, one of 18 paintings paired with works by…
May 22, 2014

Depth Perception

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Eat, Stay, Love

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Rouge, Blanc & Bleu

Rouge, Blanc & Bleu With Independence Day and Bastille Day celebrations on the calendar this month, bring the best of American and French cuisines to the table. Here are three chefs’ tasty twists on classic fare that are worthy of fireworks.
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All Juiced Up With…

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Heavenly Dining

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It's Shocking


Did you hear the one about a group of people who would rather give themselves an electrical shock than be left alone with their thoughts?

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