Garden(er) of the Month Linda Humes
(This article appeared in StusNews in October)
Relax in the peaceful tranquility and Zen-like appeal of Linda Humes’ hilltop garden oasis in Bluebird Canyon Written by SUZIE HARRISON Photos by Mary Hurlbut Situated on a steep hillside in Bluebird Canyon with spectacular views that stretch to the Pacific, Laguna Beach Garden Club member Linda Humes enjoys the tranquility of canyon life, a peacefulness reflected in the Zen-like feeling she has created throughout her spectacular sprawling garden. A Garden Club member since 2010, Humes can hardly believe it has been almost 10 years since she joined. The time has flown by. “I think the Garden Club is one of the best things that has ever happened to me. I went and I fell in love instantly,” said Humes. “There’s nothing not to like; it’s really fun, and I have met the best people.” And one of the aspects she loves most about the Club is doing good for the community, especially giving scholarships to students. “The students that we’ve helped, their stories are amazing,” Humes said. “There are over 200 members of the Laguna Beach Garden Club. Over 200, that’s pretty amazing. And we have a lot of people that come from faraway, that live to closer to the Long Beach Peninsula – from there, but from all over. And they come to our Garden Club because that’s how good it is.”
Linda Humes cherishes the new bluebird gate made for her by an artist friend Touring her garden evokes a true sense of calmness, washing away the cares of the world. Void of any noise, the only sound you can hear are roosters in the background from across the way at Bluebird Canyon Farms. “I used to have a koi pond out here and lots of flowers that constantly died. And the raccoons ate my fish, so I finally filled it in and made it into a succulent garden,” Humes said. “I love succulents. They’re my favorites. I don’t know the names of all of them, but they grow like crazy; they’re so easy. It just takes over.” I was amazed at what she was showing me. I couldn’t believe they could reproduce like they do. “One of the ladies in the Garden Club gave me these, I think there were seven and look at this, and look at this, see,” Humes said, as she pointed to seemingly hundreds of plants. “That’s how they multiply, they just keep getting babies.” She also said they were perfect during the drought since they don’t need much water and are hard to kill. Coming in a close second, Humes likes air plants, which as their name implies only need air. They too are environmentally friendly.
Aloe and succulents of every shape and size reproduce and flourish like crazy She showed me her gardenias, plumeria, fruit trees, and orchids. Some of the orchids were being rehabilitated. “And see this is from my front yard. Are you sure you want to feature my garden? Because my garden isn’t this fabulous garden, I think it’s my wall [that’s the best part],” Humes said. “I have a gardener and we did this wall together. It was so much fun. We did the stairs and we started the wall and we just kept going and going.” What I experienced was a gorgeous wall with a sea of beautiful plants at every turn. I said, yes, your garden should absolutely be featured. The Laguna Beach Garden Club was spot on by choosing hers. From plates to artwork to an Elvis license plate, the wall creates a magical piece of nostalgia accented by some of her favorite things. (Continued on the next page)
P.O. Box 362 • Laguna Beach, CA 92652 www.LagunaBeachGardenClub.org 501(c)(3) Charitable Organization Federal Tax ID #23-7297058
Memory lane… a wall filled with pieces by local artists, nostalgia and “stuff” “I got this from Shamus [Koch] from the Sawdust. I love him. I have a lot of Michele Taylor I love her. She’s just superb. I have some of her things here and there and everywhere. I have a lot of John Barber, and this is Muffin’s piece. I love to support local artists,” Humes said.
A dream come true for Linda, her own labyrinth built with friends to share Just when I think it couldn’t get any better, she shared the labyrinth she created. It was gorgeous with a variety of rocks lining the pathways. “With the labyrinth, you can do anything. You can’t help but relax as you walk it. It’s like one way in, and one way out. It takes a while. It doesn’t look like it but it does. Some people walk it, and they hum and sing, and pray,” Humes said. “You can do anything. It’s always different. But you lose yourself because you’re doing this thing. I think it’s good for your soul, for your mind.” “I’ve lived in his house for 25 years. I love my house. I love the canyon. I think it’s terrific,” said Humes. “We’re lucky we live here, aren’t we?” Indeed, we are!