This is the view from my “office.”

We’re still a couple weeks away from summer, but it’s already 90° with clear skies and a light breeze so we’ve flung all the doors and windows open making it hard to tell where “indoors” stops and “outdoors” begins.

Last year I re-jiggered the tropical garden room to act as gateway between the seclusion of the back deck and the patio and water garden near the front. Camellias, hydrangeas, cannas, pineapple guava, monstera and a rubber tree shade the house side while bananas, lemon guava, passion fruit and tropical black raspberries and table grapes shade the deck cover and western facing portions of the path.

By mid-summer these will grow dense, shading the western portion of the house and creating a sort of “secret passage” to the back deck, the citrus grove and the oak-lined dry creek below.