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GARDEN SURROUNDINGS: Living And Gardening In A Mediterranean Climate

By Francesca Filanc, for Let’s Talk Plants! February 2024.

Living and Gardening in a Mediterranean Climate

We are lucky and unique that we live in a Mediterranean climate. There are only five Mediterranean climates in the world.

“The main characteristics of a Mediterranean climate are mild winters with enough rain to support plant growth and warm and dry summers through virtually no rain. The factors that create our climate are much like those that create similar climates in other parts of the world: the Mediterranean basin, South Africa, central Chile, and southwestern Australia.” Pat Welsh’s Southern California Gardening (Completely Revised and Updated)

“The concept of Mediterranean climate is characterized by mild wet winters and warm to hot, dry summers and occur on the west side of continents between about 30° and 40° latitude. However, the presence of a relatively large mass of water is unique to the actual Mediterranean region.” - Science Direct

“The Pacific Ocean with its relatively even temperature, also keeps our climate mild. In general, the closer your garden is to the ocean the cooler it will be in summer and the warmer in the winter. The farther inland you live the more extreme the temperatures that your garden will suffer.” - Pat Welsh 

We are so lucky to live in a Mediterranean climate. We can garden year-round. We can have color in our gardens in every season.

We have challenges to address with climate change, and with the Mediterranean climate, also with picking the correct plants for the correct area. When we plant the correct plants for our region we encourage birds, butterflies, and dragonflies to our gardens. Many people love planting plants from South Africa because they do as well here as they do there with the same climate.

In February you might enjoy reading in mum’s book about the Mediterranean climate, and the different zones, and how we can plant for color throughout the year.

(The book is available on Kindle.)

Large mixed media painting in-process by Francesca Filanc.

Happy Gardening!


~ Francesca


Artist, author, photographer, fly-fisher woman, Francesca Filanc grew up in old Del Mar and these days lives, paints and gardens in historic Olivenhain with two dogs.

Find her art and writings here:

She can be found on social media here:

Have gardening questions or want to learn more about Francie’s art? Contact: 

If you enjoyed reading this article, consider joining (or renewing your membership with) the San Diego Horticultural Society.



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