About Us

Comprehensive Gardening Information

Our mighty helpful gardening website provides you with a guide to planting, growing, harvesting and watering a variety of flowers, herbs and vegetables. Have a question or problem? Want to learn more about gardening? GardenZeus is your all-inclusive resource.

For Every Zip Code in California

We celebrate California’s diversity, and its diverse gardening climates. Plants which thrive in cool, coastal areas may struggle or need different care in warm, inland valleys. Just enter your zip code to view gardening information for your area.

By Gardening Professionals

We believe that local experts know best! Our information is written or reviewed by local gardening professionals for plants they know best. Think of GardenZeus as your personal, online, mobile gardening consultant.

Customized for Your Garden

Enter your zip code, choose your plants, and dig into plant information and monthly tasks customized just for you. Signup today to get started.

GardenZeus Team

Ann Clary

Ann Clary

Co-Founder

Ann Clary met her GardenZeus.com co-founder Darren Butler at one of his intermediate gardening classes and she became inspired to grow new and different plants in a sustainable, bio intensive manner.  After finding herself constantly creating monthly to-do lists for California gardening from four or five different resources, she thought there had to be a better way.  This became the original impetus for Ann and Darren’s partnership, the process that evolved into GardenZeus.com.

Ann is a professional lawyer and administrator, and an avid amateur gardener. She lives in Pasadena, California and she enjoys cooking for her husband and two grown children. She especially likes to cook what she grows in her vegetable garden. Ann is a big fan of Alice Waters, Julia Child, Thomas Keller and Nora Ephron. She says, “I know Nora was not really a professional cook, but she liked to cook and had lots of funny things to say.” Ann is also a competitive tennis player and an avid Stanford Cardinal football fan.

Contact Ann at ann@gardenzeus.com.

Darren Butler

Darren Butler

Co-Founder

Darren Butler is a Consulting Arborist, Ecological Landscape Designer, Greywater & Irrigation Designer and Consultant, Landscape & Garden Consultant, Permaculturist, Speaker, and Teacher. He started gardening at age five, working summer landscaping jobs and in orchards as a pre-teen and teen, and as of 2014, has 27 years of diverse adult experience working with plants, trees, gardens, and landscapes.

Darren’s beginnings as a gardener and arborist were in a strip of trees behind the home where he grew up as a young child, the last remnant of what had been a native woods in upstate New York. He played among the trees and began climbing them by the time he was walking. When he was about five years old, his parents started a vegetable garden for the first time. He still remembers the first seeds he ever planted, snap peas, and the wonder and amazement he felt in doing so.

Over his lifetime he has gardened extensively in New York (as a child), Utah, and Southern California, with professional plant-care experience also in Northern California. In the mid-1990s, he began the long process of teaching himself how to garden in the alkaline clay soil and dry Mediterranean climate of the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles. He became a University of California Master Gardener in 2005, and began designing landscapes, and consulting as a landscape/garden/irrigation expert and arborist that same year.

Over the years Darren has accumulated professional qualifications and accomplishments to distinguish himself and to earn a living as an independent landscape consultant, teacher, designer, and speaker. Darren has appeared on international television for a large audience, NPR radio, local television, and in many other media as an expert, and has worked as a testifying arborist expert witness. He maintains many landscape- and plant-related certifications and licenses including ISA Certified Arborist, University of California Master Gardener, Certified Landscape Irrigation Auditor, Permaculture Design Certificate, and ISA Certified Tree Risk Assessor.

He has been a frequent presenter at conferences and symposia, and been keynote, plenary, featured, or main-stage speaker at many major events, including 2010 through 2012 California Homeschool Network Annual Conference and Expo, 2011 Southern California Permaculture Convergence, 2010 Huntington Botanic Garden Symposium on Urban Agriculture, 2009 City of Riverside’s Earth Day Festival put on by Habitat for Humanity, and 2009 Long Beach Green Festival, and has been a speaker at dozens of major conferences and events, including the 2008 and 2011 California Statewide Master Gardener Conferences, and the 2010 American Horticultural Society’s Youth and Children Gardening Symposium.

Since 2005 Darren has offered dozens of workshops, courses, presentations, and retreats to thousands of students and attendees on topics related to gardening, landscape design and management, urban agriculture, trees, irrigation, permaculture, sustainability, horticulture, and more. He has guest-taught or presented in a wide variety of venues such as botanic gardens, university and professional symposia, festivals, water district offices, churches, and community centers.

Darren has taught Designing Sustainable Landscapes and Diagnosing Plant and Tree Problems for the UCCE LA County Master Gardener Training Program for eight years, and volunteered as a University of California Master Gardener since 2005. From 2007 to 2009 he served on statewide Advisory and Steering Committees for all University of California Master Gardener programs through the statewide MG offices at UC Davis, which influenced the outreach efforts of thousands of California Master Gardeners and more than 100,000 California residents they serve every year.

From 2011 to 2013 he taught two runs of a major, 48-hour train-the-trainer course at the Huntington Botanic Garden on cutting-edge urban agricultural methods called “Urban Ecosystem Agriculture.” From 2010 to 2013, he worked as garden manager and teacher for an at-risk kids’ gardening program at A Place Called Home in South Los Angeles. In 2010 he blogged at KPCC radio’s Facebook community, The Freeway. In 2008 he was a core teacher for a permaculture design course (PDC) with Graham Burnett, Scott Horton, and William Faith. In 2007 and 2008 he developed curriculum for and taught certification programs in Sustainable Biointensive Gardening and Edible Landscaping. Since 2008 he has offered mentorship and apprenticeship programs in arboriculture, landscape design, and other topics to many adult apprentices.

Darren has worked as a consultant and designer for a variety of clients from celebrities to nonprofit organizations to everyday citizens, and since 2005 volunteered thousands of hours primarily to educate, promote sustainable practices, support programs that help people grow and eat nutritious food, serve at-risk children and youth, and to serve others in discovering meaningful and joyful experience through connections with plants, trees, soil, and gardens.

Contact Darren at darren@gardenzeus.com.

When not creating innovative, customized content for GardenZeus, Darren consults as an arborist, horticulturist, and landscape/garden expert, including soil testing and analysis, design and species recommendations, problem and pest diagnosis, and more. Contact Darren regarding his work as an independent consultant at darren@pobox.com.

GardenZeus.com is owned by GardenZeus LLC, a California Limited Liability Company.  Ann Clary and Darren Butler are co-owners of GardenZeus LLC. The principal business office of GardenZeus LLC is located in the State of California.

GardenZeus Advisors

Yvonne Savio

Yvonne Savio is one of the best known gardening experts and personalities in Southern California. For 21 years, from 1994 to 2015, she was the much-beloved head of the Master Gardener Program for the University of California Cooperative Extension office in Los Angeles County — www.celosangeles.ucanr.edu.

Yvonne grew up on a 3/4-acre hillside lot in Pasadena in Southern California, with year-round fruits and vegetables and flowers homegrown with lots of manure and compost and “making do” before it was called recycling or repurposing. For 15 years, she worked in the Botany and Vegetable Crops Cooperative Extension Departments at the University of California, Davis, where she conferred with Statewide Vegetable Specialists regarding growing and postharvest handling. Since 1984, she has contributed weekly gardening columns, features, and photographs to California and national newspapers, magazines, journals, and newsletters. In 2015, Yvonne retired from the University and initiated her website – www.GardeningInLA.net – where she blogs once a week from her home garden, specializing in drought-tolerant and recycling techniques for growing vegetables, fruits, perennials, roses, and succulents.

Christy Wilhelmi

Christy Wilhelmi is author of Gardening for Geeks (Adams Media, 2013) and founder of Gardenerd www.gardenerd.com, the ultimate resource for garden nerds, where she publishes information-packed monthly newsletters, weekly blog posts, and podcasts. She also specializes in small-space, organic vegetable garden design and consulting. She holds regular organic gardening classes in California, and has co-taught organic gardening at the Esalen Institute in Big Sur, CA.

Between 70-80 percent of her family’s produce comes from her garden of less than 200 square feet. She lives in Los Angeles, CA with her husband, some chickens and two gardens.

Kellee Matsushita

Kellee Matsushita is an instructor at the UC Santa Cruz Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems. Kellee has worked as a garden educator and coordinator at several community garden projects, including the Network for a Healthy California demonstration garden in Van Nuys and the El Cariso Mountain Garden in Sylmar, CA; and has worked as a farmer and educator at Pie Ranch in Pescadero, CA. She is especially interested in seed conservation and preservation, and the links between genetic biodiversity, cultural diversity and collective liberation. She dreams of having an educational seed farm that serves as a hub where farmers can select, save and share seeds and stories.

GardenZeus Consultants

Katarina Eriksson

Katarina Eriksson is a rose expert and landscape designer who worked for 10 years as First Head Gardener of Roses in the Shakespeare and Herb Gardens at The Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens in San Marino, California. She has also worked for Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, Grow Native Nursery in West Los Angeles, other retail nurseries, and Form LA Landscape. She continues to pursue her passion for fragrant roses and sustainable gardening practices by offering professional services through her small business, Kat’s Landscape Design and Horticultural Garden Care. Katarina can be reached at katsflowers@gmail.com

Marie Massa

Marie Massa is a horticulturist, landscape designer, and environmental scientist. She has worked for the Theodore Payne Foundation coordinating habitat restoration and installing native landscaping, for the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County where she maintained California natives, and doing environment-related field research and administrative work for a variety of nonprofit institutions. Marie currently designs and maintains California-native wildscapes in Los Angeles through her company Pure California. Marie can be reached at massa30@gmail.com

GardenZeus.com is owned by GardenZeus LLC, a California Limited Liability Company. Ann Clary and Darren Butler are co-owners of GardenZeus LLC. The principal business office of GardenZeus LLC is located in the State of California.

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