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A slave to the Goddess Flora shares his garden adventures.

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    My pal Alison of Bonney Lassie, Tom, and I hitched a ride on a Washington State ferry just like the ones on  "Grey's Anatomy" to Vashon Island to attend our first group of Northwest Perennial  Alliance Open Gardens.

    This sign from the ferry is reassuring.  It seems that if you're falling apart, you can get yourself together here. 

    Here we are arriving at Vashon Island.  I love the relaxed pace of the island  and the  friendly folks who live there. It's only a 10 minute ferry ride from Tacoma, where I live, 20 from Seattle but it feels like it's much farther away. 

    The Garden of Jonathan Morse is located on the north shore of the island and is, I'm assuming, where Jonathan came up with the name of his business, North Shore Garden Design.  The first area we explored was this one with the beach view closest to the parking area.  As we came down the driveway, we saw fabulous sets of gates which we thought led to the gardens of neighbors.  We learned that these were all part of North Shore Gardens!

    Pulmonaria foliage is one of my many favorites! 

    I could live with a view like this! 

    The staircase down from the deck was flanked with pot groupings.

    Do you think that Jonathan likes Agaves?

     Maybe we should descend the staircase to think about it.

    Looking a little dangerous, don't you think?
    From the blurb in the tour book:
    Tucked into a long, narrow ravine, surrounded by century-old Douglas firs and Western red cedars, North Shore Gardens is divided into several distinct garden spaces.  As you enter the property, a large gateway, built from log rounds, leads you into the Orchard Garden, where you will find a potager, perennial beds, a shade garden and a small grove of fruit trees.  Farther down, the land slopes toward the Puget Sound.  On the left is a terraced hillside garden with a small greenhouse and paths leading to the main house.  The entrance to the main house is formalized by a succulent/alpine garden and a massive arbor - complete with a living roof that "drips" succulents onto the ground below.  a narrow path meanders along the side of the main house out to the front and a spectacular view over the sound. 

    Honeysuckle lines one of the paths.  Must be very fragrant at night and early morning.

    Here's a view of the very ferry that we just arrived on making another crossing.  The spot on the water fairly close to the dry part of the shore just about in the middle of the picture is a Great Blue Heron doing a little fishing.  Unfortunately I didn't bring my big zoom lens with me.

    Do deer, of which there is a large population on the island,  like hostas or is this slug damage? 

    Loved this!
     More Fabulous pots!

    The aforementioned succulent-dripping arbor.
     Part of the succulent tapestry that carpets the ground in the alpine/garden.

    Looking  back at the main house.

     The shiny smooth trunks of Manzanita - Yum!

    As you can imagine, this fuchsia was quite alive with humming bird wings.

    Another of my plant favorites, Podophyllum delavayi.  Jonathan reports that he's found seedlings of these far from the parent plants coming up between rocks in full sun so something is transporting the seeds.
     Delightful grouping of Arisaemas.
     Inspired combination of Arisaemas and Brunnera 'Jack Frost'

     Amazing entrance to the Orchard Garden.

    Purple and gold is a favorite combination and one area that kept drawing me was this one with Cerinthe purpurascens, Geranium 'Ann Folkard', and Red Orach, another edible relative of spinach.

     The Cerinthe was simply glowing in the bright overcast morning. 

    Red Orach is a reseeding annual and I'm told that once you have it, you've got it for as long as you want it.  I found a plant of it at the Vashon Farmers Market later in the day.

    What a wonderful property with  towering evergreens as backdrop and views of the bay!  It's an island, there's a lot of that kind of thing happening there!

    Hooray, it's cardiocrinum season!

    Looking toward the potager with the orchard just behind and a tiny view of the bay.

    Another gorgeous gold and purple combination.

    The potager.

     Tradescantia "Sweet Kate"  (guessing)

    Hill from Jonathan's home to the main house with quintessential Pacific Northwest plants, Salal and sword ferns both evergreen.

    In one part of the garden Giant Horsetail was allowed to grow.  I know it's considered a weed but I think it's gorgeous and it's a native to boot! 

    And here's the gardener who does all of this himself although he gets some help from his parents who also live on the property. Jonathan has done all of this over the last 16 years.  (That must have made him about 10 years old when he started.) 
    Alison and I decided that we would post in opposite order of each other so she'll be starting with the garden with which I'll be ending. Our posts will meet somewhere in the middle.  Be sure to check out her upcoming posts here!

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    So, Alison and I drove through town  on our tour of gardens, saw the Vashon Farmers' Market and decided to stop and check it out.   I'm easily distracted by anything that looks like it might be fun and fortunately, Alison puts up with me.  We parked across the way and walked to the market.   I've always loved this Boston Ivy covered building!

    Attractive mural!

    There was live music, and lots of beautiful island-grown produce, fabulous baked goods, hand made local beer, and much more.  Did I think to take pictures of any of that?  No.  I was very excited to find this Purple Orach plant after having just seen it at Jonathan's North Shore Garden a few minutes before.


    Alison and I spent a long time looking at Lisa Betz Originals  because we found both her personality and her work delightful. 

    Be sure to check out    Lisa's  website here where you can even order her work online!

    So many fun choices! 

    Ask Alison about her purchases of Lisa's work!  

    Is this salmon beautiful or what?  When I see wonderful mosaic work like this I get the urge to do more myself.  It usually passes when I remember how messy and tedious  grouting is.
     Mirror, mirror on the wall...

    While we had a great time at the market, I took few pictures as I was busy enjoying the event.  You'll need to make a point of stopping by next time you're on the island on a Saturday to see how cool it is.

    Fresh, locally grown strawberries that aren't the size of your head and really taste like strawberries are one of my favorite things in the world!  Guess what we ate for a couple of  days? 


    I apologize for not doing a better job of showing all the wonders at the market but it sure was a delight!   We were thrilled to see this rare Vashon Island Bear/Sheep hybrid.  An extremely mellow and happy fellow, he bid us farewell as we left the farmers' market!

    I'm sure glad that we stopped.  Isn't it grand the things we sometimes bump into when we're on our way to something else?  Tomorrow we're on to Kathy's Corner Nursery!

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    Vashon Island is one of my favorite places to visit and luckily, it's not far from where I live.  Today, Alison and I continue our day on the island with a visit to Kathy's Corner Nursery.  You may remember my previous post about this nursery nearly a year ago.  Most of what I would say about the nursery is contained in that post so do check it out.

    Kathy's Corner always has a lot of fabulous plants and at this time of year the nursery is  bursting at the seams with glorious color!
    Alison found a beautiful black Siberian Iris within a couple of seconds of walking in the gate!

    There is a wonderful article written by Kathy, the owner of this establishment, in the publication Green Profit here.  I've been visiting the island for at least 16 years and have followed the ups and downs Kathy mentions in her article and it's interesting to hear her perspective as a nursery owner. 

    What follows is a few of the many wonderful things that grabbed our attention on this trip!

    Dianthus barbatus a.k.a. Sweet William.

    Primula noverna 'Deep Blue'

    Blue and yellow, a classic combination (Calibrachoa and trailing Lobelia) are pretty by themselves.
    But add a Rhodochiton (Purple Bell Vine) to the mix and it's spectacular!

    Double flowered Nasturtium (Tropaeolum) whose name escapes me and I'm too lazy to go outside with a flashlight to find it.

    Sempervivum.  Ya gotta draw the line somewhere!

    Veronica 'Goldwell'  lovely variegated foliage and beautiful flowers!

    Love this sign!

    Mahonia 'Soft Caress.
    Zonal geraniums (pelargonium)

     I never tire of Eryngiums!

    Some Epiphyllum strutting it's stuff as only they can!

    Sneaking a peek into one of the work areas.

    Dahlia with gorgeous black foliage.

    Another Dahlia looking very festive!

    The fragrance of peonies is so sweet and fresh!

    Lavender anyone?

    Shade tolerant plants are displayed in the shade of these gorgeous trees. 

    While I haven't grown petunias in a while, I still enjoy seeing them, especially the dark purple fragrant ones!  Here is 'Picasso in Pink', a little pinker than 'Pretty Much Picasso'  which was all the rage a few years ago. 
     Calibrachoas and petunias come  in such interesting colors.

    So, here's our cart which includes several Begonia boliviensis  with pink flowers, a relatively new introduction.  Kathy also had  B.boliviensis in white and yellow. 
    Going inside to pay for our finds we were greeted by these.
    Here's the amazing Kathy Wheaton  freely sharing her  plant wisdom!
     This place is huge and we could have easily gotten lost  in all of the great plants on several acres that just keep going and going.  Since we wanted to see all of the gardens on the tour though, we decided to stop and move on.  I can't wait to go back! 


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    A relaxing moment brought to you by Dig Nursery on Vashon Island about which I'll share more soon.

     If you're chomping at the bit to hear more about DIG!  Check out their site here, Danger Garden's visit here, and my previous post here.  In the meantime, aren't these floating peonies lovely?

    Silent Noon

    Your hands lie open in the long fresh grass,—
       The finger-points look through like rosy blooms:
       Your eyes smile peace. The pasture gleams and glooms
    'Neath billowing skies that scatter and amass.
    All round our nest, far as the eye can pass,
       Are golden kingcup fields with silver edge
       Where the cow-parsley skirts the hawthorn-hedge.
    'Tis visible silence, still as the hour-glass.

    Deep in the sun-searched growths the dragon-fiy
    Hangs like a blue thread loosened from the sky:—
       So this wing'd hour is dropt to us from above.
    Oh! clasp we to our hearts, for deathless dower,
    This close-companioned inarticulate hour
       When twofold silence was the song of love.

                                    Dante Gabriel Rossetti

    May you have a happy and peaceful Friday!
    Ralph Vaughan Williams' setting of the Rossetti text is gorgeous!

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    Some of what's blooming in my garden this bloom day.
    Eccremocarpus scaber
    Leucanthemum superbum A.K.A. Shasta Daisy

    Clematis ‘Evijohill’ Josephine

    Phygelius or Cape Fuchsia

     Romneya coulteri / Matilija Poppy
    Cytisus battandieri / Pineapple Broom.  The flowers smell a little bit like pineapple.


    Begonia boliviensis.  Yes, a pink one! 

    Believe it or not, these double primroses are still blooming  four months later!

    Hardy Fuchsia


    Zantedeschia aethiopica 'White Giant' - White Giant Calla


    Eryngium 'Big Blue'


    They're baaaack!   Abutilon megapotamicum have been blooming for weeks now!

    Another abutilon that made it through the winter.


    Sarracenia bloom.  It's nice that this flower has some modesty and tries to cover up it's reproductive organs!

    Pacific Coast Iris 'Patrick's Copper'

    This may not count because I only brought it home a week or so ago  but Jasminum polyanthum's fragrance makes me smile every time I'm in the vicinity of this plant!

    Zonal geranium (Pelargonum) with interesting and vibrant flowers.

    Nasturtium 'Hermine Grashoff'

    First flush of Brugmansia flowers. 

    Senecio confusus

    Salvia 'Blue Angel'

    Penstemon 'Electric Blue'

    Penstemon 'Margarita Bop'

    No June bloom day would be complete without at least a couple of roses. ("O my luve's like a red, red rose that's newly sprung in June" and all.)

    Garden Bloggers' bloom day is hosted on the fifteenth of each month by Carol at May Dreams Gardens.  Click on over there to see what's blooming across the planet!

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    Here is some of the foliage that I noticed  recently.
    Agave ovatifolia 'Frosty Blue'  got babied inside during the winter;  now we'll see if it can make it in the ground.

    The red table is sort of like a green room for plants waiting to find a place.  Some may spend the summer here but will need to find more attractive pots.

    The Agave weberi that decided to live, the saga of which can be found here with Pelargonum 'Indian Princess.'

    Love variegated grasses!

    Melianthus major  'Antonow's Blue'

    The plant that always reminds me of our host Pam Penick because it's one of her favorites and is featured in her foliage follow-up post this month.  Do click on over to her site  to join in the foliage festival!

    Berberis 'Orange Rocket'  I'm still in love!

    Choisya 'Sundance'  holds this warm gold color all year long.  The bud is that of a purple/blue clematis that  will be blooming soon.

    Fatsia polycarpa 'Needham Lace'  that came from the Cistus area at  the Fabulous Fronderosa Frolic a couple of years ago.  Such a fun road trip and event!  I hope that you denizens of the pacific northwest make plans to attend this year!

    Recently found Callicarpa japonica 'Snow Storm'  If it bears fruit as heavily as it's non variegated relative in my parking strip, there may be an exchange.

    Corydalis scouleri

    Podophyllum  pleianthum

    Variegated Gingko

    Tradescantia pallida 'Pink Stripe'  Just about ready to go in a candy apple red pot when I noticed that  the one from last  year, left outside, is coming back from it's roots.  Cool.

    Arisaema losttagimum
    Happy gardening all!

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    You may recall last week when Alison Bonny Lassie and I set out on a Vashon Island Adventure.  Today, we'll continue the fun with a visit one of my favorite nurseries, (aren't they all?) DIG Floral and Garden.  I posted nearly a year ago about this wonderful place here and pal Loree  posted about her recent visit here.  What more can be said about a nursery that is continually changing and always keeping plant geeks and trendy gardeners inspired?  Well, not much more than WOW.  Of course, I've a fairly limited vocabulary.  Suffice it to say that this is a magical place that has kept me coming back several times a year since they opened 15 years ago!  If you don't believe me,  Val Easton has written about the place several times,  here and  more recently here.
    Sylvia "potmaster" Matlock shows that sometimes a single plant in a container speaks volumes.

    Her ideas are worth stealing and truth be told, I've  bought planted containers  here because they are so beautifully done.

    Less is more with a simple but elegant combination of burgundy and blue.

    Spiky goodness!

    This echiveria  planted left of center in this shallow tray is stunning. Like a huge Dahlia in a mid century painting crossed with an ikebana arrangement. 

    This one particularly tugged at my heart.  The pot, plants, and placement - oh la la, as Cisco might say.

    The container queen always surprises with her interesting choices!
    Just hangin' out. 
    This new piece is incredible.  It creates a feeling of enclosure without shadiness and provides a convenient  place to hang pots and those pesky European chandeliers cluttering up  the garage.  It would also look fabulous covered with any number of climbers.

    Bacchus looks very peaceful.  Must be all the wine.

    This guy also looks pretty peaceful.  Don't know what his excuse is.  I didn't realize that homelessness was an issue on the island but Sylvia and Ross, owners of Dig, are quite charitable letting him stay like this.

    Echiverias never cease to thrill me!  They're like flowers growing on the surface of the ground.

    More succulent goodness.

    I am crazy about the new (2 years old) greenhouse!  This little slice of zone 9 would take up most of my garden.  (I'm eyeing our detached we really need it? )   The incredible stone table that runs down the center has me swooning.  Wouldn't this be an amazing place to display one's plant collection and to entertain?  Picture it -  dramatic lighting, gorgeous plants, this stone table that could seat 40 of your closest friends...

    Did I mention that on Northwest Perennial Alliance Open Garden day, Dig offers a 25% discount to NPA members?  I recouped the price of membership in savings here.  One of these four packs of aloes came home with me.  Aren't they cute?
    Seeing succulents is like visiting the dog pound, each one is so adorable that I want to take them all home. 

    So many plants, so little garden!  Why can't I grow 10 of everything?

    Glass flowers.

    Not a glass peony.

    Nectaroscordum tripedale doing it's downward flowering upward seeding coolness. 
    Another part of the nursery. 

    Merchandising or just great plant combinations?  Who cares?  Cool it down or

    heat it up. 
    Another look at the terrific new structure.
    Going inside to pay for one's purchases is also a treat!  This is my kind of white sale! 

    I like screaming color better though.  It adds so much vibrancy to our gray northwest winters!

    Must go back for some of these cute little potted tillandsias.  Those pots are about an inch and a half tall. 

    Maybe even smaller.  This idea is really fun and would be perfect for the conservatory in your doll house!

    Placing floaters in tall glass containers allows us to appreciate the dramatic root structure. 

    Here are the geniuses  (Genii - we're all about correct Latin nomenclature.) behind DIG:  Sylvia Matlock and Ross Johnson.  Thanks for  15 years of ideas, inspiration, and fun! (O.K. fun for us, I know it's a lot of work for you!)
    Sylvia's joke was saying that she was charging five cents a picture.  Click, "Five Cents."  I'm unsure if that includes all pictures or just the ones that I kept.  Anyway, the 33 here will cost  $1.65 which I'll be sure to remit post haste in the form of one hundred sixty-five loose pennies. 
     Next, we're back on the garden tour. 

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    Much has been written about Froggsong, the garden of Cindy and Steve Stockett. For more articles about the garden you can visit Fine Gardening, The Seattle Times, Country LivingSunset Magazine, and The Beachcomber.  Cindy maintains a blog about her garden which you can visit here.

    In the words of Cindy as published in the NPA guide, "Froggsong garden, a three-acre [Other sources say twelve acres.] estate garden, is a blend of formal and informal design.  A rose pergola, roundel garden, parterre garden and knot garden share a space that frames and defines the senses.  I call this type of garden 'Northwest Formal,' a mixture of defined, structured areas that are relaxed by the casual disorder of perennial cottage gardening." 

    This garden has an interesting juxtaposition of styles sort of like throwing a formal garden,  billowing perennial borders, and a woodland into a blender, mixing it up,  and having Picasso sort it out.

    On entering the garden, one might not suspect what surprises await.  Like a chef garnishing a dish with a little of what might be expected flavor-wise from a creation, we get a small clue of the mix inside this garden with the formal evergreen hedge, acer palmatum, and  free flowing hakenechloa. 

    Here we have more of a clue with the formal element of matching pots flanking the entry but the path is not symmetrical.  Notice the abandon of the perennials on the left side of the walk and the formality of the boxwood on the left. 

    Here's a closer view.  Cindy is a retired elementary school teacher.  I bet her classroom was full of fun surprises.

    Hey look, a pot.  Looks like plants that we just saw at DIG.  Hmmm...coincidence?  I don't think so.

    This view begs for a focal point at the end to draw us on.  Instead we have the mystery of the woods.

    A mix of gold and white variegated foliage.

    Here we have a couple of neatly clipped box hedges looking like parentheses holding back side conversations.  (Works for me.)

    Love this shade of blue here. It's echoed in the hosta in the foreground and spruce behind and contrasted with golden foliage on the left and the purple to the right.

    An area with formally trimmed box but with an informal free-form  shape.  do you want to explore ?  There's a dead end.  What might draw you in here?  Many questions.

    Froggsong has an abundance of beautifully framed vignettes.

    The rose pergola from the side.
    The climbing roses were removed because their canes became too much trouble.
    Here's another example of  Cindy's unique style.  This stream starts higher up and cascades down a naturalistic looking fall into this pond where it suddenly hits this very man-made looking rill.
    That runs past relaxed foliage on the left and uber formal knot garden on the right.
    This empties into this large pond with relaxed naturalistic rock on one side, sharp edges on the other and with wood decking over parts.

    Knot on the left formal circle center containing not a lollypop trimmed tree but something allowed to grow freely.  Notice the spherically trimmed box on the right that provides balance.
    I never thought that I had Attention Deficit Disorder but in this garden, there ware so many areas to explore, so many inspiring plant combinations and so many questions  to ponder, that my mind was racing from one area to the next.

     Again with the gold purple and white variegated foliage - an ostinato that helps to hold the garden composition together.


    My favorite part of the garden is this natural looking pond and marsh area with  weeping willow trees. 

    More old fashioned formality but with a contemporary center.  Instead of being surrounded by formal hedges, the hundred-year old doug firs are the background.


    Love this container with the cascading grevillea!

    The potager also has an echium and lilies.

     Blue poppies grown here with Aruncus dioicus.  The same combination as once existed in the woodland at Heronswood. 

    Love the white variegated tree with fine foliage and the large white variegated hosta beneath.  Notice the partial formally trimmed box shrub on the left.
     Looking out at this unique garden from the deck of the house.  Love the variegated dogwood just left of center. 

    Stunning view!  I love the look of weeping willow trees!  The fabulous foliage colors and shapes here are stunning!  The bisecting line of boxwood spheres, the fireworks of the phormium.  Sigh.

    Round the back of the house is this sweet building that contains a sauna, there's a hot tub nearby and in the background, you can see the glass doors of the huge shower which can also be entered from the master bath.

    That's Corsican mint all round the path.  The fragrance was divine but imagine  tiptoeing through this from hot tub to shower.  It's a beautiful set up but I have to admit to wanting solid walls around me when nekkid.  (The world breathes a collective sigh of relief!0

    Heading back through the front path, we're off to our next stop! 


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    Loree at Danger Garden has been posting weekly for a while about her favorite plant and has invited other bloggers to join in this meme.  Today the plant that is thrilling me and my non gardening partner is  Solanum quitoense.  The  Solanaceae family is large and includes both edible and poisonous members.  Solanum quitoense has gorgeous purple veined furry leaves that  can reach a foot or more in length.  They look cute as a teddy bear but have prickles that are  cleverly hidden on the undersides of the leaves. Solanum quitoense, known as naranjilla (little orange) in Ecuador and Panama and as lulo in Colombia, is a subtropical perennial plant from northwestern South America. The specific name for this species of nightshade means "from Quito."

    Love the purple fur!  Those little round things are flower buds.

    The huge leaves are  quite lovely.

    I've grown this plant for years and have often had it flower but last summer, for the first time, it decided to produce fruit.

    You may remember these images from a post back then.

    The first time I grew this plant, I got it as a tiny thing growing in a six inch pot on a  windowsill at a house where an estate sale was happening about 20 years ago. I think they charged me a dollar for it.  It looked pretty sad but it was a plant mystery that I wanted to solve so I brought it home, potted it up and let it spend the summer outside.  It grew very quickly through several repottings  into a 4 foot beauty!  since that time I've nearly always had one.

    And later as the fruit decided not to abort but began to grow larger.

    The plant, hardy in zones 9 - 12 lives inside my house in the winter.  Look what happened to the  fruits!
    Learn more about the plant here and here and  about the edible fruit here.

    The fruit supposedly has a citrus flavor that is described as a cross between lime and rhubarb.  The juice of this orange fruit is green.  The fruit can be eaten out of hand (the furry outer part is discarded) and the juice is a popular drink in parts of South America.

    The plant, not taller than I, recently got moved back outside for the summer but I don't want to cut it back as usual because of the cool orange fruit.  Because it was in an out of the way room for the winter, the non gardening partner didn't notice the fruits until I moved it outside and he passed it on his way into the house.  While it's got ripening fruit on it,  it's still producing buds to make more.  How sweet is that? 
    Just in case I decide not to schlep the huge plant into the house and up a flight of stairs, there's a smaller one waiting in the wings.  I don't know if I have the heart to leave the big one outside this winter now that it's produced fruit for me. 
    They grow easily from seed and plants  are available seasonally at Cistus Nursery, Annie's Annuals, and others. 

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    Alison's car has a built in GPS which is fabulous for garden tours.  Since heretofore,  most of my driving has been from home to work and other familiar places, I've not thought much about such a device.  When going to strange places, Tom and his smart phone which has a GPS feature are often along.   Being a Luddite, I haven't a cell phone either.  Anyway, Alison's GPS had a friendly voice that seemed very wise and didn't swear once if we didn't do what it advised.  Nice.

    We turned down a driveway and came to a large clearing in the woods surrounded by meadow covered hills currently full of foxglove flowers and parked in the large grassy parking lot and walked through a red gate.  

     where we found a basket full of maps.  Wow, this is a large garden!  The Carharts are situated on a 20-acre wooded parcel, 16 acres of which are in Stewardship Forest.
     The parking lot is at the top of a huge hill which is beautifully planted with a wide variety of unusual shrubs, trees, and perennials.  The flowers on this Calycanthus, one of several varieties on the property, was large and impressive.

    At various points along the path descending into the next levels, there are areas to "pause and reflect."  That's fancy talk for to catch your breath and look at the pretty stuff.
    This area is graced by one of  the several pieces in the garden by island artist Clare Dohna whose work I've admired since first seeing it at DIG years ago.  Ms Dohna's own garden is also spectacular. See more here.

    Dogwood in bloom. So pretty.

    Cardiocrinum preparing to bloom, peonies at it's feet.  The way cardiocrinums bolt so quickly always makes me think of Jack and the Beanstock!

    This part of the garden is on  a fairly steep hill.  I'd never seen stairs quite like these before. 

    They just keep going and going.

    With more areas to pause and reflect.

    That's Alison walking behind the climbing hydrangea.

    The larger path on the other side is a little more gradual. 

    Every step of the way is graced with great plants like this Stipa gigantea.

    Further down we begin to hear the gurgle of water and the incredible pond comes into view. 

     The garden is full of delightful pieces tucked away to be found by lucky visitors.  Here, another of Clare Dohna's mosaics perches on rusty metal circles.

    The boulder outcropping fits the space so well it seems like it might have been an existing natural element.  Truth is, it's only been there for five years.

    The water is not flowing in some sort of roaring waterfall but rather a nice melodic trickle.

    The plants are beautifully grown and expertly chosen to fit spaces.  There are times when this garden  almost feels like it just sprung up this way.  (There must be a really great staff here!)

    Now we're at the pond level.  The water is crystal clear and has a lovely teal color.  There are not plants or fish here and I'm wondering if this is strictly ornamental or if  the owners enjoy swimming here.

    Here's that guy that's been following us around.  He was really impressed with the pond!

    Here's Alison again admiring the island.

    Yup, the pond has an island off on one side.  Look at all of the gorgeous foliage.  Rhododendron's leaf shape and indumentum contrasts beautifully with the color and needles of the conifer on the right.

    So peaceful!

    I fell instantly in love with this rusty metal circle.  One passes through this magic portal/star gate/moon gate to continue down to the next level where the houses and large perennial borders are.

    Geranium palmatum on the right putting on quite a show.

    Here we are on the next level. 

    Another Dohna mosaic.
     Wonderful and huge bench near the front door.

    Sign  in the midst of the sunny perennial borders area.

    Expanse of lawn flanked by wonderful plantings.  That's the bay in the background. 

    Allium, clematis, peonies, delphiniums, and oriental poppies are the stars of the floral  show right now.  Hakonechloa is used liberally in this area of the garden.  and why not?  It's a gorgeous grass!

    Peony and a lovely sarracenia duo.

    Interesting color!

    So beautiful!

    Whimsically painted play house or perhaps garden tool storage.

    On this level there are lovely views of the bay below. 

    And paths leading down to the beach.  We didn't explore these as they aren't mentioned on the map but others did go down to the lowest level of the property.

    Breathtaking Azara  microphylla variegata!  I'm so glad that I put a couple of these in my shade garden.  I wonder if mine will ever be this big and beautiful?

    Round the other side of the house looking toward the guest house and garage.

    Wood storage area with more perennial fabulousness.

    Sculpture installation of girls playing or  dancing.

    Clematis arbor leads to a seating area with brightly painted Adirondack chairs.

    And a lovely view of the bay.

    Hakonechloa "waterfall."  So well done! 

    wonderful shade plants with nice unobtrusive labeling!


    Another large outdoor sculpture.

     I've lost track of where exactly this is but it's grand!  One of the things I love about the PNW is our towering Douglas firs and cedars.

    Hot pink heated up with gold foliage or cooled down with purple foliage.  Beautiful either way so why not both?

    You guessed it Clare Dohna!
    Podophyllum pleianthum with those impossibly glossy leaves.  How can some people not notice how wonderful plants are?

    Looking back up the path at the moon gate.

     Crinodendron hookerianum.

    We walked the driveway back up to the top of the garden and saw this potting shed.

    Which looks to have been a temple at one time.  So lovely and unexpected.  The doors are intricately carved!

    And here we are at the red gate again.
    There was a gentle continuity about this garden.  Area flowed into area and while there were stunning features, they appeared organically and didn't seem to be imposed upon the space.  This is a garden whose design seems to have been considered as a whole and the placement of new elements done in an unobtrusive way.  While this is  quite a grand garden, which is beautifully maintained, there seemed to be a feeling of ease and hospitality about it.  Although the map was handy so that nothing was missed, the garden itself seemed to beckon the visitor to follow paths in certain directions.   I was not left asking questions about why certain things were done as they were because the answer was clear:  Because it's beautiful and it makes sense.
    Be sure to check out Bonney Lassie's post about this garden here.
    Here's a power point tour of the garden last year from Youtube.  Interesting to notice the changes!
    To learn more about this ambitious garden and it's maker, go here.

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    The NPA Open Gardens book called this tour "A Veritable Variety: The Vashon Gardens Tour" and whoever selected these gardens did a terrific job in choosing gardens which were each  so different from one another and all so marvelous!  
    Alison, my partner in horticultural trespassing,  posted about this garden here. We knew we were in for a special experience at this garden when this was the parking area!  Do you see the face in the clouds?  Quite an impressive security guard!
    This informal and gorgeous shrubbery provides privacy for a side garden.

    Are we still in Washington?  Just beyond is this large dracaena in full bloom, a fairly unusual sight in these parts!
    Approaching the front garden.

    Phormiums not bothered by the Phormium killing winters but that were chopped way back a few years ago because they had gotten too big. 

    At half an acre, this was the smallest garden on the tour but oh my gosh, there are so many great plants and interesting features in this space that it took us as long to enjoy this one as it did to take in the larger gardens!  They say that it's not the size that matters but how one uses it.  That's certainly true in this gorgeous and imaginative garden!
    So much to love!
     Here we are along the paver and gravel labyrinth.

    Arriving at the center of the same.

    A garden is incomplete without at least one dog and or cat!  This little guy is doing a great job of keeping the sheep in a nice orderly herd.  (Lambs ears edging the circular bed, get it?)

    There are several mosaic pieces throughout the garden.  They get so much fan mail here that they need a separate mail box  just for them.  Pretty special I'd say!
    There is something hidden in every corner of this garden!

    The view from the front garden is pretty sweet, too!

    Love this!  Finally something to do with all those broken off bottle tops left from baroom brawls! 

    I visited this garden a few years ago with friends when it was part of another tour.  We were all quite taken with the generous use of Baby's Tears (Soleirolia soleirolii) in several areas.  It's so very green and happy looking!

    Which path to choose?

    Gratuitous plant sex image.  The plant in this case is an oriental poppy.

    A colorful glazed ceramic pole.
     Imaginative reuse of all sorts of items can be found in abundance here!

     Behind the house is a delightful dining area.

    Further along the garden path.

    On the porch looking out.  Notice the human look of the emerging bloom spike of the yucca.

    You have been warned!

    Looking out over the giant chess set. 

    On the shady side of the house.

    Back around the front we pass the giant phormiums which are preparing to bloom.
     Like Alison, I found the cone mulched bed interesting.

    After touring the final garden, we did some shopping in town and had a delicious dinner at The Hardware Store, a restaurant located in Vashon's oldest commercial building that had operated as a hardware store for most of its 121 years of existence.  In addition to the fun story, delightful ambience, and art gallery space, they serve great food!

    After dinner it was time to catch the ferry home.  You'll notice that the sky, very grey this morning,  is now blue,  the sun shining golden on the madrona branches.  Boarding the ferry, we end another Lassie and Outlaw Adventure.  Thanks for coming along with us on this trip to one of my favorite places!

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  • 06/25/13--06:00: So, The Other Day...
  • We were driving home from something,  and passed a parking strip full of plants including some still in their nursery pots.  I exclaimed with some joy, "There's a plant addict!"  and made a mental note to return to investigate further.  My mental note taking isn't what it used to be.  These days it seems like I'm writing on an upside-down  Etch-a-sketch.  By some miracle, I remembered  the location and went back for a closer look.

    A garden after my own heart!  Every space stuffed and planted way to close together, potted plants plunked in the beds and even more plants waiting to find a place.

    Dracunculus vulgaris was blooming in the parking strip but the lovely fragrance was not present.

    Some potted edibles out on the sidewalk.

    Plants that look like they came from recent nursery visits and are waiting to be planted.  Gosh this looks familiar!

    Out in the parking strip was this cool cracked pot with a heap of sempervivum starts.  Wonder what the eventual plan is?
     Here's a view down the sidewalk between the front yard and the parking strip.  Heaven!

    A view from the street.  Finding this garden of plant passion encouraged me to do some further exploration in the hood.

    I've admired this tetrapanax grove from the car for several months but until today didn't stop.

    There's a nice rock walkway through the big leaf forest.

    Persicarias and grasses... Does  Scott  have a place in Tacoma that he's not telling us about?  No, couldn't be as there's some bare soil here.

    Another view of the Tetrapanax.  I love those big leaves alongside grasses and the acer palmatum that echoes the Tetrapanax leaf shape but on a much smaller, finer, and purpler level.
     Also catching my eye while Alison and I were on our way out of my neighborhood  headed toward one of our adventures was a large bed of poppies.  While I was out exploring, I thought I'd check that out too!
    I love  Papaver somniferum and have grown them in my parking strip for years but people steal all of the seed heads when they're still green.  Clearly they aren't interested in seed or they'd wait until they naturally dried.  No, the freaks in my neighborhood pick the green heads to make some concoction.  I wouldn't so much mind except that they've taken every head for so long that I no longer have the plants as this is a reseeding annual.   One summer there was a young woman who regularly visited with a plastic bag and harvested.  I asked her to stop and she said that she knew the owners of the house and they said that she could.  On another occasion, when asked to cease she informed me that she wasn't hurting the plants at all but just taking the seed pods and besides, they're on the street so anyone can take them.  I tried to explain the concept of reseeding annuals but this didn't seem to make a dent.  Ignorance and crust, what a lovely combination. She simply thought she had the right to take whatever she wanted.  She never quit  and it turns out that she lived not far from our house.  A year or so later we were at a gathering in our neighborhood and she was introduced as the best friend of  someone I knew.  They delighted in telling me in giggly tones about how they practiced witchcraft. I wanted to inform them that stealing and lying are not consistent with the practice of Wicca but that might have gone over the heads of these particular twenty-somethings. 

    Sorry for the rant but I'm a curmudgeon, it's what I do.   I've heard from other gardeners that the stealing of the green seed heads is a problem whenever this is planted in public view.   Have you had any experience with growing these and having them pilfered, filched, lifted, appropriated, snatched, plundered, stolen?
    Anyway, bright sunny day and who should stop by for a visit but a happy honey bee or two.
    There are several folks in the hood who keep honey bees and it always makes me happy to see them buzzing around. 

    All done here, gotta fly!

    Hope you enjoyed these  random visits! 
    For some gorgeous images if this poppy used in a mixed planting, go here.


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    I'm joining blog pal Loree of Danger Garden in posting my favorite plant this week. 

    If you've been reading my blog since I began, you may remember this saga spanning over twenty years  of plant discovery, lust, unrequited love, yearning, and at long last love (thank you Mr. Porter)  all about Tropaeolum speciosum, my favorite plant this week and most frustrating plant to grow ever!

    Here are some pictures of the long awaited happy blooming wonderful plants blooming their heads off among the golden hops and honeysuckle vines.  This was the most vigorous and floriferous year I'd ever had with these puppies that I'd been planting over and over again in as many different areas of my garden as possible.

     I was overjoyed that this one seemed to be happy and decided to stay in my garden because people say that once you have it, you have it!  Imagine my disappointment  this year when this year I didn't see a single leaf of this beauty anywhere!  RATS!  (You know Tropaeolum tuberosum is much more dependable and comes up every year exactly where I planted it!  Why can't you be more like your cousin?)

    On Sunday morning, I looked out of the back porch and what did I see in the spot where I planted the first roots of this plant in this garden 16 years ago?  You guessed it!   Interestingly the color on these seems to be more on the blue side.  I don't know if this is one of the Heronswood original roots or one of the subsequent ones sent from Scotland that I planted there.  The top images are of plants from Far Reaches Farm.  Also the top ones are in full sun while the following are in only part sun.  I remember the originals  growing, blooming gloriously, setting seed  and then very rapidly dying never to return again until now. Is it possible that the tiny vines have been sending out growth each year and gaining strength to bloom again? 

    Could it be that this is a vine that grew from one of the seeds that fell on the ground and took a long time to germinate?  (15 years is a long time!) 
    Just  like in  the song "Scarlett Ribbons" sung by Doris Day, Harry Belafonte, Jim Reeves, The Browns, The Brothers Four, Joan Baez, Sinead O'Conner,and just about everyone else
    "If I live to be a hundred
    I will never know from where
    Came those lovely scarlet ribbons
    Scarlet ribbons for her hair..."
    (vermillion ribbons doesn't fit quite so well and isn't as schmaltzy)
    Here for your listening pleasure are the lovely Lennon Sisters.  Wunnerful, wunnerful.  (If you're too young to get the reference, bless your heart and please remember to come visit me at the home in a few years!)
    Anyway, I'll keep watching all of the spots where this plant has appeared over the years.  Let's hope that the sightings are more frequent that those of the Flying Dutchman!
    Loree always puts lots of great information about her favorites in her posts.  I'm too lazy for that but here's what Fine Gardening has to say about this plant:
    Botanical Name:Tropaeolum speciosumtroe-pay-OH-lum spee-see-OH-sumCommon Name: Flame nasturtium, Scottish flame flowerGenus:Tropaeolum
    This tender perennial climber has edible, hand-shaped leaves and crimson red flowers in summer and fall which are uniquely textured. Their softly squared petals are held apart from each other at the flower's mouth and the rear tapers to long spurs. The blooms yield blue fruits. Flame nasturtium climbs up to 10 feet.Noteworthy characteristics: These tender perennials are native to Central and South America. Some species are bushy or trailing; they are suitable for garden edges, herb gardens, covering banks, hanging baskets, and other containers.Care: Grow in moist, well-drained soil in full sun to partial shade. T. speciosum prefers a cool, shady root run.Propagation: Sow fresh seed in pots in a cold frame.Problems: Caterpillars, flea beetles, black aphids, slugs, whiteflies, viruses.
    Height 6 ft. to 10 ft.
    Spread 6 ft. to 10 ft.
    Growth Habit Clumps
    Growth Pace Fast Grower
    Light Full Sun to Part Shade
    Moisture Medium Moisture
    Maintenance Low
    Characteristics Attracts Butterflies; Attracts Hummingbirds; Fragrant Flowers; Self Seeds; Showy Flowers; Showy Foliage; Showy Fruit; Showy Seed Heads
    Bloom Time Fall; Summer
    Flower Color Red Flower
    Uses Beds and Borders, Container, Ground Covers, Cut Flower, Indoor Plant, Naturalizing, Screening, Specimen Plant/ Focal Point, Suitable as Annual, Trellis
    Style Herb Garden, Cottage Garden
    Seasonal Interest Summer Interest, Fall Interest
    Type Perennials  (Zone 7 - 10)

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  • 06/27/13--06:00: Has it been a year already?

  • It was a year ago today that I first hit the orange publish button on blogger and began my journey as a blogger.  I'd read a lot of blogs and even commented on some but didn't think I'd have much to say that would be of interest to other folks on a blog of my own.  At the urging of Ms. Danger, I started anyway.   A year and 276 posts later, I still don't know if I'll run out of things to post about but  for the time being, I'm having fun.  Perhaps in the future I won't post five days a week as I have this year.  The most interesting thing about blogging has been meeting other gardeners and feeling like a part of a community of like minded (and perhaps misguided) souls who love to get their hands dirty.  In reading blogs from around the country and world, I've gained a broader understanding of and appreciation for the differences in regional garden styles, plant palettes, and practices.  In reading blogs from my own region, I've learned about exciting new plants to try in my garden.  Thank you all for reading my blog, leaving comments, welcoming me to the blogosphere and helping me to gain more knowledge of plants and gardening!

     I was thinking of doing  a drawing for this post but will do that for my 300th post.   Instead, today I'll post about a visit to Jungle Fever, a nursery and plantsman (Jerry Cearley) who have been instrumental in my green education and formation as a gardener and plant fanatic over the last 20 or so years. 

    Jungle Fever is a small nursery specializing in hardy exotics.  Originally I was drawn here by the huge fragrant flowers of brugmansias but came to love the many tropical appearing large leaved plants that are surprisingly hardy here.  Jungle Fever has always carried a lot of beautiful  Australian natives and desert plants from our own continent  like cacti and agaves.  It wasn't until recently that I started appreciating those and later than that that I began to like palms, another Jungle Fever staple.  A visit to this nursery, 15 minutes from my house, is like stepping into a mini tour of jungles and deserts of the world. Once inside, it's difficult  to remember  that we're just yards from a busy street!   When the big Restio craze hit, Jungle fever was there to supply our plant lust and on this visit, I noticed some great Rhodocoma capensis! Carnivorous and other bog/water plants play on the sales tables  along with a fairly specialized offering of  great annuals that you won't find at a box store.

    Just outside the entrance was this grevillea  in gorgeous bloom.  Cisco Morris learned about this group of plants and their hardiness in our region from Jerry. 

    Jungle fever also has some funky  garden art!

    I'll shut up now and let you look around a little. 

    Agave alba mediopicta

    Spiky goodness

    Agave lophantha 'Quadricolor'

    Agave  parryi

    Yucca rostrata

    Some of the tables of small perennials and unusual annuals.

    Hedychium 'Tara'

    Schefflera delavayi


    And a familiar cordyline admirer

    Giant papyrus which came home with me.

    Baby Tetrapanax

    Clematis 'Early Sensation'


    There's something here for everyone!  O.K. every gardener.

    There's even a nice inside space with a collection of less than hardy beauties.

    This keeps following me around!   I'll probably succumb eventually.

    Roses and palms, what a nice combination!

    Jerry's garden is just behind the nursery and a stroll up the sidewalk should not be missed.

    The house sits on a corner lot.  On one side there are large plants that provide shade and on the other side is a dry sunny garden that looks more like something from southern California than it does a garden in the Pacific Northwest.

    Beautiful 30-year-old Agave parryi

    Details make all the difference!

    We'll stop here to admire the remains of  last year's agave bloom stalk about which you can read here.
    Also no longer  with us this year is Jerry's partner Darlene Allard who died suddenly just before Christmas.  It was she who created all of the exquisite mosaic, fused glass, and beaded work around the nursery.  Her sense of humor and talent will be sorely missed.
    If you're in the area, especially during the summer, this is a special place and wonderful nursery not to be missed.  Thanks Jerry and Darlene for all these years of friendship, great plants,  education, and inspiration!

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    Char's garden is  one that I pass by several times a week but seldom have time to stop.  Last September, I walked by with my camera and was glad that I did.  You can read that post here.  Following are a few shots taken  from the sidewalk  during a recent walk in the hood. This garden is full of color throughout the season!

    I don't often think of combining pink and red for some reason.  It is sure gorgeous here and the lavender hosta blooms keeps the color family well rounded while the yellow livens things up.

    Peonies have just finished and we see a dahlia growing to cover its wood supports.  These were beautiful in bloom last year! 

    The use of potted plants allows for rearranging if the desire strikes.


    This beauty simply glows!  

    I wonder how deep the buried pot is.  do you suppose it's got a liner in it to retain water for the Iris  ensata?  The look of the ornamental rim just above soil level is attractive.


    Looking down the walk, you can see tetrapanax in the garden of a neighbor.   Better check that out!

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  • 07/01/13--06:00: The Garden of Terri Dufault
  • Another Northwest Perennial Alliance Open Garden Saturday found the Lassie and the Outlaw poking around the Gig Harbor area  and having an enjoyable day of garden touring.  Today, we'll look at Terri Dufault's garden.   Situated on a hill overlooking Puget sound and the Olympic mountains, this garden utilizes beautifully colored foliage very well.  I'd never seen a deep purple berberis hedge before and this one was impressive in size and color!  I wonder if the thorns are an effective deer deterrent?

    Fremontodendron greeted us at the bottom of the hill.

    There were a variety of paths to explore all leading to oodles of interesting plants.
     Another view up . 

    A dry creek bed, complete with dry fish, bisects the front xeric gardens. 

    Beautiful basalt water feature and dig the cool rock work all around it!
     Unfortunately we didn't meet Terri to express our appreciation and ask a million questions.  I'd certainly like to know the story of these as I think they're awesome!
     A view from the top of the garden.  Don't know if I'd want to drive down this hill on an icy winter morning.  Fortunately we don't have very many of those and when we do, lots of things close down or start late.

    If given the choice, would you prefer living up high like this with gorgeous panoramic views or would you opt to live closer to the water's edge (also could have gorgeous views?)  

    Fortunately for us, we had a perfect sunny day for an outing.  Unfortunately, the direct sun isn't the best for photographing a garden.   Notice the hardy fuchsia on the left. 

    More gorgeousness.

    There's a stream in there ending in a pond.

     A tropical themed area  being protected from hungry deer.

    The edible plant area also has a high fence around it.  I guess that these folks want to eat their produce themselves.  Silly, right?

    Around the other side of the house. 
     One of my favorite parts of this garden was seeing all of these plants waiting to find places in the garden.  She's one of us!

    There were tags from some of my favorite nurseries like Dig and Cistus.  Hmmm...

    More stars waiting in the green room for their chance to shine.  Plant addiction problem?  What plant addiction problem?

    If I enjoy Cotinus coggygria in someone else's garden, is it considered second hand smoke?
    Happy Monday!

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  • 07/02/13--06:00: Hot and Cool
  • We're back out on the street in the hood today.  Here's a house, painted a rather cool green color hot colored flowers all around it.
    Got distracted by the gorgeous California poppies abuzz with bumble bees.

     Love these warm colors!  They just scream summer to me!

    Here's a home painted a warm gold color that has flowers that run more to the cool side of the spectrum. 

    And they're right next to  each other.  Do you suppose the gardeners are friends? 

    I remember passing the gold house on a regular basis many years ago (over 20) and the planting scheme was similar but perhaps with more pelargoniums.  Some gardeners are fickle, our tastes changing over time and with new plant passions; others know what they like and stick with it! 
    Is there a story here or just  a couple of gardens? 

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  • 07/03/13--06:00: Wordless Wednesday

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    O.K. so this is also a my favorite plant this week post but there were two and I don't know anything about the second plant. Anyway, for more  favorite plant this week posts, check out Danger Garden the host of this movable meme.
    First up is  Kalmia latifolia.  I've had three of these for several years.  I bought them blooming in their pots, planted them and then just got lots of  lovely evergreen foliage.  Hmm.  I was just thinking that they might want more sun  & was going to move them out to the parking strip when this year, what should happen?  This one decided to bloom.  I love the shape of the buds almost more than the flowers themselves!   They kind of look like fireworks don't they?

    There are several varieties of these ranging in flower color from white through pink and purple with variations and interesting petal patterns on the flowers.  Eventual height and spread is 6' to 10' and it's hardy in zones 4a to 9b.  To learn more go here.
    Look here for more images of this cool bloomer. 
    Next up is  this Lilium  'i've-got-the-tag-around-here-somewhereium'  that came from Far Reaches Farm last year, planted in shade which  has not only bloomed again but doubled in size. While this particular color combination might not be something I'd be gaga about, it's pretty wonderful in the shade picking up the purples in Podophyllum delavayi and throwing in a nice zing of orange. 

    More fireworks.
    Hope you continue to have wonderful garden surprises and a great Independence Day!


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  • 07/05/13--06:00: Visiting Raft Island Roses

  • On one of our Saturday adventures, Alison and I visited Raft Island Roses in Gig Harbor.  If you live in the greater Tacoma area, you may be familiar with the name as these folks sell their roses at several farmers' markets. 

    It had been years since last I visited  RIR but the memory of  rose perfume delighting my olfactory receptors was strong.

    I know very little about roses and always say that they're really not my thing but somehow, there are quite a few of them in my garden.    These lovely and fragrant climbers cover the fence of the old parking area.

    I went looking for a Westerland rose but they were out.  Joy Creek's inventory says that they have 36.  Alison and I need to go to Portland anyway.  Some sources say that Westerland has a strong fragrance; others say that it's a light fragrance everyone agrees that it blooms freely and beautifully. 
    Lots of gorgeous roses at this nursery and some surprises that you'll see closer to the end of the post.  Labeling was sometimes hard to find or missing but the staff knew the rose names.
    Chrysler Imperial

    Taboo (guessing)

    La Rose Complète    -     Rainer Maria Rilke   
    J’ai une telle conscience de ton
    être, rose complète,
    que mon consentement te confond
    avec mon coeur en fête.
    Je te respire comme si tu étais,
    rose, toute la vie,
    et je me sens l’ami parfair
    d’une telle amie.

    I have such awareness of your
    being, perfect rose,
    that my will unites you
    with my heart in celebration.
    I breathe you in, rose,
    as if you were all of life,
    and I feel the perfect friend
    of a perfect friend.
     Contre Qui, Rose,
    avez-vous adopté
    ces épines?
    Votre joie trop fine
    vous a-t-elle forcée
    de devenir cette chose
    Mais de qui vous protège
    cette arme exagérée?
    Combien d’ennemis vous ai-je
    qui ne la craignaient point?
    Au contraire, d’été en automne,
    vous blessez les soins
    qu’on vous donne.
    Double Delight

    Against whom rose,
    have you assumed these thorns?
    Is it your too fragile joy
    that forced you to become
    this armed thing?
    But from whom does it protect you,
    this exaggerated defence?
    How many enemies have I
    lifted from you who did not fear it at all.
    On the contrary, from summer to autumn
    you wound the affection
    that is given you.
     Abandon entouré d’abandon,
    tendresse touchant aux tendresses…
    C’est ton intérieur qui sans cesse
    se caresse, dirait-on;
    se caresse en soi-même,
    par son propre reflet éclairé.
    Ainsi tu inventes le thème
    du Narcisse exaucé.
     Abandon surrounding abandon,
    Tenderness touching tenderness…
    Your oneness endlessly
    Caresses itself, so they say;
    through its own clear reflection.
    Thus you invent the theme
    of Narcissus fulfilled.
     Rainbow Sorbet
    Several of Rilke's Rose poems have been set to music by Morton Lauridsen.  Click below to hear the entire cycle.
    Or click here to listen only to Dirait-on, the very popular final song.

    Red Intuition really grabbed my attention!   The buds look similar in coloration to a broken tulip.

    This one is just starting to open and the outer petals have a green stripe down the middle.  The broken coloration seems to be more subtle on the inner petals but we'll have to see what happens as it opens and ages.

    Unfortunately there were no blooms fully open.  This almost came home with me but it's a hybrid tea...'nuf said?  It had incredibly long and strong stems for each flower & a few dozen bushes of this would be fabulous for those of you who have an acre or two devoted to a cutting garden.  Still, it was very pretty.  Maybe a return visit is in order.

    Look at some of the other surprises we found here.  Some of these non roses came home with us!

    These had no label and the nice young person working there only knew that it was called a Pregnant Onion.  It was kind of interesting so Albuca bracteata came home with me. 
     And look at what Alison found!  Also without label, this Manfreda was pretty sweet!
     These were simply labeled "Agave." 
    I also bought a Fallopia japonica 'variegata'  because it's beautiful and there's nothing quite as fun as asking garden guests if they've noticed your Fallopia.   The prices of the plants we bought were incredibly low.  We each got 3-4 large plants and spent less than $20.00.  They've lots of stuff in the greenhouses below that will be coming up to the sales areas soon.  I'll be visiting this place more frequently!   

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