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Articles on this Page
- 08/23/17--06:00: _Wednesday Vignette ...
- 08/24/17--06:00: _The Garden of Greg ...
- 08/25/17--06:00: _Late Summer In The ...
- 08/28/17--05:37: _In A Vase On Monday
- 08/29/17--06:00: _Saturday Afternoon ...
- 08/30/17--06:00: _Wednesday Vignette ...
- 08/31/17--06:00: _Visiting South Seat...
- 09/01/17--06:00: _A Gardener Gardens!
- 09/04/17--06:00: _In A Vase On Monday
- 09/05/17--06:00: _End of Month Favori...
- 09/06/17--06:00: _Wednesday Vignette ...
- 09/07/17--06:00: _The Normandy Park N...
- 09/08/17--06:00: _The Garden of Karen...
- 09/11/17--06:00: _In A Vase On Monday
- 09/12/17--06:00: _Cascade Cactus and ...
- 09/13/17--06:00: _Wednesday Vignette
- 09/14/17--06:00: _Sometimes A Light S...
- 09/15/17--06:00: _Garden Bloggers' Bl...
- 09/18/17--06:00: _In A Vase On Monday...
- 09/19/17--06:00: _Mark Henry's Garden
- 09/20/17--06:00: _Wednesday Vignette ...
- 09/21/17--06:00: _McAuliffe's Valley ...
- 09/22/17--06:00: _Myrna Torrie's Seat...
- 09/25/17--06:00: _In a Vase on Monday...
- 09/26/17--06:00: _Random Outlaw Fun
- 08/23/17--06:00: Wednesday Vignette - Celebrity Sighting
- 08/24/17--06:00: The Garden of Greg Olsen & Avery Denise Armstrong
- 08/25/17--06:00: Late Summer In The Outlaw Garden
- 08/28/17--05:37: In A Vase On Monday
- 08/29/17--06:00: Saturday Afternoon at Jungle Fever Exotics Nursery
- 08/30/17--06:00: Wednesday Vignette and A Nice Surprise
- 08/31/17--06:00: Visiting South Seattle College Arboretum
- 09/01/17--06:00: A Gardener Gardens!
- 09/04/17--06:00: In A Vase On Monday
- 09/05/17--06:00: End of Month Favorites
- 09/06/17--06:00: Wednesday Vignette - Remember When?
- 09/07/17--06:00: The Normandy Park Neighborhood Garden Festival and Plant Sale
- 09/08/17--06:00: The Garden of Karen Guzak and Warner Blake
- 09/11/17--06:00: In A Vase On Monday
- 09/12/17--06:00: Cascade Cactus and Succulent Society's Odd Plant Sale 2017
- 09/13/17--06:00: Wednesday Vignette
- 09/14/17--06:00: Sometimes A Light Surprises
- 09/15/17--06:00: Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day September 2017
- 09/18/17--06:00: In A Vase On Monday - From Heronswood With Love
- 09/19/17--06:00: Mark Henry's Garden
- 09/21/17--06:00: McAuliffe's Valley Nursery
- 09/22/17--06:00: Myrna Torrie's Seattle Garden
- 09/25/17--06:00: In a Vase on Monday - A Season of Neglect
- 09/26/17--06:00: Random Outlaw Fun
Wednesday Vignette is hosted by Anna at Flutter and Hum. Click on over there to see what caught the eye of other participants.
It's always nice to discover that a well-known figure shares an interest in gardening. Prince Charles, for instance, is an avid gardener. Imagine my surprise, while shopping at Molbak's Nursery earlier this summer to see Marge Simpson looking quite at home among the plants. While she'd dyed her trademark blue hair a different color to fit in with the crowd, the coiffure was unmistakable. You grow girl!
Back on July First Greg Olsen and Avery Denise Armstrong opened their garden for the Northwest Perennial Alliance and I was lucky enough to visit. The glare of late afternoon sun was not particularly conducive to taking good garden pictures.
"Our garden is now 4 years old. The previous garden had to be removed when the old house was demolished to make way for the new contemporary and accessible house that now occupies the site. Visitors to the garden are greeted by the sunny golden leaves of Robinia pseudoacacia 'Frisa.'"
"The new garden is in many ways a reflection of the house; it focuses on sustainability, ease of care, and accessibility."
"To make your way into the sunken garden visitors can stroll or roll their way down an accessible gravel ramp that is bordered by all silver foliaged plants including multiple varieties of lavenders, sedums, and nepetas."
"Also on hand in the front and back gardens are numerous pots filled with a combination of showy annuals and fun perennials."
Greg reports that this Rhodocoma capensis spent the winter outside in this pot and didn't miss a beat.
While the days are still warm, they are becoming noticeably shorter, lawns are turning a bit less green (okay brown) and most of the perennial floral fireworks have fizzled. Annuals are still blooming like there's no tomorrow but some plants are looking a bit tired.
Fall is only 28 days away. Summer is never long enough is it? Albizia julibrissin (Mimosa) continues to pump out pom-pom blooms and throw them all over the ground and into the pond.
Clerodendrum bungei 'Cashmere Bouquet' likes to spread everywhere but is forgiven because of it's late and fragrant blooms. The bush with white flowers is Clerodendrum trichotomum but it's different from the other two in my garden. The calyxes of this one are white to pink and the leaves are furrier and lighter in color. It's also just blooming now (along with C.t. 'Carnival' (dark pink calyxes, variegated widerfolaige) while the other one, is just about done.
Seems like the Colchicum autumnale are a bit later than usual this year as they're usually going strong on the 27th. The first are just poking their noses above ground.
Plumbago auriculata looking fresh. Too bad I don't really have room for this sweet thing. Surprisingly, it continues to live even though it's crammed between a bunch of other plants.
Musa 'Ai Ai' which pouted (looked quite dead) when the greenhouse door was left open overnight this winter has finally made a comeback.
Paulownia tomentosa trees are heavy with seed pods and the raccoons visit the fig tree nightly for snacks. Spiders are growing larger, their webs more visible as mornings begin to spangle them with dewy moisture. Change is in the air.
Many thanks to the creative and dedicated Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting In A Vase On Monday! Be sure to use the link above to visit her blog and see what others have expertly arranged or unceremoniously plunked into a container to enjoy this week.
Can it be the last Monday of August already? The last few weeks have been busy with getting ready for the beginning of school and the start of the choir year. It's funny, I've done both for over thirty years and I still worry that on the first day, I won't know what to do. It's a bit like planting a garden. Each September a new group of seeds arrives and the gardener's job is to create an appropriate environment, provide consistent attention and care, and stand back and admire what each is capable of becoming.
On Sunday, the decision was finally made to severely cut back an Arctostaphylos in the parking strip that had stubbornly decided to fall over and grow sideways. While it looked lovely, it was beginning to take up the better part of a parking space on the street. I'd tied, propped, begged, and cajoled it to grow in the opposite direction but to no avail. The main trunk and several branches simply had to be cut. There is still a bit of it left and hopefully it'll grow up rather than out. It seemed fitting that a few small bits would make their way into a vase.
Joining the vase, which came from a neighbor's estate sale, is a bit of amethyst, a favorite stone of my grandmother, which is supposed to rid one's home of negative energy, help with grief and loss, and bring stability and inner strength.
Every great once in a while Jerry, the owner of Jungle Fever, takes a few hours off and I get to play at the nursery. Since it's a dream of mine to work at a nursery in retirement or own one if I ever win the lottery, it's a real treat to step in and get to chat with people about the wonders of plants. Of course the camera came with me. Here's a sliver of what's to be seen at this magical place, a unique mix of unusual plants and garden art. While the nursery has changed over the years, the cool vibe remains constant.
I have one of these that Darlene, Jerry's former partner, started before she died. Perhaps this winter, I'll get around to finishing it.
Jerry has found quite a few of these painted rocks on his walks. They're part of the Tacoma Rocks project inspired by the Kindness Rocks Project.
While it may have started with just a few folks, there are now all kinds of people painting rocks and hiding them for others to find, keep or re hide. I've even found a couple in my parking strip.
One of the things I love about the nursery is that it feels like walking through a garden except here, it's not considered poor form to pick up a plant that you like and take it to your own garden.
My Mahonia gracilipes reliably blooms but has never produced berries. Do you suppose they have better fruit set with two? One of these berry-laden beauties came home with me to test the hypothesis.
While I resisted the cacti, in addition to the Mahonia, a couple native Adiantum pedatum (Northern Maidenhair Fern) came home with me along with a Clematis and a Bignonia capreolata ‘Tangerine Beauty.’
It's a pleasure to spend several hours poking around as there are so many plants that it's easy to miss a treasure or two in just a short visit.
A new batch of carnivorous plants from Courting Frogs had me drooling but I already have quite a few.
Jungle Fever was the first place in the area that used bowling balls extensively throughout their space about 15 years ago.
Wednesday Vignette is hosted by my pal Anna at Flutter and Hum. Click on over there to see vignettes from other participating bloggers!
We're accustomed to summer drought in the Pacific Northwest but we'd all like to see a bit of rain.
The Surprise was this blog post on my pal Tatyana's blog about her visit to my garden in July. Thanks Tatyana for sharing the beautiful pictures and very kind words.
"The Arboretum at South Seattle College is a five-acre botanical collection with several distinct gardens throughout. The Coenosium Garden is highly regarded as one of the best collections of dwarf conifers in the U.S."
"Established in 1978, in response to requests from the landscape/horticulture students, the Arboretum has been designed, built, and maintained by the students over the years. It continues to serve as a living laboratory for students of many interests and majors at the college and as a public garden. "
I was fascinated by this large drained water feature. The water couldn't have been gone too long as the plants inside were still green.
Suddenly at a clearing, this surprise. I'd no idea that The Seattle Chinese Garden was also part of this campus and the guide book said nothing about it. Not knowing if this was a public garden or not, I approached with caution.
Luckily there was a very nice and knowledgeable man working here who told me that there are regional differences in types of traditional Chinese gardens. (I'd mentioned that Portland's Lan Su Garden seemed very different.) This open plaza style originates in a different part of the country.
When all of these peonies are in bloom this must be spectacular. (There's a peony and bamboo festival in May.)
It was a hot day in July and I'd just finished visiting some gardens up north. Having emptied my water bottle, I decided to stop by a Seven Eleven store on busy highway 99 to grab something to drink. On my way back to the plantmobile, a bit of color caught my eye behind the fenced store dumpsters.
The juxtaposition of joyful cottage garden full of brilliant colors against the hot asphalt parking lot and chain link fence was thrilling.
The words of Les Brake asked about his stunning zone 3 garden (he'd moved from much warmer Texas) echoed in my mind, "A gardener gardens."
This is just what was visible from the parking lot of the store as I wasn't bold enough to go into the garden.
In a Vase on Monday is hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden. Click over there to see what others are popping in a vase to enjoy inside this week.
No blooms made it into my vase this week, just a combination that I first saw in a pot at Jungle Fever many years ago and copied: Corokia cotoneaster, Arum italicum, and Ophiopogon planiscapus 'Nigrescens.' The Black Mondo Grass was growing in a crack in the path and will get a nicer home once it's time in the vase is over.
The vase is a thrift store find. Joining it is a titanium quartz crystal and a bird made by Cindy Jenkins.
Yes, it is the beginning of the month but I always forget the final Friday of the month when Danger invites everyone to share their current favorites so I'm sharing them now instead.
Brugmansia 'Snowbank' has been pretty stingy with it's flowers this season but who cares with foliage like that?
When the sun shines through the foliage of Begonia 'Gene Daniels,' it's glorious. I've rooted a cutting from this big plant to hold over winter.
New to me and just blooming now is Hemiboea subcapitata. Common name is Glossy False Sinningia
It was the glossy foliage of this Chinese native that caught my eye but flowering at this time of year is pretty swell too. To learn more look here.
Wednesday Vignette is hosted by the delightful and talented Anna at Flutter and Hum. Flutter on over there and see what all the hum is about this week!
Remember when the sky was a beautiful clear blue, the sun wasn't red and it wasn't snowing ash? On On a beautiful day in July I had the pleasure of visiting Karen Brindley's garden in Indianola, designed by our favorite cowboy, Shayne Chandler. Notice the yellow Tibetan prayer flags on the left side of the image; they're a clue as to who gardens next door. Stay tuned for a full tour of this stunning garden. Maybe I should save it for a soggy winter day...
The Galicic family hosted the sixth annual Normandy Park Neighborhood Garden Festival and Plant Sale, an event to which I look forward each year. Justin, who writes the blog Growing Steady, designed and built the garden at his parents' home and, although he now lives at his own place, he still comes back to help his parents from time to time. The festival has something for everyone to enjoy, even children and non-gardeners. See previous posts, with better images here and here. This year, the midday sun and blue skies were pleasant but not so great for taking pictures.
The first thing one sees from the street are raised beds full of some prickly characters. It's been a thrill watching this Agave ovatifolia get larger each year.
Is that Agave 'Mr. Ripple' in front of the Butia capitata? I'm tempted to leave mine outside this winter.
These boulders as well as the others in the garden are actually Justin's hollow concrete creations. My pal Camille took a class from Justin and created a hollow boulder of her own. Cordyline 'Electric Flash' is striking!
As if a beautiful open garden and plant sale weren't incentive enough to attend, lunch is served, a guest speaker gives a plant talk and there are activities for children.
There were lots of great plants at the sale but I didn't take any pictures. Seems my hands were busy doing something else.
Past speakers have included Dan Hinkley, Kelly Dodson, and Graham Kerr. This year, another world-renowned plantsman, Sean Hogan, brought plants to sell and then gave a talk about some of his favorites. Conveniently, the plant sale was open after the talk.
Oh my, that's Clematis florida var. sieboldiana in the middle climbing the trunks of Schefflera taiwaniana.
Many thanks to the Galicic family for another opportunity to visit their stunning garden and for this lovely annual tradition!
"In 1993, Karen and Warner bought a 100 year old Victorian Catholic church and rectory in the Snohomish Historic District. They named it Angel Arms Works" began the description of this garden in the Northwest Perennial Alliance book of open gardens. Sounded right up my alley and indeed it was!
"The buildings were renovated for an art studio and residence, and Karen started working on the garden desing, considering this an extension of her work as an artist." (Talk about a parking strip! Can you imagine the spectacle when all of those iris were in bloom?)
The mingled feelings of peace and excitement that came over me on entering this space, the vibe of the place, is difficult to describe.
"Karen created 'flowers' mode of industrial parts to serve as plant support stakes throught. Look also for Warner's abstract angels."
"Because the garden is relatively small, paths were created to weave through curving beds. A brick patio was built on a central entry axis, covered with an arbor Warner built."
This poem, written by Karen as the U.S. was dropping bombs on Afghanistan, adorns the four beams of the arbor.
It was about at this point that I met Karen herself and started asking questions about various objects. I'll never forget her question, "Do you like stuff?" With racing heart and dancing eyes, I wiped the drool from my mouth and calmly responded that, yes, I enjoy admiring things.
We were invited inside the house. Karen is an artist, yoga instructor, and the mayor of Snohomish a combination as successfully eclectic as her home's interior. I'm usually not a fan of the marriage of modern industrial objects and Victorian-era homes but this was done in such a seamless way as to seem quite natural. Modern and antique furnishings cavorted as if made for each other, all holding collections of stunning objects centered on the idea of harmony, glorious artwork dripping from the walls. I wasn't bold enough to ask to take pictures of the interior but you can see a few accompanying this article in Western Art and Architecture. One of my favorite things about the former church rectory was a rather large antique armoire with three mirrored doors in the dining room. The two side doors opened to reveal storage for tableware. The center door, when opened, revealed a portal to Blake's studio, probably the former sacristy of the church.
A quote from that article: “We are very aware that this was a house of worship. Years of prayers and forgiveness put us in touch with a sense of spirit,” Guzak says. “I would call that spirit a universal life force. And, isn’t that what artists hope to capture and reveal in their work? A life force that touches our souls.”
As Karen mentioned, the garden is not huge but it holds many spaces to relax, reflect, and enjoy the wonder of the space.
My only regret is that I don't live closer to Snohomish so that I could pass by this garden on a regular basis.
A busy week and weekend found me rushing around late Sunday afternoon to find something to quickly throw into a container. Fuchsias are still blooming their heads off in my garden so a few got trimmed away from a path and quickly tossed into a crystalline glazed vase. There aren't a lot of vase-worthy late summer blooms in my garden at the moment but I couldn't bring myself to do an evergreen foliage arrangement quite yet.
Affiliated with the Cactus and Succulent Society of America, the CC&SS meets throughout the year and is a really great group of plant enthusiasts. Each September on the weekend after labor day, the society has a plant sale at Sky Nursery in Northshore, WA. I attended the sale for the first time last year and decided not to miss it again! Here's a taste of this year's offerings.
Okay, this was technically stuff from Sky Nursery, not from the Odd Plant Sale itself but it was perfectly placed outside the entrance to the sale area.
One of the unique things about the sale is that the plants come from private collections so there's a wide variety from specimens that are quite large to small starts.
Somehow this wound up in my cart. You have to watch out for jumping plants all the time!
Echeveria setosa deminuta. Is that a great blue or what? Unfortunately this was in someone else's box.
Visiting McAuliffe's Valley Nursery in Snohomish for the first time this summer, I noticed an interesting raised platform large enough for a speaker or performing group. What was on stage at the moment? White/cream has never been my favorite color of pot but these varied shapes against the emerald green backdrop with elegant red side curtains were stunning.
This week is a bit crazy for me with activities at work every evening. I get used to coming and going in the dark during the winter when the garden doesn't need attention but at this time of year, it's a bit more challenging. Tired and maybe a bit grumpy, I got home last night just in time to water some droopy plants and take a few pictures for bloom day before it got totally dark. The grumpiness was left from the morning when I found and cleaned up some debris and trash thrown in my parking strips and various items on my back steps. Sometimes, when that happens thoughts of getting rid of all the plants out there and replacing them with gravel pop into my head. It passes.
This well timed gift made me contemplate how fortunate I am in so many ways. The smoke-free sky put on a pink sunset show which was enjoyed from a dry and safe home.
Grumpiness replaced by gratitude. Thanks universe for so many special gardening friends and for a multitude of daily blessings!
It's hard to believe that it's the last bloom day of summer. Like it or not, the autumnal equinox is only a week away. Not a lot of new blooms in my garden this month, mostly late-staying guests at the summer party, lingering until Jack Frost breaks up the fun.
Forgot to take pictures of the toad lily blooms. Interesting but not impressive blooms on fabulous foliage.
For the first time ever, I've had a problem with powdery mildew on my tuberous begonias. Many look rather dreadful but there are a few stalwarts that continue to crank out flowers.
Salvia 'Amistad.' S. 'Hot Lips' has been blooming all summer out in the parking strip but hasn't made a single GBBD post.
Pelargonum in a loud and tasteless color. Begonia seedlings appeared in this pot and I left them to see what they were. Turns out they're Begonia boliviensis in bright orange. The combination would certainly cause nightmares for proper garden colorists.
Funny, I just looked at a few previous September GBBD blog posts and the flowers are almost identical to those in this post. Maybe I need to try growing something different.
The addictive meme, In a Vase on Monday, a weekly opportunity to gather contents for containers from our gardens or nearby to enjoy inside during the week, is hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.
Happy birthday to Heronswood, which is once again blossoming under the care of the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe and the garden's original creator, Dan Hinkley.
Even though there was a green NPA Open sign on the gate, I felt almost as if I were trespassing into someone's tightly-held secret garden. The gate creaked open and many wonders unfurled one after another.
It never ceases to amaze me that a simple hedge can separate a busy street from a garden of solace and relaxation; that a garden can surround us with beauty, quiet, peace, and fun in the midst of the city's bustle.
"There is a formal area around the Little and Lewis fountain that features hybrid lilies. The fountain contains a collection of antique Japanese glass balls." Mark joked that if he found one of anything that he liked, he soon created a collection. I'd met another kindred spirit in Snohomish.
"The garden has been featured in many publications, including Thomas Hobbs' book, The Jewel Box Garden."
A Wardian case nestled among foliage. There are treasures to be found at every turn in this garden of someone who clearly enjoys collecting plants as much as objects.
Mr. Henry pulled out all the stops in his exuberant garden. Ornamental pipes from an organ removed from a church where Mark had sung in the choir are repurposed here as a support for a climbing hydrangea.
Had to circle around to the side garden once again to get a shot of this bust that looks as if it fell from the broken column. Had the Visigoths sacked Snohomish as well?
For plant addicts, finding a new nursery is always a treat. One of the Snohomish open garden hosts suggested that, while in the area, I should visit McAuliffe's Valley Nursery. It turned out to be a great recommendation! "A rural 40-acre garden center offering home-grown trees, perennials, and edibles with rare varieties."
A parking lot this interesting and tidy let me know right from the start that this was going to be a great experience.
In addition to the retail spaces, there is an attractive demonstration garden which was a joy to walk through on a sunny and warm July day.
While this was my first visit to Mcauliffe's, it certainly won't be my last, especially since it's only a ten minute drive from Flower World!
While the calendar says that today is the autumnal equinox and the cold, windy, and wet weather caused me to turn the furnace on for the first time last night, I'm still holding on to those warm and wonderful days of summer and pretending that they'll return any day now. To help with this seasonal denial, today let's relive another beautiful July day in Seattle as we tour the garden of Myrna Torrie.
"Stroll around to see an array of trees, shrubs, roses, more clematis, climbing hydrangea, perennials, containers, garden art, and a small fountain to greet you."
"Check out some of my favorites such as Double Otto hardy fuchsia, Daphne marianni, Abutillon 'Windcliff Coral', Selaginellas and much more."
"Descend the gravel steps lined with Daphne 'Maijima,' Phlox 'Lilac Flame,' Dichroa febrifuga, red Eccremocarpus vine and small treasures like Leptinella."
"Continue down around to admire my 'Endless Summer,''Blushing Bride,' and 'Lady in Red' hydrangeas."
In a Vase on Monday is hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden. Click here to join in the fun!
It's a strange time in my garden. Not a lot of vase-worthy blooms. The garden has slowed down and there are, as always, plants that should go into the ground. Fall is in the air but it's not quite time for the plant migration although I'm beginning to squash things together in the greenhouse to make space and contemplate which plants might be houseplants for the winter. The sun has returned but I'm not feeling particularly motivated to do a whole lot in the garden right now. Today's containers salute to cacti and succulents that don't mind being ignored for weeks at a time.
Recently, pal Alison and I attended the Heronswood Fall plant sale and my heart skipped a beat when I saw this Trevisia affinis palmata on the Windcliff Plants table. Earlier this summer, exceptional gardener and plant freak, Mary Palmer, posted a picture of hers and created instant plant lust. Dan Hinkley says that his specimen has been hardy outside during even the coldest winters in his zone 8b garden. This beautiful thing comes from the mountains of NE Vietnam. My Trevesia palmata 'Micholitzii' and Trevesia palmata are hardy only to 25-30 degrees and their even more deeply-lobed and cut leaves (Snowflake aralia is a common name) have made it worth lugging them in and out of the house each year.
Gentiana 'Alex Duguid' is an older variety of autumn-flowering Gentian. They had me at autumn-flowering. From the Far Reaches table at the Heronswood sale.
There were some Valley Nursery reward dollars in my account that needed to be spent so this beauty came home with me. (Like I need another bromeliad...)
Many years ago, I planted Tropaeolum speciosum at the feet of Chamaecyparis lawsoniana 'Van Pelt's Blue' thinking that the brilliant vermilion blooms would look good clambering up the oh-so-blue foliage. That Tropaeolum never did much but this year, one nearby jumped over and decided to climb toward the sun on the blue Chamaecyparis (A.K.A. Port Orford Cedar) which made me exceedingly happy.
Chamaecyparis lawsoniana 'Van Pelt's Blue' appeared briefly at a couple of nurseries about eight years ago and I got three tiny saplings. They then seemed to vanish from the trade, perhaps because of the fungal problem that beset the Port Orford Cedars. However, recently Youngblood has been delivering them to several area nurseries. This is such a stunning blue color which gets even better in the winter. If you see one, snap it up as one never knows how long this window of availability will be open. By the way, my three little saplings are now about ten feet tall and don't seem to mind a bit of pruning.