Although this could very well be a picture of me finding a new treasure at a favorite nursery, it's actually an illustration by David Catrow for a children's book called Plantzilla.

Friday, April 21, 2017

A Spring Saunter Through The Rhododendron Species Garden

When attending the sale sponsored by the Rhododendron Species Garden Foundation, who could resist the temptation to take a walk through their spectacular botanical  garden?  As an added bonus, I asked a question and was directed to a fellow who turned out to be the famous plant explorer and director of the garden.  What a thrill to meet this brilliant and kind man about whom I'd read.  I won't bore you with many words because there are so many pictures in this post.

R. sinogrande for sale.  Dig the big bold foliage!
 Pleione bulbocodioides

Magnolia sargentiana var. robusta has huge blooms!

The conservatory.

Back outside.

The meadow.

Exciting things to come!

The non-gardener remarked at the darkness of this Camellia japonica.  They really were stunning!

A brief moment of sun between showers.

Soon to be a field of Cardiocrinum giganteum and blue poppies.

Cardiocrinum giganteum var. yunnanense

Vibrant textures of spring.

On to the stumpery.

Have a good weekend all.  Hope we all get some nice gardening weather!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

The Rhododendron Species Foundation Spring Sale

Pinch Me, I Must Be Dreaming!  How lucky for those of us in the Pacific Northwest to have two, count 'em two, fabulous specialty plant sales happening on the same weekend.  Fortunately, the RSF sale took place on Friday and Saturday while Hortlandia took place on Saturday and Sunday.    First the RSG sale.

This sale seemed even more grand than it was last year. It was a treat to see so many familiar vendors who I worried might forego this sale this year because of the conflict.  Some, like Keeping it Green Nursery found a way to be at both sales.  Plant people are magic.

Having bid farewell to our Chocolate girl in the wee hours of this Good Friday morning, it was good to get out of the house and try to  be a little distracted by late afternoon when the sale opened.

Being surrounded by so much life was helpful and walking the grounds of the garden (post tomorrow) was healing.

So many delicious plants.

Fuchsias with interesting foliage

and adorable blooms like this F. reflexa

Acers a-go-go

Podophyllum 'Spotty Dotty' has come back during the last couple of years.  For a time this was hard to find.

I forgot which pyrossia this is.

 The foliage of Viola koreana, the cyclamen-leaved violet, caught my eye.  The clump of violets in my front lawn isn't increasing quickly enough to take over all of that grass so I'm collecting violets to plant around in the lawn to help out.

Teddy, the mascot of Keeping it Green seemed comfortable on a chair in his coat.  He's a very friendly and sweet boy who I've met and patted before.

From soft and cuddly to sharp and dangerous, there's always an agave.  Nice to see more of these showing up!

Ian of The Desert Northwest brought a very nice selection of agaves but I have most of these, having shopped with this great grower before.

Grevillea fivularis, which has sweet pink flowers came home with me. 

So tempted by these Banksias.

Descampsia flexuosa 'Aurea' looked quite fetching especially when the sun broke through the clouds briefly and lit it artfully.

A new plant to me that almost made it into the plant mobile just for the story!

Here's the haul:  Prostanthera rotundifolia, delighted to finally find an Artemesia versicolor 'Seafoam', Eucryphia glutinosa, Grevillea rivularis, Descampsia flexuosa 'Aurea', a couple of Saxifraga stolonifera to replenish a patch that I lost, Campanula 'Samantha' , Hosta 'Crumb Cake' and a new Grevillea 'Ivanhoe.' My Ivanhoe perished this winter in the wet and cold sitting out in a four inch pot.  I'll take better care of this one!
Tomorrow we'll stroll the garden together!