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.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Rare Plant Research Annual Open House

Rare Plant Research is a wholesale grower of unusual plants that opens it's doors to the public one weekend a year.  I'd purchased their plants from local nurseries for years before visiting myself and now try to make it to the open every spring.   To see many previous posts from RPR, look here.  You can also search my blog by typing Rare Plant Research (or any other term you might be interested in) in the white box with the magnifying glass in the upper left hand corner of the screen.   Once again this year, I met my pal Loree (yes, THE Loree Bohl of Sunset Magazine Fame.) in her equally famous garden from which we set out to Rare Plant Research together.   Loree warned me that the garden was a mess so I didn't ask about taking pictures but his lady doesn't know from mess - her garden looked fabulous as always.  Here's a bit of what we saw.

Lots of tiny agaves.

Some more stressed than others. 

Only in the Pacific Northwest...Our native sword fern finding its way into potted agaves. 

Trachycarpus wagnerianus for a ridiculously low price had me wondering where I could squeeze in another 

This NFS variegated pineapple made me glad that I purchased one here several years ago. 

Speaking of bromeliads...

The hot and bright conditions in these greenhouses really bring out the vibrant colors of these beauties. 

I would want more bromeliads if I didn't already have so many from a number of years of attending this sale.

Citrus trees are lots of fun to see but My garden is out of space. 

 Cussonia looking quite happy.  I wonder if they'll have these for sale in the future?

Fucrea gigantia is such a stunning thing.  Mine is struggling along in the greenhouse.  Wouldn't it be divine to live in a climate where these could happily grow in the ground?

Musa zebrina 

Look at the size of those velvety leaves .  That's the head of a shopper included for scale. 

Agave geminiflora.

Colorful succulents. 

Aloe dorotheae

Carnivorous and colorful Sarracenias aka  Pitcher Plants.

NoID NFS coolness. 

 Well, isn't that different?   

Now for some of what my pal, Alison, calls  fat bottomed girls (Caudiciform plants) 

Calabanus hookeri looked so fabulous  at RPR.  

It jumped into Loree's new plantmobile along with a few other things.  To be fair, some of these are Loree's.  (well, one box)  Someone has no control.
We opted not to visit the house, gardens, and vineyard this year.  It's beautiful but another nursery and lunch were calling.

Monday, May 21, 2018

In a Vase on Monday

Today's vase started with Loree's idea about using Buddleja globosa in a vase.  I couldn't find the vase I'd thought of for today but this one has been sitting around, waiting to be used for months.

In addition to the buddleja, I found a few other things out int he parking strip to throw together:  Ceanothus 'Dark Star,'  NoID rhododendron,  Euphorbia amygdaloides var. robbiae, and a bit of Cupressus arizonica 'Blue Ice' foliage.

May is such a wonderful month in the garden when simply trimming wayward plants can yield a bouquet.

The Cascade Cactus and Succulents Society visited the garden today and in honor of their visit, joining the arrangement are this made by Jeff Pinto  silly-looking cactus whose spines are tied up in a bow

and a less silly-looking cactus vase. 

There was more
Sincere thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting IaVoM.  To see more of what participating bloggers are plopping into vases today, visit Cathy's blog!

Friday, May 18, 2018

Retail Therapy at Wells-Medina Nursery

On the twenty-eighth of April, my pal Alison (Bonney Lassie) and I led a workshop about garden blogging at the Bellevue Botanical Garden under the auspices of the Northwest Perennial Alliance.  I shared everything I know about blogging and when that three minutes were over, Alison did the rest.  It was great fun chatting with other gardeners and hopefully some of the participants will start garden blogs of their own.  Since we were already on the east side, it just made sense to stop by Wells Medina for some retail therapy.

Hey look, new wallpaper!

It was interesting to note that just a couple of weeks ago, these trees were still leafless.  Now they'd be fully leafed out.  May is a magical month in the garden.

This combination looked great all winter and is still quite lovely.

Nice large specimens of Cordyline 'Electric Pink' 

Bright spring color decorates the tiered bed 

The nursery was packed to the gills with all sorts of plants.  Arisaema ovale 'Variegata' was a temptation.

I love peonies and wish I had space for more.  Oh well in the next garden will have acreage.

Fremontodendron californicum

That's Salvia leucantha 'White Mischief' between the Mandevillas. Things are warming up.

Anigozanthos from down under. 

In addition to the vast array of evergreens, trees, rhododendrons, roses, perennials, etc. there were some surprises of the succulent variety.

Aloe mitriformis

Aloe nobile 'Gold Tooth'

Agave bovicornuta is not often seen in nurseries here.  It was so tempting to bring one of these home but my poor mistreated specimen seems to be recovering

One could take a bit of california home. 

 How exciting, the time has come and everything can safely go outside!  I took things out a bit early this year but they don't seem to mind too awfully much. 
Rare Plant Research in Oregon City is having their annual Garden Sale this weekend.  There are always great plants and cool pots made by Burl, the owner.  Whatever you do, hope your weekend is stellar!