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, January 30, 2015

My Favorite Plant(s) ...This Week

My favorite plants...this week are three dwarf conifers that came from Lael's Moon Garden, one of the few plant vendors at the Tacoma Home and Garden Show.   While I think that miniature gardens are sweet, I simply can't pull it off in my garden as diminutive plants tend to get lost in my "exuberant" (randomly planted plants jockeying for positions in the sun) plantings.  However, the stairs from our back porch to the garden are fairly narrow but I still like to have some sort of potted plants on either side.  This summer, potted miniature hostas and coleus did the trick but now they are a little, um, dormant or dead.  Enter the dwarf conifers!

First up is Chamaecyparis pisifera 'White Pygmy' which grows one to three inches a year, is hardy to -20 F, and likes sun to partial shade.  Tiny white-tipped, bun-shaped plant.

It maintains it's shape without pruning and will have a more open growth habit in less sunny locations.

Our next contestant is Chamaecyparis obtusa 'Butterball' growing one foot tall by one foot wide in ten years, hardy to - 20 F. I have to include this description from Klehm's Song Sparrow Farm and Nursery: "Bright, lemony yellow tips give this dwarf, globose Hinoki Cypress a fresh, cheery look. The vivid coloring contrasts beautifully with naturally darker inner foliage. Chamaecyparis obtusa 'Butter Ball' is distinguished by its consistently rounded habit and very dense, slow growth. Use in containers, rock gardens, and evergreen collections."  I'll be looking for opportunities to use the word globose!  Interesting fact:  the American pronunciation is glahb ose (having the shape of a glob?) while the English pronunciation, which is how I thought it was supposed to be pronounced, is globe ose. (having the shape of a globe.)

The third is Athrotaxis cupressoides or Tasmanian Cedar.  I liked the almost succulent look of this and when the nice lady from Lael's said that it was her favorite of the plants that they'd brought, that clinched the deal.

According to the tag, "A small slow-growing upright conifer with rich green foliage similar in appearance to the giant redwood, sequoiadendron giganteum.  Dull sun, well drained soil 5' x 2' in 10 years.  Hardy to 0 degres F."  So far, so good, but the interweb has pictures of this getting huge over a great number of years.  Mine will most likely be in a pot until one of us dies so I don't have to worry about placement in the garden. 

I'm joining with Loree at Danger Garden in posting a favorite plant this week.  Click on over there to see what plant is her favorite this week!  Hope you have a great weekend.  Molbak's is having a 40% off sale on Hellbores but I haven't visited Vashon Island for a long time.  Decisions, decisions.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Flinging in Portland - The Pre-Fling Party at Pomarius Nursery

I loved the fact that the Portland Garden Bloggers' fling was only a few hours drive away for me. We'd just arrived home from a trip to Alaska, where we visited many gardens, and had a day to get ready to leave for the fling.  At the last minute, I had the opportunity to see the Elizabeth C. Miller Garden on that day and couldn't miss that.  How nice to simply jump in the car and drive to Portland! While I had the best intentions of leaving early and checking out the area around the hotel, I waited until the last minute and arrived at the hotel just in time to leave my bag at the front desk and hop on the bus to the party.

Although I'd seen posts about Pomarius, this was my first time to see this place in person.  What a combination of  choice plants, unusual spaces, and architectural objects awaited us as we arrived. Seeing fellow garden bloggers is always exciting but Pomarius was a particularly festive venue for an evening of re connecting with people, some of whom only see each other face to face at this annual event.

Pam Penick, the Texan who dreamed up the idea of the fling years ago and has been in attendance at each one, chats with Lisa who traveled from Spain to attend.

Many of our Portland hosts (John Greenlee was an honorary Portlander for a couple of days.) wore floral accessories.  Not one's typical corsage!

Did these all come from Laura's garden?

Ann's tiara being adored by someone whose mother never told her that it's rude to point. 

An orange spray painted Allium schubertii seed head is quite a statement all by itself!

Loree chose to simply wear an agave and be the flower herself. 

So many plants/ so many plant people...

Gaz, Gerhard, and Mark.  I've forgotten what was so funny.   
 Pomarius has display areas of exuberant tropicalismo plants, succulents and other xeric plants and somewhat subdued formal offerings. There's something for everyone here!

Tammy and Jason talking about the size of something.  "Really, the aphids were this big!" Tammy seems concerned.

 "Tango" citrus

Orange-clothed tables with mason jars of delphinums, gerbera daisies, goldenrod, and hypericum fruit.

Anna finds a new use for a trachycarpus fortunei trunk.  

 I was particularly tickled by the placement of this bear!  It looks like he's going to grab the truck on the bridge.

It's a good thing he's caged!

 There are a couple of things I wish I'd picked up like some of these sweet concrete flower pots.

And at least one of these!

It was a special evening in a grand venue!  

We all went home looking forward to what was to come in the next three days and Portland most certainly did not disappoint!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Internet and Copyright...Hmm.

One of my favorite stained glass panels is this one made by my glass guru years ago.  I published an image of it on my blog a year or so ago.

"Winter" by Florence Welborn
A few months ago, while perusing Pinterest, I saw this panel, clicked on the link and found that it was for sale on Etsy.  I felt horrible, thinking that my posting of the original, later pinned, was the reason for the copy.
"Abstract Pines Full Moon"
Abstract Pines Full Moon Etched Snowflakes  Mouth-blwn Glass
I contacted the artist and shared the image of the original.  The person said that the second  window was made back in the 90's. Apologized and removed the panel from her online shop.  Hmmm.  In talking with Florence, she said that an image of the original was published in a stained glass magazine in the late 80's in a story about an exhibition at the gallery where I now teach. 

I could go into all sorts of reasons why the original in this case is superior to the copy from glass choices, execution, down to the name of the piece.  These are obviously not pines!
Abstract Pines Full Moon Etched Snowflakes  Mouth-blwn Glass

So, even before the internet, there was plagiarism, but like many things, the internet makes the practice easier and faster.  I totally understand when  artists and craftspeople  don't want their work photographed or at least not posted on the internet for fear that others will copy their ideas and respect their preference.

Just last night, I got an email from a blogging friend with a link to a blog called "Gardening Tips" by Izabel Goulart in which every single word and photograph of every post was directly copied from my blog. You can view it here.   While Izabel is no longer posting on the Garden Tips Blog, she has continued to steal, verbatim, my posts on her google+ account   Nowhere in any post is credit given.

I don't claim to be an expert gardener, an accomplished writer, or more than an adequate photographer but post on my blog for the joy of it. Being part of the community of garden bloggers and meeting people who enjoy reading about each others' gardening adventures is it's own reward. So, what's the damage when someone steals our work?  Our voice has been stolen.  This has happened to other bloggers and it is flattering that someone would think my work is worth stealing but it still, as my blogging friend said, burns!  Ms. Goulart did get a message from me regarding this issue.

I'm guessing that Izabel won't be re posting this one!

Has your blog been plagiarised?  Did you take any action?

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The Tacoma Home and Garden Show: Part the Second

The good news about the plant sale part of the show was that there was a lot of space to walk around the tables.  The bad news is that the reason there was so much space is that there were fewer plant vendors this year.  This event used to have a whole separate huge room for the plant vendors; now they're just in a corner of the one space.  While the number of plant vendors was disappointing, the ones that did come brought some lovely things.  This is a very busy time in the horticulture industry and it's difficult to be loading up trucks of plants to take to events if  you're already busy in  greenhouses, receiving plants, planning for the year, etc. so I'm grateful for the vendors that did come and hope that the organizers of this event will do something to entice more participants to next year's event!

This one was new to me.  How fun to discover a new place to visit!

Agave "Blue Glow" seems to be popping up everywhere round these parts.  Has anybody tried growing it outside in the PNW?  Tony Avent places it as being hardy to zone 8b but I've always brought it inside for the winter.

Shy and sweet Hellebore.

These were cool but where would I put them?

Another great use for pruned branches of contorted filbert. 

Baby Dicksonia antarctica in four inch pots.  How long do you suppose it would take these to grow big enough to walk beneath?

Pinus contorta var. latifolia 'Chief Joseph' doing it's golden winter dance. 

I was too busy buying plants here to take pictures.  Bless their hearts for coming all the way from Stayton!  I just potted up the Hymenocallis bulbs and daylilies that I got here. There were also some tempting Oriental and Asiatic lilies but I must wait to see where the bulbs I planted last fall come up. 

Alison also found some treasures here!

The good folks from Lael's Moon Garden brought some great plants including three unusual  teeny dwarf conifers that came home with me.  I've bought great things from Lael's at various sales and always vow to go see the nursery.  Hooray, another great destination to visit this spring/summer! 

B&D lilies always has a great selection.  Their sign reading "Sun to Shade Lily Bulbs" intrigued me. They'll also be at the NWFGS and I'll definitely want to learn more about lilies for shade!

In contrast to the smaller number of plant vendors at this year's show, it seems like the Vintage Market perhaps had even more participants.  The Urban Gardener sharing a space with Millesime Designs.  Didn't get a picture but Millesime Designs had some gold-painted Monkey Puzzle tree branches in vases.  Brilliant! (And a fun idea to steal.)  If gold's not your thing, how about white, chartreuse, or black paint?

Ah, nostalgia is a wonderful thing!  

There was a pay phone with a rotary dial in one of the spaces.  It's interesting to think that there is a generation of people who would have no idea what that object was.

 Alison and I both thought this face was cool. 

Another punch cup chandelier.  I keep meaning to make one of these myself but never get around to it.  I sort of wish I'd just bought this one.

This vendor had some very nice American pottery including an unusual  McCoy vase that I thought was the bees knees and was reasonably priced but I have too much stuff already! (That doesn't usually stop me.)

Marianne Binetti yucking it up with Ciscoe Morris  as they broadcast his radio show.  Looks like they had as much fun as Alison and I!