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.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Visiting South Seattle College Arboretum

"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.

Paths weave through informal shaded areas and large open lawns edged with roses.

Here we find  a rose garden. 

Dwarf conifers are used informally throughout. 

This plaque brought a smile.  Cass was an amazing woman.

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.

The garden is only a few years old and is an ongoing project. 

Fencing made of bamboo surrounds brush piles. 

There's even a place where you can pose with terra cotta warriors. 

A fish out of water. 

When all of these peonies are in bloom this must be spectacular.  (There's a peony and bamboo festival in May.)

Heading back into the woods. 

Time to head back to the plant mobile.  

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Wednesday Vignette and A Nice Surprise

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.
Dead eucalyptus fingers strumming the strings of a sky guitar.  Sun and blue sky are in the forecast for the next month and a half.

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.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Saturday Afternoon at Jungle Fever Exotics Nursery

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.

Spiky temptation.

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.

You never know who might be watching you here. 

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.

Fatsia japonica 'Spider's Web' is a bright spot in a shady corner. 

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.

Jerry's image on an independent film festival poster can be seen to the right of Buddha. 
What a fun afternoon!