Tuesday, March 23, 2010

It’s the leaves; it’s all about the leaves...

Last weekend I attended the Portland Chinese Garden Plant Sale, or as it is now called the Lan Su Chinese Garden. I’d never been to one of their sales and I wasn’t sure what to expect. According to the press release there would be “Chinese plants including orchids, rhododendrons, camellias, edgeworthia, daphne, and bamboo” all fine plants but none on my must have list…although these large leaved Rhododendrons (we're talking at least 14" long) certainly captured my imagination. Very tempting, but I think I’ve sworn off the marginally hardy, or at least marginally hardy over $20. I did succeed in finding the only spiky plant in the whole place, a Yucca nana, a new type of yucca for the danger garden!
I picked it up and carried it with me for awhile. But then I saw this…and thoughts of purchasing the yucca disappeared, just look at those leaves! Must have!
Only when I got home and was sharing my finds with my husband did I realize the interesting leaf patterns in the combination of plants I had chosen. The Cyperus (Umbrella Palm, on the lower left) leaves echo the veins at the center of the large Rodgersia tabularis leaf.
The Syneilesis (Shredded Umbrella Plant) takes that one step further…
It seems to repeat the pattern of the veins all the way out to the edge.
It’s curious that the two plants with the word ‘umbrella’ in their common name wouldn’t do a thing to protect you in a downpour. Personally I'd stand under the Rodgersia, well; if I were 5” tall.


  1. Lovely plants, especially the yucca. I love your header by the way.

  2. I'm green with envy! The Syneilesis is a Teza favorite. I think I need to have it too. Looks like you hit the jackpot at the sale, Loree. Good eye.

    Question: Do you have Prickly Pear cactus yet? Fry Road Nursery has little ones for a song. Just thought I'd let you know....

  3. Nice selection of plants!

  4. Interesting patterns, I wouldn't have caught those without you pointing them out, but now it seems so clear. Any regrets on passing up on that yucca?

  5. You know, I once saw someone modify their umbrella to accommodate nasteriums. it was fully functional, and flowering too. Matti

  6. Rainforest, thanks! Are you trying to make me regret not getting the yucca? :)

    Grace, I planted the Syneilesis today, I was wishing I had got a third! What was I thinking? Thank you for the prickly pear tip! I just did finally get one about a month ago. It's in the ground already!

    How it Grows, thanks!

    Megan, oddly no regrets. I had decided this was to be the "year of the yucca" on account of their hardiness combined with spikiness...but one has to make allowances for deviating when one encounters super cool plant finds!

    Matti, seriously! That is crazy talk!

  7. Love the Rodgersia close look - good eye. I bet you'll end up with that yucca one of these days. That's one plant sale I really wish I could have gone to. Do you know anything about the garden's name change, why and what it means?


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