Tuesday, July 27, 2010

In the gardens of friends, day 2 (2010 version)

The next day I spent shopping in downtown Seattle with my friend Erin (yes its true…I do sometimes do shop for things other than plants!). When lunchtime came around she suggested The Pink Door, which meant lunch outside on their garden deck overlooking Elliot Bay, perfect. I am going to try your patience with a quick trip down memory lane. I’ll keep it short; I know this is a garden blog after all. The Pink Door is a small Italian restaurant in the Pike Place Market. This is where I brought my surprised parents and grandparents (where is she taking us? There isn’t even a sign! Is this safe!?) for a drink one hot summer afternoon in my 20’s when they were in town visiting me. This is where I had a big going away dinner with all my friends the night before I moved away from Seattle and back to Spokane. This is where I brought my husband for lunch one trip through Seattle. We ended up spending an hour on a quiet weekday afternoon drinking with the bartender who had lived on the San Juan Islands for a few years, and we had just returned from vacationing there.

I love this place. Here is their entrance off Post Alley…if you ever find yourself wandering around the public market in Seattle and you see this pink door, go in.
Anyway…after a day of shopping we retired to Erin’s patio and more wine (I know…it’s a theme with me). As I mentioned in a previous post Erin’s gardening endeavors are slightly hampered by two adorable but rambunctious dogs. This is Lucy.
The petals so artfully strewn across the grass are from a rose bush above. Like Steve and his daisies (from yesterday’s post) Erin is no fan of roses, but she has let this one live on. Its stature (growing high above the Rhododendrons) and exuberant ways have earned its keep.
Because of the dogs she does a lot of container gardening. In fact I blame Erin for my current obsession with turquoise containers. When she was in Portland we happened on a sale and she scooped these up. I haven’t been able to get them out of my mind.
She is also among the few in the Pacific Northwest that are enjoying a Hesperaloe parviflora bloom this summer (I’m very jealous in case you can’t tell).
Her Tetrapanax rebounded nicely from a cold winter.
One of my favorite features of her patio is the plant almost completely covering the chain link fence and enclosing the patio, creating a sense of privacy (in the city fences really do make the garden don’t they?). I realize now I have always thought of it as a Cotoneaster but I think I am wrong.
And even though she has plans to replace the brick patio with sleek concrete slabs I personally enjoyed getting to spend another evening relaxing and catching up with my friend on the bricks, they have such character! (the bricks…and the friend)


  1. What IS the plant on her fence? It sure looks like cotoneaster to me.
    I want to steal all her containers...

  2. I think we all enjoy your digressions, so feel free...
    If not cotoneaster, what?? & how long do you suppose it took to create such marvelous enclosure?

  3. What a great, refined garden Erin has. I would have said that fence plant was some kind of cotoneaster, too. Why don't you think so?

    I LOVE the Pink Door! It's been the site of several fabulous meals for me, too. And the bay view is just perfect on a warm summer evening.

  4. Greensparrow (& ricki and MulchMaid), ok well then...I guess I did know what I was talking about! Thank you for the second third and fourth opinions. For some reason as I was uploading these pictures I just had doubt. As for the theft issue...me too...

    ricki, I've been enjoying this patio for about 12 years now and to the best of my memory (never a could thing to base anything on) it's always been this private and enclosed, I do know for sure that Erin didn't plant the 'enclosure' plants. A former homeowner must have done the dirty work!

    MulchMaid, yay! I am so glad to hear you are a Pink Door fan too! As for the why....I don't know. Are you ever in those places where you find you are full of self doubt?

  5. I have a great memory of the Pink door. It was the first place I ever ate in Seattle ages ago when I was in high school-glad to know it's still around!

  6. So there's more to Pike's Place than touristy things? I'll have to remember on my next trip through. Your friend's containers are severely cool, and she's put them to good use with some neat plants. I planted a hesperaloe about 10 years ago and thought it was a goner, but was weeding under a big agave next to where it was, and there was the plant, small and spindly, but still alive. Talk about tough, still living after being run over by a monster agave.

  7. I can see why you obsessed about those turquoise containers. I'm sure you've realized by now that I share your predicament :) Love the pots! Love Lucy, despite her petal fluttering ways! She looks like a nice dog!

    I haven't been to Pike Place in years. Next time I'm out that way I'll make sure to stop by the pink door!

  8. Very nice containers - they do remind me of your style. I love ornate urns and all the classical stuff, which I'm sure isn't your favorite! But escheveria, phormium and other spiky plants look better in the modern style containers, I think.

  9. What a lovely patio your friend has. I do like the bricks also. And those turquoise pots are wonderful. Love the aeoniums planted in them also.

    Alas I have never seen the pink door but it sounds like a magical place.

  10. AnonymousJuly 28, 2010

    Hi Loree, The plant is Lonicera nitida or box honeysuckle. I have used it for all my lower hedges to great effect, if I do say so myself. It's a fast grower, completely evergreen and drought tolerant. I love how Erin is using it. Her containers are great. I'm wishing now I would have left my tetrapanax in a container but I recently bought a Gunnera [finally--Fry Road, large plug, cheap] for a container. Why are you jealous of the Hesperaloe? Is yours not blooming?

    The Pink Door, how perfect. Seriously perfect!


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