Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Fall 2010 HPSO Sale wrap-up

Well those of you who bet I’d come home with a few plants were correct. After all there were so many special plants to choose from! (incase you can’t read the print on the orange sign above it says “Special Plants for special people").

I wasn’t being disingenuous last week when I said I might not buy anything at the Fall HPSO Sale. I’m in a mood. Where others see fall and all its beauty, I sometimes forget that and only see that which comes next (WINTER). I didn't feel like subjecting new plant friends to the evil grasp of the Winter Warlock.
But the joy of shopping on a warm fall day took over and I bought a few things, five things actually: a test subject, a duplicate, an addition to a collection, and a pair of sexy new acquaintances. But before I introduce you let’s take a very quick spin around the sale.

The first interesting thing that caught my eye was this Shishi botan, Farfugium.
It looked like lettuce.
There were a few chuckles when we saw this Ratibida or Mexican Hat.
What beautiful color! My Mahonia infatuation continues. They have so many different looks.
And speaking of infatuation…my ability to resist the big leaved Rhododendrons is slipping away. Every time I see one I get closer to buying. The HPSO spring sale might be the final straw. For now I resisted.
And going to the other end of the spectrum this Rhododendron stenopetalum linearifolium is equally appealing.
Surprisingly a couple of conifers tempted me. I’ve always loved the coloration on this one (sorry to busy talking to remember to get the name).
And this Himalayan Pine! Not only is it a beauty with its subtle yellow/green variegation but it is so so soft!
There were a few agaves in attendance. Not nearly as many as at the spring sale.
I meant to go back and pick up one of these. It’s obviously not a plant you want to carry around with you. I completely forgot about it until I saw these pictures!
Looks like I might be making a trip out to Hana Farms to pick it up. Which actually might work to my advantage (assuming he didn’t sell out at the sale) because he’s closing the nursery and as of the 23rd everything is 30% off. This is sad news, his booth was one I always enjoyed visiting at the shows.

Okay, the new plants….

the test subject
A small $4 Acacia pravissima. I’ll kep my larger one in a container where I can protect it during any freak cold snaps and put this little guy in the ground. We’ll see how that goes.
the duplicate
I had regretted only buying on of this gorgeous Dyckia hybrid, Burgundy Ice at the YGP Show in the spring. Now I have two!
the addition to a collection
An Eryngium proteiflorum (that’s it above with the Dyckia too). This one turned out to be a major score! And I just bought it because I love Eryngiums and didn’t have this one. Little did I know that the blooms look like this!...
Bloom photos borrowed from: http://jehuite.blogspot.com/
According to Annie’s Annuals: A rare, STUNNING Eryngium from Mexico that bears very large, silvery white, Protea-like blooms on erect, multi-branching stems, 3’ to 5’ tall. Lustrous, jagged-edged, silvery foliage, too. Thrives in poor, dry, well-drained soil & fab in a container. Incredible cut flower fresh or dried.

I may just put it in a container like they suggest. All the better to give it that “dry, well-drained soil” it wants.

the pair of sexy new acquaintances
Phlebodium pseudoaureum or Blue Fern. I first saw these in someone else’s hands at the sale. I was curious.

And very excited when I found them and saw they weren’t too expensive and they should grow here in the ground (zone 8-10). Crazy foliage!
That’s my wrap up. So if you went, what did you buy?


  1. Oh I love the Himalayan Pine! I probably would pick one of those up even though I probably have no where to put it.

  2. I love that last plant...what is it!?! I'm glad you made it out in spite of your funk over winters approach :-) I'm intrigued by that Mahonia, I wasn't really fond of them when I first moved to Portland, but lately have been feeling a change of heart toward them. Oh, and those Rhodies are awesome in person...so big!

  3. Frugal, me too. The ever present issue of space!

    Scott...DUH! Thanks for asking. I've added the name. How did I miss that, big DUMB oversight. It's a Phlebodium pseudoaureum or Blue Fern. I used to hate Mahonia, or at least the idea of them. My mother grew "Oregon Grape" and I thought they were so ugly! I had my friend Erin act as a hand model (for scale) with the Rhodies in one picture. But of course that was the picture that was too out of focus to use.

  4. Bless you for the sale overview pictures. As I commented on Ricki's blog, I didn't manage to get to the sale at all, so I'm very glum seeing all the fall booty (but glad you are sharing, believe me!)

    I agree with you about those big-leaved rhodies. They have sex appeal for me. And I do like the blue ferns you picked out - just lovely foliage. Although I like every eryngium I've ever seen, your proteiflorum is spectacular. Not only does it look cool as a plant, it has totally cool blooms!

    Great shopping, and obviously a fun time!

  5. I love it! Those ferns are fantastic, too.

  6. So different re: your fall planting personality - down here in Texas, its best to get 'em into the ground in the fall so they can get enough roots to survive the next summer!

    And I too am wanting Mahonias more & more as I discover new varieties. Now if they could only come out with a variegated one...

  7. I walked around with that linearifolium in my box for awhile, but put it back. I've got too many rhodies ... and that pine nearly went in as well. I resisted...

  8. Hi Loree, Sounds like a fun day. Your careful plant choices illustrate your enviable self-discipline. Sometimes I swear I want to rip out everything I have and start over... with all your plants. :)

  9. All I can say is "oooooooooooohhhh" Very pretty!

  10. Hmm I was wavering about going to the Desert Museum's butterfly plant sale this weekend but after seeing this I don't think I can resist. The Eryngium is amazing!

  11. Amazed, yet again, at the finds you come away with every time. My Acacia was going great guns right up until that big snow, when it turned up its toes. Its skeletal remains are left standing and quite handsome.
    Pinus densiflora 'Oculus Draconis', or Dragon's Eye pine, is the name of the first evergreen. I have to have anything with Dragon in its name.
    The Eryngium looks like the perfect addition to the danger garden. I want one too.

  12. Well, this is an awesome plant-shop experience if you ask me..I wonder if I can time my 4th quarter Portland visit to coincide with this event ?

  13. Jane, this just means you can go even more crazy at the spring sale!

    Dirty Girl, I am kind of wishing I would have bought three of them.

    RBell, just you wait! You know it's coming soon!

    linda, there were three of them when I grabbed mine. I wonder why I only took one?

    Grace, but I don't have nearly enough pink for you to be happy!

    K&V, hi there! I was just thinking I needed to go check out your blog!!!

    Les, you will share what you buy won't you? I bet there are some amazing things to be had there!!!

    ricki, thank you for the name! I just planted the little Acacia today I tried to pick a good protected spot. The weather guys are saying scary things about this winter. I hope I didn't just sentence it to death.

    ks, YES! Do it! But don't let them steal your plants again at the border.

  14. Oh good you got that Eryngium proteiflorum. I got one too. When I picked it up there was one orphan left at the stand, and that seemed a shame. It was kind of a bargain, too. I did what has become my usual self-deceiption. First I said I would plant it in the neighbor's sunny front yard. Then I decided the one bare spot at the very entrance to my patio just maybe gets enough sun, and in the ground it went. I love it so much I want to look at it all the time.


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