Last Saturday I had the pleasure of talking with a group of Hardy Plant Society of Portland (HPSO) members interested in learning more about growing succulents. The workshop was held in my garden, the closest thing to an open garden event that I’ve had. I wondered if we would all fit (my garden is small, and there were 17 people plus me!), and most importantly what would they think of my garden! I shouldn’t have worried though, everyone was wonderful and if they saw things that horrified them they kept it to themselves. So after I conquered the garden fears my main concern (besides the whole “public speaking” thing) was; would I be able to share any information with these gardeners that they don’t already know? (the workshop wasn’t my idea, I was asked to do it by a friend at the HPSO). They had all registered in advance and paid a small sum of money to spend a sunny Saturday morning in August listening to me carry on; I’d better make it worth their while right? Then inspiration hit! I figured if I wasn’t able to impart any worthwhile knowledge I could at least make sure they left with a gift. So I started with Timber Press and asked if they would consider donating a copy of Debra Lee Baldwins “Succulent Container Gardens,” and they did! So now I was on a roll and not about to stop...what about plants? I should give away some succulents! I contacted Garden Fever, Cistus Design Nursery, Rare Plant Research and Digs Inside & Out…guess what, they all gave me plants for the workshop participants, many of them more than one, everyone knows gardeners are generous people; turns out nursery owners are too! Unfortunately the morning of the workshop I was running around tidying up, cutting lemons for ice water and generally stressing out so I forgot to take a picture of all the plants I had to give away. Dumb me! There were some real treasures (secretly I was hoping maybe a couple people who registered wouldn’t show up and I’d get to keep the leftovers, but that didn’t happen). A big THANK YOU to all that donated…our locally owned Portland Nurseries are the best! The pictures throughout this post are of my garden, taken this weekend. Knowing that other gardeners are going to be wandering through your garden is a great motivator to tidy up! Unfortunately the pictures are posted in a completely random fashion as I didn’t have time to put them in any order. I should also give Mother Nature a little credit for a gorgeous day in the garden, the morning started with clear blue skies and just the slightest breeze, perfect! Later that afternoon Portland finally reached the 90 degree mark (96 to be exact) for the first time this summer! As you might imagine the plants were all lovin the heat. A big thank you to everyone who showed up on Saturday, I only wish that all of you that read my blog could have been here! We could have all squeezed onto the patio, right?