Thursday, July 25, 2013

Where the aeoniums are…

I bet you think this is another post about a garden in California...

Nope. This one is right here in Oregon, Portland to be exact...

Those of you familiar with Thomas Hobbs books Shocking Beauty or The Jewel Box Garden might have done a double take and thought for just a moment this was his old home and garden.

Turns out the owner is aware of the resemblance, having been introduced to the books when shopping for plants and asking advice at Portland Nursery.

I was introduced to this garden by my plant lust partner Patricia (it pays to have garden spies!), she recommended I stop by and check it out so I did. As luck would have it the owner was unpacking the car having just returned from a weekend away and was willing to talk plants with a stranger.

I've never seen such happy aeoniums here in the PNW...

Nice that the twin yucca both bloomed this year...

The current owners added these built-in planting areas along the front walk.

As you might imagine the tender plants get hauled inside for the winter.

The ones in the ground are dug up in the fall, replanted in the spring.

They seem pretty happy with this arrangement.

The (tiny) parking strip...

At first I missed the little agave pup tucked in among the sedum.

Containers along the driveway...



I was invited around back to see the work in progress of a new planting bed, water garden, and the perfect patio for turning into a winter greenhouse. Of course the view kept pulling my attention away from the garden...

Hopefully I'll be invited back to see how it all takes shape!

All material © 2009-2013 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited.

52 comments:

  1. What a lovely garden and interesting house, very much California-style. I've been thinking of maybe trying what they do, putting non-hardy stuff in the ground for the summer and digging it up to over-winter inside, but not sure how they would cope with that. Theirs seem to do just fine. I actually saw a pot of a dark multi-branched Aeonium at Lowes yesterday. I almost bought it, but ended up with a large, flowering Aloe glauca instead.

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    1. In my experience Alison most plants love the opportunity for a summer vacation in the soil. If I have an agave that just isn't looking it's best (and I think it's worth "saving") then I'll take it out of the container for the summer and plant it. Come fall I did it up (this is for not hardy ones like A. attenuata)...this seems to work wonders! I also do this for other tender succulents like Blue Chalk Sticks (Senecio mandraliscae)

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    2. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! My new addiction! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

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  2. This is one of the nicest examples I've seen of aeoniums used as annual flower substitutes. With the blossoming succulents and the colored aeonium rosettes those beds are "blooming", and play off the house and walls beautifully. I see they couldn't resist a little annual color in the beds near the house...maybe next year it will be full of more succulents!

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    1. Good eye Jane, spotting the color spots. I was completely oblivious as I stared at the succulents.

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    2. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am not in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

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  3. Amazing garden with so many great textures working there. It's also an amazing amount of work they do to get the look they want.

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    1. I was wondering...do I spend more time hauling containers in and out of storage, or do they panting and digging? Different approach for sure but probably about the same time.

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    2. AnonymousJuly 26, 2013

      I was wondering...

      I've got a nice little collection of these in/out of containers in my Lewiston Idaho garden. I know i am going to need to take them in for the winter. Considering they are active growers in the winter(right?), where would be the best place to "store" them? Bright warm window? Feed them?

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    3. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revise quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

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    4. Anon, I store mine in the basement under grow lights. They actually don't do too much growing but just sort of hunker down and stay alive, waiting until summer (ours) rolls around again.

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  4. A beautiful home and garden! And those plants - ooh la, la!

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    1. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

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  5. I really coverted the aeoniums in SF. I have lots but they are tiny by comparison. I wonder if planting them out in the summer might be better for them than living in pots, it might be worth trying one or two next summer.

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    1. There's in containers seemed to be pretty darn happy too...but I do think trying a few in the ground is a grand idea.

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    2. This is Dale, the homeowner. I seem to have great results by moving my potted plants to the ground for the summer. My bird of paridise only blooms if I do so.

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    3. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

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  6. It takes a lot of dedication to dig up half your flowerbed and store it somewhere for the winter.

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    1. Sounds like you won't be going this route any time soon?

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    2. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

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  7. Wow! I really did think it was a page out of one of Thomas Hobbs books at first. I haven't even seen Aeoniums of that variety growing as well in SoCal. Do you know what the plant in the 5th picture is? It looks a little like an Eryngium but, if so, I don't recognize the variety.

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    1. Kris that is an Eryngium, E. agavifolium...it's a fabulous plant, one of my favorites!

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    2. This is Dale, the homeowner. The bees LOVE this plant which makes it extra fun. I'd be glad to let you see them up close and take some starts. Call me at 503 754-8424 if you are interested.

      Delete
    3. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

      Delete
  8. It's tempting to dwell on all the work involved in pulling this off, but I declare it a labor of love and vow to simply appreciate it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

      Delete
  9. Amazing dedication to repeat this ritual every year. But so worth it. I too hope you'll be invited back.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

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  10. Wow! what a marvelous garden! So many beautiful specimens

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    1. What we plant lovers are willing to do, right?

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  11. ooo lala fantastic shots wonderful landscape

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    1. "ooo lala"...well said Sharon!

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    2. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

      Delete
  12. With the design of the house, and being such a sunny day when you visited it does look like California. Lovely garden and view!

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    1. You've got me wondering about a grey rainy day. Of course the color of the house would help chase the grey away.

      Delete
    2. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

      Delete
  13. A lovely well laid out garden, the greeny grey spiky plant in the shape of a ball, in the first few pics, caught my eye, could you tell me what it is?

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    1. Karen that's a Yucca rostrata, beautiful isn't it? Lovely when the wind blows too.

      Delete
    2. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

      Delete
  14. This is an amazing garden! Can you tell me the names of the white and yellow flowering plants? Sorry to sound ignorant but I've only recently started to introduce succulents to my garden.

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    1. No need to apologize Mara, we're all always learning! I know they're sedums of some sort but I can't tell you which ones for sure. Maybe the homeowner will chime in with i.d.?

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    2. This is Dale, the homeowner. Sorry I don't know the name but I'd be glad to let you see them up close and take some starts. Call me at 503 754-8424 if you are interested.

      Delete
    3. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

      Delete
  15. I really enjoyed all the succulents--especially the built-in planting areas in the front. Very nice! Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Those planters just set off the walkway perfectly don't they? The house wouldn't have the same presence without them.

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    2. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

      Delete
  16. Wow!!!! I'm in love! Seriously! That is one darn fantastic place.

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    1. When you come visit we'll do a drive-by! You are coming to visit right?

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    2. I think I simply must. I'll pull out the calendar and figure this out!

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    3. This is Dale, the homeowner. I can't tell you how flattered Marilyn (my wife) and I are with your interest and the other commenters on Loree's blog posting. It is really a labor of love to move them each year but it's only a big deal because the aoniums grow so easily if fertilized, watered, and kept from freezing. I use a "Pot Lifter" on the big ones to move them each October and May. I have a bird of paradise that blooms in the winter inside if it gets to send the summer outside. I started this approach with the idea of just having one or two accent plants and they've taken over my gardening life! I figured I'd quit or cut back when it stopped being fun, but I am now in the process of building a winter greenhouse in my back yard to keep them alive for 6 months of possible frosts. My new addiction! Actually, they revive quickly in the spring as long as they are kept from freezing in the winter. I'm not very knowledgable about plant names but would be glad to share starts with you anytime. Best wishes, Dale.

      Delete
  17. I was in plant lust over the burgundy Aeoniums after a trip to S. Calif. and bought a tiny one here, but I couldn't seem to make it happy and it wasted away. i wish I had just planted it outside. What a great garden.

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