Monday, January 20, 2014

Colorful conifers at Portland Nursery

I guess it’s time I confessed. In fact most of you have probably already figured it out, maybe even ahead of me...I’m starting to “get” the appeal of the conifer. Now let’s not get crazy, I’m not going to be planting any Douglas Fir trees and I still carry the scars of my Spokane youth spent raking pine needles and picking up cones by the bagful (thanks Mom). But how could you come face to face with this…in January...

And not find it beautiful? Exactly. When at Portland Nursery for the houseplant sale I went out to see if by chance I could score another Blue Pacific Shore Juniper (no luck), but I quickly became enthralled with their conifer display. Such amazing color and texture!

Cedrus deodara 'Twisted Growth'

Cupressus arizonica var. glabra 'Blue Ice'

Araucaria araucana has been a favorite for awhile.

Just to be sure there wasn't a Blue Pacific hiding from me I walked to the back of the nursery to check things out. That’s when I noticed this cram-scaped little island. I guess when the nursery is full of plants and people it’s easier to overlook.

And let’s be honest, this is actually what first caught my eye.

Poor thing's not looking too good though, I wonder if it was the ever-present threat of water?

That ground cover in front of it is quite interesting.

Anyone know what it is? I wonder if I would like it as much if it were green?

Here’s another unexpected addition, Corokia cotoneaster.

The golden hebe also called out to me…

Hebe ochracea I believe.

While it’s a beauty on the outside I do not care for the ugly insides.

It feels good to have finally come out of the conifer closet.

All material © 2009-2014 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

29 comments:

  1. Conifers are here! There's nothing to fear! Get used to it!
    Congrats!

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    1. Is your cheerleader past showing?

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  2. They are especially beautiful in the winter garden. I wish we could grow them. I think a few would work well in your newly cleared area.

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    1. Ugh, I wish it were cleared. I need to stop procrastinating! I do remember how much the Texas contingent seemed to love the conifers in Seattle during the Fling.

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  3. So many wonderful colors!

    The golden ones look so good when mixed in with all of the different tones. By themselves they just look sickly to me.

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    1. You really have issues with yellow don't you?

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  4. That first shot is lovely, and reminds me a lot of the kind of displays that Bark and Garden do so well. "Ugly insides" is one of the reasons I'm a bit put off by conifers. Like Shirley I think a nice conifer would look great in your soon-to-be-cleared area.

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    1. Are you having arborvitae thoughts Alison (ugly insides)?

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  5. Well, I'm proud of you for sharing this part of yourself. Rest assured that we still love you just as much as always. I had the same thought as Alison since I just visited Bark and Garden again on Saturday. It's hard to resist the charms of conifers, especially mixed with other evergreens, during this time of year!

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    1. Thank you for understanding and still liking me just the way I am.

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  6. There are so many beautiful, interesting, and unique looking conifers out there and glad to hear you're appreciating them more and more each year. We love some and we loathe some but those we love we adore :) hope you get hold of that juniper soon!

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    1. Oh yes, can can certainly summon up thoughts of a couple I still loathe...

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  7. Nice, that hebe must be one of the toughest, untouched after -17c here in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Really looks like a conifer, until it flowers!

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    1. Good to know it's so tough! I know my tiny 'James Stirling' certainly weren't fazed by our recent cold.

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  8. Any nursery that has a monkey puzzle tree is automatically on my A list. Add to that an Agave montana (you didn't even mentioned it!) and it becomes a nursery of special distinction :-).

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    1. Will you be able to resist the charms of the Monkey Puzzle while in Portland for the Fling? Andrew has a mental list of the ones around town. I'll have to get him to write it down so you can go on a Monkey Puzzle hunt!

      I did mention the A. montanta, although not by name. It was what I referenced when I wrote "And let’s be honest, this is actually what first caught my eye" followed by "Poor thing's not looking too good though, I wonder if it was the ever-present threat of water?"...

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  9. It was only a matter of time. Welcome to the club.
    The bronzy ground cover is quite fetching. The leaf shape is nice, but the color's the thing.

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    1. You're right it is the color. Check out the online images for Dryas octopetela (it was identified by Evan and Neil below), not nearly as great when its green and flowering.

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  10. Oh that conifer display! What a knockout! I even like the winter color of the Cryptomeria, looks more purple mixed with all the other colors, instead of just brown. That groundcover looks like a species of Dryas, but I've only seen it a few times and can't say for sure. Looks nice and full but low. Hope you find out what it is. Looks like a good groundcover!

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    1. I think you're right about the Dryas, Neil (below) called it Dryas octopetela and the photos online seem to support that. But I don't like it nearly as much when it's green and in flower!

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  11. I have a lot of respect for certain conifers and definitely think they have a place. They are beautiful. We have huge douglas fir in the yard and they certainly make a mess. But on the other hand they provide shelter and minimalize frost from settling. So in that sense they can be great at building a nice microclimate. But If I had it my way, I'd be planting acacia, eucalyptus, olives, delonix regia ... you know what I mean!?

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    1. Oh god, don't get me started on the mess caused by the Doug Fir behind us. The amount of garbage it rains down on the patio, and the containers, is amazing. And yes, of course I like your way better!

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  12. Hi , beautiful colouration. We need that boost of brightness with our dull Winters..!
    I'm working on putting more colourful evergreens in the garden for that reason. I think Evan is correct the groundcover is likely Dryas octopetela . Cheers, Neil

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    1. Thank you for the full groundcover name!

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  13. What a beautiful display! I like the plant that's near the agave, what was that? It is sort of blue and pink. I had a laugh at the 'ever present threat of water'. Haha!

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    1. I think you're referring to the conifer next to the agave? I haven't a clue...while I am starting to appreciate them I am still very ignorant when it comes to their names!

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  14. My Montezuma pine is a favourite plant of mine. I have a Sciadopitys verticillata also. I have high hopes for that one. Also I like the Halloween looks of the weeping blue atlas cedar. One more: a stand of mature Scots pine always impresses me.

    The conifers that put me off are those prissy dwarf ones (what dwarf plants DO I like?) that behave themselves. They are just plain annoying in a "teacher's pet" kind of a way.

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  15. Hooray for conifers! Dwarf, colorful conifers! Love'm!

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  16. Annnnd jaw dropped! That is so ridiculously colorful, I love it!

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