This was the one private garden on the Toronto GB Fling for which we were given the go-ahead to name the owner, Marion Jarvie. It turns out she’s quite the advocate for gardening and is very active in the Toronto gardening community; lecturing and teaching at the Toronto Botanical Garden.
As you can see we bloggers immediately fanned out across her garden snapping photos.
There was a lot to focus on.
Fatsia japonica 'Spider's Web', one of the stand out plants from the 2014 (Portland) GB Fling…and now here it is in Toronto, where it's not hardy! This was my first indication that this garden was going to be a little different.
Sedum Sunsparkler® 'Firecracker' – I need to find this plant.
As we moved from the front garden into the back we passed by a rather lovely greenhouse.
What a set-up! A little jealous and a lot curious I wondered just exactly what she did with all that space.
Entering the back garden I was surprised to see Syneilesis aconitifolia, the shredded-umbrella plant. I don’t know why I was surprised exactly, after all it is hardy to USDA Zone 4 – not the slightest bit tropical even if it kind of looks that way.
And then I stepped out into the open, as you can see plenty of my fellow bloggers beat me there!
I’m still not entirely sure why but this was a fairly polarizing garden. I guess some of the group just didn’t get it. I got it, I loved it. This is a woman who loves plants and wants to be surrounded by all her favorites, in fact it says so right on her website: “The garden covers nearly half an acre in Thornhill, just north of Toronto, Ontario. It's a plantswoman's garden where an effort is made to grow and display plants of every description.”
Heck ya! Case in point, a trio of spiral Aloes, A. polyphylla.
Along with a striking Astelia in a classical container.
There were several plants throughout the garden that I was unfamiliar with, but loved. Like this splotchy variegated one.
And this one, which is familiar but I couldn't quite place it.
I have to admit that in some ways this garden had me thinking of the Butchart Gardens all way over on the west coast of Canada, in B.C. on Victoria Island. The way she mixes foliage in shades of green, blue, gold and burgundy on planted islands within a network of grass paths…
Well I couldn’t help but see this well-known image in my mind. Although Marion's garden is done on a much more human (relatable) scale and without all the annoying flowers. (Butchart Gardens photo credit to Robthepiper via Wikimedia Commons).
And then if you go and throw in an Agave attenuata, well hello! Just call me at home.
And guess what? There were more Agaves!
Agave americana var. medio-picta 'Alba'
And a whole bunch of potted (tender) succulents. Now we know what she does with that fabulous greenhouse.
I was thrilled to see these here, thrilled. Agave 'Kissho Kan'
Agave 'Blue Glow'
Well, and then a reminder that we are in a cooler clime...
Acer pseudoplatanus 'Esk Sunset' (I think)...
Berberis 'Admiration' (I want)...
Oh! Another Agave americana var. medio-picta 'Alba'.
And Aeoniums, just blending in.
Well, as much as they can with their fabulous super-model like ways.
Pulsata vulgaris seed heads are even more photogenic when they're backed by a Yucca Bright Star.
I know so very little about Begonias, nothing really. Is this beauty hardy?
Abies concolor 'Glauca Compacta' (wow!)
Even after 40 minutes we're still all clicking away!
What a garden! Thanks Marion for sharing it with us...your dose of zonal-denial was just what this gardener needed to see.
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