Friday, July 21, 2017

The garden of Jeff Minnich, a stop on the 2017 Capitol Region GB Fling

Back to the Capitol Region and the recent Garden Bloggers Fling...this garden, at the home of designer Jeff Minnich, was our 4th stop on Saturday. Jeff gardens in Arlington, Virginia, don't let that Tillandsia usneoides (aka Spanish moss) fool you...

The entrance to the garden, off the driveway, became a little clogged as my fellow bloggers couldn't help but pause to snap a photo, or two, as they worked their way toward the back garden. I killed time by strolling up and down the street side of the garden and taking a few photos as I walked...

Finally it was my turn to work into the queue.

I must admit, the plant palette surprised me — I love an adventurous gardener! Ensete maurelii backed by a Cycad...

The Spanish moss really was over the top...(in a very good way)...

Jeff confirmed they bring up bundles every year for use around the garden.

To great effect!

There are also numerous (and large) containers throughout the garden, each featuring a large specimen plant, like this Begonia, that can't possibly be hardy in their Zone 7 garden (can they?)...

Passing under the columns you work your way down, along the side of the house, with a gentle stream and waterfall at your side. great use of a steep drop off in the topography.

But not before you come face to face with another luscious window-box...

Once on the lower, mid-level, of the property there is so much to see...

Like this collection of severed heads...

And an Agave that collects victims.

Smarter gardeners than I will be able to identify this Begonia. It must be hardy because I saw it in the ground everywhere in the DC area...

Time to venture down the steps to the lower parts of the garden. Ann leads the way...

It's a long way down there...

Looking back up.

My fellow Portland Blogger Jane (aka the Mulchmaid) was enamored with this variegated green on yellow shrub. I'm not certain of it's ID but it looks a lot like Aucuba japonica 'Overlook' from Cistus Nursery.


Heading back up the opposite side of the property.

Where we run into Heather demonstrating exactly what portion of her body the outdoor shower walls would cover. I think Jeff and his partner might be a little taller...

Weather Diary, July 20: Hi 75, Low 60/ Precip 0

All material © 2009-2017 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Potted, the book (a review and a give-away)

Most of my readers probably realize I'm a huge fan of Potted, in Los Angeles. I've visited the store several times, and wish they were closer — they're just so GOOD. I've known there was a Potted book in the works for a couple of years now, since Annette asked me for a photo to include in the book (more on that below). To say I was excitedly anticipating holding it in my hands is an understatement...

The book briefly touches on the origins of Potted and we learn that tile-inset-pavers, and perfecting the technique of creating them, were the impetus behind Mary and Annette opening the store. I took a photo of a few of those pavers in the hellstrip in front of the shop when I first visited back in 2012...who knew? I just thought they were fabulous.

Anyway, the book...

In the very first paragraph Mary and Annette (henceforth referred to as "the authors") acknowledge that "outdoor planters are seductive and sultry as they lure you in with their rich colors and clean lines. You can hardly wait to add them to your garden — until you see the price tag, which can be out of reach for many budgets." How refreshing is that? The owners of a high-style retail store are acknowledging that many of us can't afford to purchase the items they sell. And yes, before anyone has to point it out I do have two Circle Pots and a Point Pot. All of which I hold near and dear, but. But those were splurges, special focal points. I should also be able to find (or make) less expensive options that don't lack for style, right? That's just what the authors show us how to do...

The projects (23 total) are broken into sections based on the materials used to create them: concrete, plastics, metals, terra-cotta, and organic materials. I love this way of classifying, you can read them all for inspiration but then hone in on your favorite materials. Like metal, you know I'm a lover of stock tanks and they show you how to customize the look, in case "all silver" isn't your thing...
photo © Potted, used by permission
 
I think we're all familiar with the cinder block planter wall originated by the ladies of Potted (see an Anthropologie version here), but for the book they've jazzed it up with painted nooks accented with candles.
photo © Potted, used by permission
 
What I find most useful about this book (and Handmade Garden Projects, by Lorene Edwards-Forker, which is listed in the "further reading" section at the back of the book) is the inspiration the projects provide. You may not replicate a project exactly as it's done in the book (which has amazingly detailed materials lists and how to photos) but you'll be inspired and learn techniques that will enable you to take off in your own direction...

Case in point? Their "Flying Saucer Planters"...
photo © Potted, used by permission
 
Inspired by my dish planters...

The authors couldn't find the exact materials I used but that didn't matter, they created their own version...just like you can do with the ideas in the book. For example I'm crushing on their PVC planter. I could do something like this with the metal fence posts I use for the base of my dish planters...
photo © Potted, used by permission
 
Are you thinking you need to own this book? Well you're right, of course. If you're in the L.A. area I'm sure you can pick it up at Potted. It you're not you can purchase it from the Timber Press website (note: Hardy Plant Society of Oregon and Pacific Horticulture members get 35% off the list price of Timber Press books!) or from Amazon.

AND...Timber Press has generously supplied me with a copy to give-away! Just comment below to be entered to win. Of course I'd love to hear about any containers you've DIY'd, or hope to learn to DIY, but any comment will get you entered to win — as long as (and this is IMPORTANT) you include a way for me to get in touch with you (a link to an active blog or an email address) and you're in the contiguous USA. All comments left before midnight July 26th will be eligible. The winner will be announced on Thursday the 27th. Good luck!

Weather Diary, July 19: Hi 82, Low 56/ Precip 0

Photos of POTTED book projects used by permission from Timber Press. Timber Press supplied me with a complimentary review copy of the book, all opinions are my own. All other material © 2009-2017 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Wednesday Vignette, Western Tiger Swallowtail

The garden is alive with flying and buzzing creatures. This one was nice enough to sit still for a moment. Just a moment...

Weather Diary, July 18: Hi 84, Low 57/ Precip 0

Wednesday Vignettes are hosted by Anna at Flutter & Hum. All material © 2009-2017 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Danger!

Those who follow me on Instagram may recognize this image...

I snapped the photo in our hotel room during the Capitol Region GB Fling. The kind Laurin Lindsey of Ravenscourt Gardens had spotted these vintage DANGER signs on Etsy and purchased one for me.

Once home I tried it out in various places around the garden, but I think this is where it's destined to live...

It was Andrew who suggested I take advantage of the fact the sign is metal, and use magnets to attach it somewhere. I like the fact it's not permanent and I can move it if the mood strikes. Although for now this just feels perfect.

Metal is certainly a consistent theme throughout the garden. Earlier this summer I found a online supplier for custom cut galvanized steel and ordered a top for this cheap IKEA table.

I have no idea what this little metal piece was supposed to be (picked up at the ReBuilding Center), but naturally it became a planter. While I was immediately drawn to its shape, it took Andrew to point out its similarity to our oval stock tanks.

This gorgeous Cryptanthus was a gift from The Practical Plant Geek (as were the others in the planter)...

I still may plant up this Steel Life Mod Dish, from last fall's visit to DIG. But for now it's become a sort of catch all for small Tillandsia and bits I pick up around the garden, like fallen (unpollinated?) cones from the Magnolia macrophylla...

Empty wasps nests (the brown bit is a resurrection fern, in need of resurrection).

Callistemon seed pods.

Okay the sand dollar didn't actually come from my garden, instead a visit to the beach with a friend, years ago...

And the Eucalyptus button came from a garden in California.

One of the gifted Tillandisa I received a few weeks ago is blooming, wait I'm repeating myself. I shared that a couple of days ago on Bloomday didn't I?

What else should I focus on? Oh, the Bromeliads...

They're looking good. Although the big one on the right has lost some of its purple color, since it's in so much shade. Bummer.

The hanging containers...I decided to try Dichondra argentea in this (oddly shaped) chartreuse pot.

The painted ferns are still doing well in the orange Hover Dish.

And the orange circle pot got a mix of Bromeliad and Tillandsia this year. It's a pity this photo doesn't really show the remarkable color of that Bromeliad.

But then again this post was supposed to be all about the DANGER sign...I just tend to ramble.

It's perfect.

Weather Diary, July 17: Hi 81, Low 55/ Precip 0

All material © 2009-2017 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.