The weekend before last I spent with my friends Erin and Matt up in Seattle. I've known these two since, oh 1994? Good lord, that's almost 25 years!? I must be figuring wrong (quick math and I realize no, I'm not figuring wrong, I'm just old). Anyway...since I had last visited (Nov 2017) Matt has become a little obsessed with succulents. I'd gotten email updates from Erin but this was my first chance to actually see the collection in person, they did not disappoint...
Since the wet season in the PNW was fast approaching these all had returned to the house, I understand many of them summered outdoors, on the patio (sounds familiar).
Mangave 'Lavender Lady'
Echeveria 'Autumn Flame'
Matt has bought a few of these plants in person, but many of them have been mail-ordered. I'm in awe of how good they look. I asked if he has any recommendations, a vendor he really likes, Leaf & Clay fits that bill. He's had mixed results with plants from Esty and Ebay, but Leaf & Clay ships quality plants well. Of course I should also share that he said some best purchases he's made came from Etsy and Ebay so you never know.
Agave 'Blue Ember'
Prior to becoming a succulent-lover Matt raised and bred reptiles. Their exacting needs prepped him well for taking care of plants. I'm in awe of how well tended everything is. My poor plants only wish they might be treated this well.
Haworthia venosa tessellata, in the front there. Look at those reptile-like scales and that color! (I did find this one on Leaf & Clay, but it's green, not that fabulously stressed color)
Here's where I should admit the title of this post was unintentionally borrowed from a Timber Press book Gardening Under Lights: The Complete Guide for Indoor Growers, by Leslie F. Halleck. I haven't read it — I don't think my brain has the room to absorb the details — but Matt has obviously researched lighting and made some beautiful choices.
There were a few plants I briefly considered packing up in my bag before I headed for home...
Echeveria 'Blue Heron' (variegated) was one of them...wow!
This little guy had a similar "wow" factor going on, but then I wondered if what I initially thought was variegation might actually be sunburn? I didn't ask...but lord knows it's happened to my plants more often than I care to admit.
This, like so many of the plants, perfection!
Echeveria 'Afterglow' (I have a horrible memory of friends who'd had a little too much to drink rubbing the powdery glow off my 'Afterglow'...)
This small table and light combo is where it all started, just a year ago. How the collection has grown...(I wonder what the next year will bring?).
One more cutie before we leave the plant room, Canis domesticus 'Lucy'...
A few of the early plants have gotten kicked out from under the lights and made a home on window sills around the house.
These stylish matching pots were traded in for the terracotta you saw earlier.
Glazed pots keep the soil so much wetter, I often wonder how much happier my plants would be if I'd never said "au revoir" to terracotta?
Since we're here I wanted to share a couple of phone-photos from Erin's garden. My basement green-wall was still forefront in my mind when I saw this bamboo screen and the Cotoneaster growing through it. Doesn't it look like a few really green Tillandsia were mounted on the screen? And check out that monster huge Eucomis flower...
Out in the front garden the Eupatorium capillifolium 'Elegant Feather' is looking elegant indeed, and the Yucca aloifolia 'Purpurea' brings out the purple tones in the Eupatorium's blooms.
And check this out! PKW's be damned (*), those are some fabulous Halloween-esque seed pods from what must have been spectacular summer Phormium flowers...
*PKW = Phormium Killing Winter, the years 2008/09 and 2009/10 when virtually every Phormium in the PNW melted into a rotting clump. The years 2013/14 and 2016/17 were similar. Phrase coined by The Outlaw Gardener and not yet copyrighted.
Weather Diary, Oct 29: Hi 58, Low 46/ Precip .05"
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