Friday, March 22, 2019

Where I return to the garden of Marcia Donahue

Sometimes I have to pinch myself, am I dreaming or is this real?

Turns out on this particular occasion it was very real.

December 7th, 2018 and I was standing in front of Marcia Donahue's house in Berkeley, CA. There's Marcia herself!

I was visiting with my fellow Pacific Horticulture board members. We had a meeting scheduled for the next day but were squeezing in a few garden tours first.

This was my second visit to Marcia's garden, the first was in September of 2014 (here). In case you're not familiar with Marcia's work she's a ceramic artist. These huge beads are her creation and hang in a tree at the front of her house.

These are also her work.

She's amazing! And she's built quite the garden to go with these sculptures.

Heading down the narrow side garden...(that's Lorene Edwards Forkner, she of the fabulous #seeingcolorinthegarden studies on Instagram)...

Wouldn't this be nice to have in your garden? Perhaps a warming dip before dinner?

And we're just about to the back garden...(that's Jennifer Jewell, the host of Cultivating Place)

Looks like a couple different pyrrosia.

The pond!

Someday I'd like to purchase a couple of Marcia's bulbs.

Or maybe her turkey-tail lichen?

Tree tomatoes! Aka tamarillo.

They are edible.

At first I thought this might be the flower of the tamarillo but it's not, it belongs to something else growing nearby.

The garden contains many more tillandsia and bromeliads than I saw on my prior visit.

I am so completely envious of those who live in a climate where these plants can stay outdoors year-round.

The plants and the artwork just blend together seamlessly.

Marcia pointed out that the ceramic turkey-tails came first, the natural one just appeared on its own.

Another plant and flower mash-up that's not a "real-life" combo.

What's real and what's artwork? Sometimes it's hard to tell.

Cannomois grandis

Time to follow the pathway back around to the front of the house.

If you're in Berkeley on a Sunday Marcia opens her garden on most Sunday afternoons (3017 Wheeler St. Berkeley CA). You really should visit.

Weather Diary, March 21: Hi 59, Low 47/ Precip trace

All material © 2009-2019 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

22 comments:

  1. What a fascinating garden. The ceramic bamboo poles with the color swirls are so cool, I love the very real looking added bits, like the mushrooms and flowers; the moth is absolutely fantastic. It is inspiring to be in the present of great talent, isn't it?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Pretty amazing on all levels. And you are right about the climate. You could never have many of those ceramic items here with our winds and snow.; though we do know of some great bowling ball sculptures locally.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh gosh yes, I wasn't even thinking of the ceramic items, just the plants...but you're so right!

      Delete
  3. What a fab garden -- lucky you! I love the subtle colors and patterns she uses in her ceramic sculptures. Like you, I'd love to own a piece of her art some day.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The first time I visited she wasn't home, so obviously purchasing was out of the question. This time just seemed like it would be tacky to have asked. Maybe the third time is the charm...

      Delete
  4. One of my favorite gardens ever! Marcia's work is inspiring and, like you, I'm a bit jealous of her ability to grow so many of those plants outside.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Can you imagine what it would be like to never again face the great migration?

      Delete
  5. That orange flower in the not real "mash up" looks like Masdevallia veitchiana and would probably be pretty happy living with an orchid cactus!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It took quite awhile to be sure they weren't actually one and the same.

      Delete
  6. What a fabulous garden! I love her art and how it is intermingled with plants. I miss living where it doesn't freeze too! Thank you for the cool tour! Happy Spring : )

    ReplyDelete
  7. I enjoyed the sculpture as much as the garden itself - and that's not something I can usually say!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too, one of those rare gardens where they're equally enchanting.

      Delete
  8. How big is Marsha's garden? It looks huge. Love that gorgeous red bromeliad in the first couple of pictures.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I really have no idea but I'd guess maybe twice as big as mine? Which would make it about 90' x 111'???

      Delete
  9. I love Marcias garden so much, and what a gracious hostess she is as well. I hope I make it down there this year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hmmm...I might have to beg you to buy one of her pieces for me...

      Delete
  10. Such cool organic art - I love the woodgrain effect. Meshes perfectly with her garden plants.

    ReplyDelete
  11. What a treat. Thank you for sharing. I love her sculptures.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thanks for that tour--and Marcia's open gardens info! I would so love to do that. Those shroom sculptures!(8th photo). And the front yard plants. Wow.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for taking the time to comment. Comment moderation is on (because you know: spam), I will approve and post your comment as soon as possible!