Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Mary DeNoyer's garden, a Study Weekend visit

The first garden I set out to see during the HPSO Study Weekend event in late June was that of Mary DeNoyer. She and I cross paths during local garden events and she doesn't live all that far away from me. It was odd that I hadn't visited her garden prior...

From our brochure..."Mary's garden is a 20-year experience of learning and passion. In this 75 x 100 ft organic city garden the adding of every bit of compost, tilling of the beds, digging of every hole, and placement of almost every rock and tree was done by this garden owner. And the garden is still changing! Mary expertly collects lovely shade plants including varieties of arisaema, podophyllum, saxifrage and dactylorhiza for her lush and private back area beds. She loves playing with textures of plantings. In the sunnier south-facing front garden is a collection of more drought-tolerant trees, evergreens, and perennials. Last year her rock garden was added along the drive. On the cozy, private deck off the back of the house and on the shady covered patio is a collection of garden art..."

I was thrilled to see a blooming Morina longifolia...

...or two. My plant (a gift from Bonney Lassie) is still producing that great serrated foliage, but it hasn't bloomed this year.

This Dierama, aka angels fishing rod, captured the attention of every visitor who passed by.

Faux bois planters, a little Martha Stewart touch.

The dried allium blossoms tucked into this conifer had me feeling a few Christmas vibes.

I could have stepped up to the deck here, but instead traveled around the end of the "L" shape to take in all the plants.

This gorgeous ground cover is an arabis, it was swoon worthy. Mary has promised to share a bit with me and I'm thrilled.

She does shade plants very well...

I used to have so much of this Saxifraga x geum 'Dentata', I'm not sure what happened to it. Maybe I could talk her into a piece of it too...

Wow, wouldn't you like to hang out here for a bit? There are clear plastic panels acting as a roof, should moisture fall from the sky.

x Mangave 'Bloodspot' perhaps?

It's bloomed and is now forming babies...

That's a nice paring. Cordyline 'Electric Flash' and a dark-leaved dahlia (thanks Green Zebra Market Garden).

Mary had kindly set out refreshments for the touring hordes, I was more interested in that great pot with the aeonium...

Oh! The driveway rock garden, I like it.

This short little planter, maybe a former birdbath, also caught my eye.

And this! Goodyera oblongifolia...

I definitely need to know more about this "giant rattlesnake plantain"...

This was a wonderful garden to kick off a plant focused weekend. I can't believe almost two months have passed since this visit. Summer goes so fast...

Weather Diary, Aug 19: Hi 81, Low 60/ Precip 0

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

Monday, August 19, 2019

Nepenthes reward

I bought my first Nepenthes alata at the Portland Nursery houseplant sale, January 2018. Since it's a tropical plant it had to spend the next few months under lights, in the basement. That poor plant never again saw the light of day, dying before it could get outside in the spring.

I tried again, buying a gorgeous plant at Pomarius last June. That one looked great all summer and even after the fist month or so it spent in the basement, last fall. Then we had a guest stay over Thanksgiving and the basement heat vent was opened. I didn't realize how much hot, dry, air it was blowing and since there was someone staying in the space I didn't venture down to water and mist the plants. The Nepenthes lived, but the pitchers started drying up, not a great look.

However...they're back!

I am thrilled. I've kept this plant alive and happy over a year's time and it's grown new pitchers. If I were British I might say I'm chuffed!

So what does one do upon experiencing plant success? They challenge themselves to do it again. I spotted this gorgeous Nepenthes 'Miranda' at the August Portland Nursery houseplant sale. It was expensive, and I walked away. But it kept popping back into my head, 30% off and I hadn't yet spent some money I got for my birthday. What the heck, let's see if I can have repeat success with this bad boy, named 'Miranda' I guess it's a girl...

Look at those fabulous leaves, and the beautiful (huge) pitchers...

So much drama!

The hanging pot came from Garden Fever. Plant + container, so much for that birthday money...

Weather Diary, Aug 18: Hi 77, Low 58/ Precip 0

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

Friday, August 16, 2019

Agave spotting...

I love to take the road I've not yet traveled. If I have the time I'll purposely take an alternate route wherever I'm going. That's how you discover great plantings, one's you wouldn't have otherwise known existed. On this particular day I was on my way to Portland Nursery, Division St. location. I took a few random turns and was rewarded with a huge agave...

If I had to guess I'd say it's Agave parryi var. couesii, but that's just a guess.

It doesn't look like it's ever suffered any winter damage.

There's a pup hiding in the shadows just behind it.

This guy has the arching leaves of an Agave scabra, but the color doesn't seem right.

In the shadows to the left was a whole little bunch of some kind of pups.

Looking up the street—at the house next door—its garden was worth exploring too.

I loved the opuntia, but was thrilled to discover another agave as I got closer, A. ocahui I believe.

Looking back at the first house and the Agave ocahui...

And there's more! Up near the front porch another opuntia and an agave, perhaps A. schidigera 'Shira ito no Ohi'. How wonderful is this? Two houses right beside each other, both with adventurous (for Portland) plants!

Agaves, opuntia and flamingos...now that's a match-up you don't see very often.

Another day, another agave; although this Agave ovatifolia wasn't a surprise, The location is quite near my house and I've been tracking it for years. I used the excuse of this blog post to walk by and see how it's doing.

Planted on the north side of the house I have wondered how it would do, long-term, but looks like it's getting plenty of light. If my memory is correct that pup has been there since the beginning, odd since A. ovatifolia don't usually pup.

This collection of agaves is another neighborhood find, but a new one. This is also an example of new construction, Portland in-fill style. There was one old house on this lot, now there are three tall skinnys and a regular size house on the corner.

The plants; impressively well spaced baby agaves...

And the blue/green house they actually belong to (my first photo was a little deceiving)

These agaves are gonna love their hot (with concrete and rocks) southern exposure. As long as they get enough summer water they will explode with growth! Oh, and that Sedum confusum will have this corner covered in green in no time!

This one has got to be an Agave ovatifolia...

I think this one is too, but it's suffered a bit of damage at some point.

This agave is a bit of a head-scratcher. Any guesses?

On to another unexpected agave discovery, perhaps a reward for going to get a unpleasant medical test taken care of—as it's located right across the street from a hospital and medical offices.

The large plant is another Agave parryi of some sort, I believe.

There were two other pups up near the sidewalk to the front door, one is obvious, but if you look closely you can see another in the background, partially buried by bark dust put down to get the house on the market.

Stepping back for an overall view.

Finally updates on a couple of bloomers. This is the agave I discovered about to bloom in Dundee, OR, last May (here). Andrew and I were down that way in late July and took a detour to see how it was doing. Good thing too, as my friend Denise, who had been sending me updates, tells me they've cut the bloomspike off, presumably because it was pulling the plant out of the ground and looked like it was going to topple over.

Thankfully the one nearer my home, in NE Portland, is still upright. It's buds haven't fully opened yet, so this one still has a way to go...

Weather Diary, Aug 15: Hi 83, Low 61/ Precip 0

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