Monday, September 30, 2019

The Chatfield affair...

I'm not finished with my 2019 Garden Bloggers Fling coverage—I still have several gardens to share—but I am jumping to the final event...

Our buses dropped us of here, in front of the visitors center, at Chatfield Farms, a 700-acre native plant refuge and working farm in Littleton, CO—it's part of the Denver Botanic Gardens organization.

Unfortunately it was late on a Sunday and the visitors center was closed.

And the sky was ominous.

They dropped us quite far away from where we were to gather for dinner, I'm sure the idea was we'd wander the garden en-route. But the thing was, rain threatened and my bladder called out for facilities (TMI?)...

Yucca glauca

So I didn't do much exploring beyond the main pathway.

Yucca baccata

I think it's fascinating to see yucca seedpods forming. We don't have the pollinator required for that to happen here in Portland. At least not that I've ever seen.

The long, low green shrub is Arctostaphylos x coloradensis.

Even just shooting photos from the main pathway there was a lot to admire.

However, after reading a recent blog post on Chatfield from the Miserable Gardener (here) I see that I did miss quite a bit.

The eremurus were fantastic.

And then there was this. It's the second Patrick Dougherty sculpture I've seen on a Fling, the first was in Reston, during the DC area Fling (here).

I did go off-path to check it out.

But once there I realized it was filled with mosquitoes.

They don't usually bother me, but this time it was different.

I made a hasty retreat.

But then realized I was required to cross a bridge over a low, still creek.

There were even more mosquitoes.

I still managed to snap a photo of the plants...

Then I came upon a trio of unexpectedly huge containers...

Ah, there's the red barn, our dinner destination.

Keep off water feature? Out of water feature?

Now that's cool. I want one in my garden...can you imagine having this as tall observation tower?

Okay time to head into the barn and hang with my fellow bloggers. And no, in case you're wondering, I did not leave mosquitoes behind. They were even in the bathroom...

Weather Diary, Sept 29: Hi 52, Low 44/ Precip .35" (that high of 52 is our lowest high temperature in 71 years here in Portland. We should be in the 70's this time of year)

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

Friday, September 27, 2019

Bromeliads in the landscape, during the Bromeliad Summit

I saw an amazing collection of gardens during the Bromeliad Summit last April in Santa Barbara (this one, and this one, and this one, for example). While they all featured a few plants in the bromeliad family, the biggest display of what I traditionally think of as bromeliads was in a garden I wrote about earlier in the month, in this post. Since I can't name most of them—Alcantarea imperialis (Vriesea imperialis), below, being the single exception—this is just going to be an eye-candy post.

No words, just photos...well okay, other than to say, can you imagine being able to grow these plants in the ground? Outside in your garden, year-round? Ya, it must be amazing. As cold weather is on the horizon and I've spent a good deal of time over the last couple of days bringing in my bromeliads, I'm especially envious.

Tree ferns and bromeliads make a nice pairing, don't you agree?

Yes, I could be very happy living here...

Weather Diary, Sept 26: Hi 69, Low 52/ Precip 0

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

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Christine and Jim Mitchell's garden, a stop on the HPSO Study Weekend

This was my second visit to Christine and Jim Mitchell's garden, the first was on a very smoky day in 2015 when a few of us garden bloggers visited on preview for the HPSO/Garden Conservancy tour.

The reason for this latest visit was the HPSO Study Weekend, held the last weekend in June. The garden was even better than I remembered it. And it's not just because there were agaves...

The photographer with the lily where his head should be (to the right) was an accidental capture. I couldn't have done that on purpose no matter how heard I tried.

This 1/3 acre garden sites on a corner lot, from our handout: "plants in this garden are selected for foliage—color, shape, texture and multi-season impact" wonder I feel at home here! Abies concolor I believe...

Robinia pseudoacacia 'Twisty Baby', a tree I really wish I had room for.

Chris does lift the many Agave americana 'Variegata' planted throughout the garden, they simply will not make it through our winters. She over winters them in her garage and since they're dormant there's no need for strong lights or water, just a little heat to keep them from freezing.

Late June is lily season, so many of the gardens we toured during Study Weekend smelled wonderful.

Rhododendron basilicum

Rhododendron 'I Wish I Knew" (do you?) *update* Chris says this one is Teddy Bear Yakushimanum Rhododendron...

Now we've stepped into the back garden, the gunnera are kept happy in a stock tank.

More from the handout: "in the backyard garden, there are two brick patios for entertaining, multiple trellises covered with clematis and hops (used by the resident home brewer), and stone paths created for exploration by grandchildren and an energetic border collie."

I thought the wood and rebar "fence" was genus for keeping the grandchildren and border collie out of the various plantings.

So minimal as to not distract from the plants...

But significant enough to stop two or four legged creatures.

Dryopteris sieboldii, on the far left.

Mahonia confusa 'Narihira', a Dan Hinkley/Monrovia introduction

Rhododendron 'Everred' (or 'Ever Red', depending on who you go pay attention to).

Chris has put together quite a collection of succulents. Many of them potted...

And some of them in the ground.

The dried packing material—we called that excelsior back in my retail days, or maybe it's actually Spanish moss?—hides the nursery pot the agave is planted in. Just dropping it in the glazed container makes moving it, when the weather turns, much easier.

I believe these all stay in place.

Agave parryi and A. bracteosa.

But that tall guy on the right is lifted and taken indoors.

That's a very happy opuntia, with all that new growth (the bright green pads).

Blooms too!

A few more shots looking around the "desert corner"...

Acanthus senni

The collection really has grown since I was here last!

Which maybe why Chris had filled this wagon with agaves for visitors to take as they left the garden. Wasn't that nice?

Weather Diary, Sept 18: Hi 73, Low 55/ Precip 0

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