Thursday, September 12, 2019

Visiting the garden of Panayoti Kelaidis

I cheated.

We visited many wonderful gardens during the 2019 GB Fling in Colorado, but we had an extremely short amount of time in some of them, Panayoti's garden for example; only 35 minutes! How do you even begin to touch the surface of a plant collectors personal garden in just over a half hour? It was painful. Thus when our group was backed up in the driveway, signing the guest book and heading—single file—down a pathway into the garden, well, I went rogue...

I cut around the left side of the garage and into the back garden. I'd go back and sign the guest book later, right now I wanted to see the plants!

I found this shocking, Adiantum venustum in Denver! I suppose I shouldn't, I mean it is the Himalayan Maidenhair after all, and it's tough.

Less tough, but still looking happy is what I want to call Athyrium niponicum, the painted fern. I suppose this is a special plant of wonderful heritage but it looks like a painted fern to me.

Now I've retraced my steps back through the rock garden plantings past the corner of the house, which was visible in my first photo. I'm heading down into the rest of the garden. Other members of my party are starting to become visible below.

The house and many tempting containers, on my right.

Damn. This was an impressive patch of Delosperma 'Fire Spinner'...

All the previous photos were taken above that rock wall, where you see Heather in her turquoise hat. I came down via steps in that slight dark indent in the wall on the left. We all assumed at one time there may have been water coming through the dark square to the right.

If I had more time I would have paid closer attention to all those containers lined up against the house.

A wrap around balcony is a treat indeed.

More containers!

Yes, containers appear to be a theme...

I was tempted to continue on into the garden going counterclockwise to everyone else's clockwise.

But I'd seen the pathways and they were narrow.

So I retraced my steps and ended up back at the beginning. Well, everyone else's beginning.

We're headed down there...

Some of the group there ahead.

Yucca elata, maybe...

Agave utahensis, maybe...

Earlier Panayoti had warned me he didn't have a lot of spikes in his garden. Please! There were so many opuntia and cylindropuntia that I lost count. A great many of them were blooming.

Of course the verbascum were a constant.

Onopordum acanthium, Scottish thistle


And oh so many containers...

Looking back where I'd come from...

Agave albopilosa, mine is starting to let loose with the white tufts too.

Spikes, spikes, spikes...

This looks like the perfect spot to sit and take it all in, doesn't it?

Unfortunately there wasn't time for that.

Must head back to the bus, or risk being left behind.

Of course that wouldn't be so bad, really.

Good bye verbascum, good bye spikes...

Thanks for looking your best for our visit.

Gotta climb those steps...

And avoid the red ants on the way out! If I remember right that's what the woven cover was marking...

Weather Diary, Sept 11: Hi 74, Low 59/ Precip trace

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


  1. A girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do! I am sneaky that way on garden tours too when I need to be. And I almost never find time to sit on a bench and just take it all in, although I respect those who do. There are many ways to appreciate a garden after all. But seeing it is the most important first step!

    1. Right you are! And I didn't want to miss anything.

  2. Only 35 minutes? The organizers could have had a mutiny on their hands. I've only been exposed to spiky plants on your blog and still I don't remember seeing an Agave as wonderfully bizarre as Agave albopilosa. (What do you get when you mix agave with a chicken...) It's hard to go wrong with hypertufa planters and succulents; I love them all.

    1. That agave is pretty crazy isn't it? Mine came from Gerhard ( and is just starting to fuzz out on the end, I'll have to share a photo soon.

  3. Thanks for going rogue, although I'd frankly have been surprised if you hadn't. Thirty-five minutes is MUCH too little time to explore that garden but you did a great job capturing its essence. What can grow in Colorado's tough climate (like ferns!) never ceases to amaze me.

    1. Thanks Kris, it was a pretty packed garden!

  4. Impressive! I like the wild meadows best.

    1. I can't fathom having the space for that.

  5. You are so adept at avoiding blogger clusters ! I need to just watch where you go and follow at a discreet distance.

  6. Given his plant knowledge and plant hunting travels, you just know most plants are special in his garden. But I think you are right that that is a plain Japanese painted fern. He's no plant snob even if he does have some great treasures.

    1. Great point, a plant lover is a plant lover!

  7. So glad you went rogue and got photos of parts of the garden/house I didn't even see -- while I stayed dutifully in line. What a thrill it was to be in his garden!

    1. I suppose I really should have kept my rule-breaking ways to myself, lest I inspire a mutiny at the next Fling.

  8. I think I might have risked getting left behind. So much to see!

  9. Oh hell. And here I thought I was a rebel. Never occurred to me to go around. And that was frustrating as everyone stopped and took a million pictures--without once seeming to notice the crowd at their back with the pitchforks. Good job. It's fun see--when you can actually see. Next time, I'll remember to be like you. Cheers

  10. I read this post last week while I was away and had to come back and comment (I don't like commenting using my phone). I wish I had noticed the other way around early on. I ended up at the tail end (possibly dead last in line), and very nearly turned around and went back to the bus to cry. It was too much after not having enough time at the DBG right before this. Thanks for sharing so many views I didn't see.

    1. Oh Alison! I'm so sorry. It really was a ridiculous set-up time wise. I'm sorry you were at the end of the line.


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