Monday, May 31, 2021

My alternate early life in Monrovia, CA

I was a blond baby, a towhead. It wasn’t just the baby years either, that blond hair lasted into my toddler years and beyond. This however, is not a photo of me—although it looks a lot like my mom when she was just a little girl.

The photo appeared on our fridge one winter’s day. Andrew bought it because to him it looked like me—a girl happy to be outside—the California kid version, if I’d grown up somewhere with palm trees (there are no palm trees in Eastern Washington). What he didn’t know is that at that age I was all dresses all the time. I refused to wear pants. Funny now I haven’t worn anything but pants in at least 10 years… 

Here’s another photo from Andrew, well a postcard actually. It’s my dream opuntia tree. I would be thrilled to have this in my garden.

The back of the post card. I think it says “Monrovia 25ft high”. So, in my alternate California life perhaps I live in Monrovia, CA, with my 25 ft tall opuntia tree?

Today is Memorial Day here in the USA, what my grandparents used to call Decoration Day because it was the day you decorated the graves of your loved ones (I know for many it's about military dead but that's not how I understood the day growing up). Andrew and I will be making a trip home to Spokane soon—finally an opportunity to see my parents, after COVID has kept us apart for more than 18 months. Sadly it will also be an opportunity to memorialize, and bury my mother's brother, my Uncle Har who we lost last month. He wasn't a COVID casualty but because of COVID we weren't able to see him after our visit of December 2019. Hug your loved ones, you just never know.

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All material © 2009-2021 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Friday, May 28, 2021

Visiting the garden of Wes Younnie

My friend—artist and garden designer—Wes Younie, moved into the neighborhood a couple of years back. It's taken me much longer than it should have (I blame COVID) but I finally visited his garden last week...

It is a plant paradise, heavy on great design.

A flat of Acaena inermis ‘purpurea’ was in holding, bound for a client's garden. I love this stuff.

Peony and yucca... all the cool kids are doing it. 

Yes of course we toured with wine. It was nice to relax the COVID protocol—being fully vaccinated—and move around outdoors unmasked. Here Wes was reading a label for me.

I don't think I've ever met a rodgersia that I don't love.

Wes plans a fountain focal point at the end of this pathway, eventually.

Eccremocarpus scaber

Daphniphyllum, the same form as I saw at McMenamins in Eugene, Oregon. Turns out Gossler Farms is the source for this beauty.

Looking back towards the house. As you may have noticed earlier—and will probably see in later photo's—painting is underway. The dark charcoal color is the future.

Mahonia! And a gnome with history, I can't remember exactly, but this gnome has followed Wes for a few years now, originating in a garden he visited as a youngster.

Pretty dreamy, right? Hard to believe Wes has only been gardening here for two years.

Mahonia gracilipes (the tall large leaved plant).

Saxifraga dentata

The plants in the crack were placed there—I had to ask.

Ditto here.

This lovely spot is hidden from all except those lucky enough to enter off the alleyway.

Now we've walked back around and are touring the wide hellstrip plantings.

You can see the painting in progress here, and how wonderful to be able to walk along the edge of the garden and see all the plants at waste level!

Blechnum penna-marina

I do wish I could be successful with allium plantings. I just can't stand their deteriorating foliage and forget where they are and put a shovel through the dormant bulb. Every damn time.

Moving to the west I was thrilled to spot a couple agaves.

Sempervivum 'Gold Nugget' (mine rotted...)

Agave parryi

A happy aeonium that overwintered in place.

Another section of hellstrip...

Agave parryi and echeveria.

I think this is a mangave, and the thin "foamy" plant is Artemisia versicolor 'Sea Foam'.

The always stunning Cerinthe major 'Purpurascens'.

Looking back towards the house.

And the hellstrip plantings on the other street—as the house sits on a corner.

I didn't get the name of this dark beauty...

Allium siculum (aka Nectaroscordum siculum)

Buddleja globosa

I really wish I had room in my garden for this one.

Just a few more shots...

I'm jealous of Wes' success with Acaena inermis ‘purpurea’.

And this sedum! Mine died out so quickly that I can't remember its name.

He also has had success with that little silver moundy plant that I've killed a few times.

We end back with one of the first Agaves, because why not? Thank you Wes for sharing your stunning garden with me. There are so many stars all hanging out together, happy in their place. Well done!

All material © 2009-2021 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.