Monday, January 31, 2022

The John Fairey Garden Mosaic by Dixie Friend Gay

Back in October Pam (Digging) and I spent almost three hours wandering around the John Fairey Garden in Hempstead, Texas. It wasn't until we'd just about finished and headed to the nursery to do a little shopping, that we finally saw the recently installed mosaic mural created by Dixie Friend Gay...

From the artist's website: "John Fairey commissioned this mural for his garden in Hempstead TX. The smalti mosaic piece is a landscape depicting the vibrant exotic and native plants found on the grounds. Some of the plants shown in the mosaic were lost due to the freeze in February, 2021. The artwork is representative of the garden that John created."

It continues: "Established by John Fairey in 1971, The John Fairey Garden (formerly Peckerwood Garden) is an extraordinary preservation garden on 39 acres near Hempstead, Texas. The garden is widely acclaimed for the originality of its design, its education and conservation programs, and its exceptional collection of over 3,000 plants, including many endangered and rare plants from Mexico, North America, and Asia."

According to this article from the Garden Conservancy the piece is "seven feet tall and 24 feet long" and "features plants and animals of the garden created with roughly 100,000 pieces of glass"

I loved it. Where as many painted murals leave me cold, I've always been in awe of a tile or glass mosaic. Of course the subject matter of this piece also makes it a winner in my eyes.

Make sure you hunt this down if you visit the garden, it's just slightly off the beaten path. Oh—and if you're wondering, no, you did not miss my post (or more likely posts) on the garden, I haven't yet delved into my over 200 photos to start narrowing down and editing them—until now.

All material © 2009-2022 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Friday, January 28, 2022

A trio of Portland garden drive-bys

This first garden sighting happened back in mid-December, the same day I drove by Minh's spiky wonderland. The combo of the large Echium wildpretii and the gorgeous arctostaphylos are what caught my eye, and of course the deflated pair of echium on the far right.

Once I parked and walked closer, I also saw the agave on the front porch and a couple other Echium wildpretii. A plant-palette I approve of!

This large one is a super-beauty!

I wonder if this pair bloomed earlier in the year and the short stalks are all that remain?

This one looks nipped by cold.

Super-spiky opuntia! And another well-cared for arctostaphylos.

I like the rusty wheel/gear/reel (whatever it is) and wire.

Looks like maybe a Yucca rostrata tucked back there?

And a different kind of echium, maybe E. pininana?

Another day (but equally nice blue sky) and I happened by a house I've visited before, the Latham's. 

The last time I drove by was August of 2020 (here), I wondered then if the large variegated Agave americana would stay outside over the winter, and since it was January 9th when I took these photos I guess the answer is yes!

The wall treatment is looking great, this was Dale's answer to a blank wall that was frequently hit with graffiti. 

More agaves!

The house next door is still rather ran-down, but it's opuntia patch is doing well.

A few more shots of the sculptural Arbutus menziesii (Pacific madrone)... 

And the agaves...

Did you do a double-take at the large form climbing out of the shrubs (above)? It's what remains of some former tree trunk, but really does look like a creature doesn't it?

Now proof that Portland tends towards overcast days in the winter months! I stopped to photograph this garden because of the dedication to repetition. Well, and there are agaves.

Agave ovatifolia that is.

This sign sent me off to look for summertime images of the garden and I was not disappointed, it's the one called "Ainsworth" in their online portfolio. It's a very different garden in the growing season.

But the repeated elements of phormium, grasses, and euphorbia still hold up in the winter.

And of course once the Agave ovatifolia get a little bigger—I think I counted 5?—they'll be stealing the show!

All material © 2009-2022 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Visiting Henry Hagg Lake; in the foothills of the Oregon Coast Range

Weekend before last Andrew and I headed west for an outdoor adventure. He had fishing in mind, I just wanted to get out and stretch my legs and my eyes. Of course in January, in Oregon, that means I'm probably looking at moss, lichen and such...

There were brief pockets of sunshine as we drove the 40-ish miles to Henry Hagg Lake and the surrounding park, but the entire region was also under an air stagnation advisory. Whenever we were high enough to see sun you could also see thick layers of dark air in places with lighter air below and nothing moving, so I didn't hold out much hope the skies would clear.

So instead of wishing for blue sky and sunshine, I kept my head down and explored the various shades of green.

I posted this one on my Instagram account and learned it's a hypogymnia, perhaps Hypogymnia inactiva.

The above photos were all from our first stop, now we've moved on to another part of the park.

I love this type of moss so very much. It's just incredible.

I kept looking for some sort of shelf fungus on every single tree I passed. This group was all I saw that day.

Oak gall's are strangely beautiful.

I wonder what this was all about?

A shot of the lake before we got in the car and headed home...

All material © 2009-2022 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.