Friday, January 7, 2022

Maggie's Factoria garden

Back in September, after touring Scott's Seattle garden, we jumped in Scott's trusty plant-mobile and headed across the water to see Maggie's garden in Factoria, Maggie is another amazing plantsperson that I've met online, only online—until this day! Oh and are you wondering where exactly is Factoria? East of Seattle, just on the other side of Lake Washington. 

Maggie's garden felt open and airy after Scott's mature cramscaped space, although she's definitely working towards that same feeling of enclosure. Maggie started planting the front garden in October of 2019, and the back garden later that year, in the winter. She also had the advantage of starting with a few specimen sized plants she relocated from her previous garden.

Plants (agaves!) in the cracks...

Aloiampelos striatula, formerly Aloe striatula

If by chance you remember photos of the seed-grown palm (Trachycarpus Fortunei var Nainital) I unexpectedly brought home from my Seattle trip, this is the garden of the person who grew it. It and a lot more just like it! 

You will see many palms in these photos, Maggie has expertly peppered them throughout the garden. As you can see, she's also a cramscaper...

Now we're looking at the planting area on the opposite side of the driveway from the above photos. Anyone with a daphniphyllum has great plant taste in my book, it's the tall large leafed shrub...

I think the strappy, spiky plant in the front is a Nolina, possibly N. nelsonii, I can't remember for sure and I've already asked Maggie so many questions I didn't want to bother her again for ID.

The interesting thing about that photo above—and every other photo from this post—is that no matter where you look there are amazing plants mixed all together. I see a couple of great mahonia, an arctostaphylos, a Stachyurus salicifolius, and on an on. I call out one or two of my favorites in each photo, but could have highlighted so many more.

Now we're looking back to the front garden where we started (the first five photos). Those bags of soil and amendments remind me that Maggie was out there working when we showed up. It was very kind of her to stop and tour us around. Let's go climb those steps!

I snapped this photo of a perfect Agave montana not yet knowing Maggie grew it from seed, and that I'd be leaving with one.


Schefflera taiwaniana 

 Schefflera (Heptapleurum) delavayi, and Musa basjoo

Beschorneria yuccoides 'Flamingo Glow' (I think)

Pseudopanax 'Sabre'

Time to check out the back garden...

This was fun to see, a large Metapanax davidii, often confused with Metapanax delavayi—at least when written, they are different enough in person that you could never confuse them.

Short wide leaves, vs. the long thin leaves of M. delavayi.

Such a deceivingly simple combination, but the Azara microphylla on the far right looks so good with the Mahonia gracilipes. I think I need to plant one of these mahonia back by my azara.

Agaves ahoy!

More of the seed-grown Agave montana, I think the one in the upper right-hand corner is the one that came home with me.

Ficus afghanistanica 'Silver Lyre', I believe. I need to find a place for this one in my garden again (the one I had perished).

Puya harmsii

A giant (rotten at the base) tree was recently removed from right on the property line. Maggie has exciting plans for those stump rounds...

Since a few months had elapsed since my visit I messaged Maggie to be sure I was remembering the name of this plant correctly. My mind said "that plant Dan Hinkley was selling as a trevesia but now it's something else" but the photos I found online didn't seem to fit. 

Nope, I was right—it is that plant—a Brassaiopsis dumicola DJHV 8077: "From the mountains of NE Vietnam, this Araliad with cleverly lobed foliage has proven hardy, vigorous and handsome, for partial shade in evenly moist draining soils. To 15', perhaps"

The inflorescence sort of dangles, unlike that of the aralia I am familiar with which are, well, erect.

Last week saw incredibly cold temperatures in the Puget Sound area, Maggie reports 14F as her low and there were several days (four I believe) where the temperatures didn't get above freezing during the daytime. She is cautiously optimistic this beauty is going to be okay. My fingers are crossed.

Did you spot the other cutie in the photo above? That's Ozzie, he was an absolute doll who had me twisted around his tiny paw in no time. I wanted to take him home.

But wait! What's that! Yep, Maggie has a variegated daphniphyllum too—part of a small group of folks who do.

Looking back towards where we walked into the back garden.

I think the Begonia luxurians is in a container, so it's easy to protect in the cold. The tree fern however... she wrapped it and added lights for heat (fingers crossed again).

I love seeing people's work spaces!

I was seriously so blindsided by that striking banana and Tetrapanax papyrifer combo that I almost missed the pond.

But not the ferns! I swooned over the combination of Blechnum chilense/Parablechnum cordatum and (I think) Blechnum penna-marina/Austroblechnum penna-marina...

...and just like that, we end this fabulous garden tour! Thankfully Maggie and Scott were up for posing for a photo. Looking at it now I am overcome with gratitude for all the wonderful plant people I know and get to interact with. You guys are the best!

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


  1. What a lovely garden!

    So many gorgeous plants with really interesting leaves.

    It looks so full for such a young garden.

    Can you imagine what it will look over the years as it matures? It will be fab :D

  2. Beautiful garden - I love that waterfall.

  3. Beautiful garden! I love the "bones" of it: the large trees all around, the rocks, fountain, the stunning gate... I wonder how the stump rounds will be used. I admire all the propagation that's going on: very cool. Little Ozzie! I immediately thought of Lila...

    1. When we first walked through the back gate Ozzie was still inside, but he was howling and the howls of a pug are very recognizable. Took me right back to Lila's demanding to be outside with her people.

  4. I know you were in seventh heaven! There were many plants I admired but don't have a chance of growing, although I did just put the Beschoneria on one mail order wishlist :)

    1. Will that be your first beschoneria? I bet they love your climate.

  5. Fabulous garden. Like the dog too!

  6. Wowee. I would buy that Ficus in one minute but the chances of finding it seem slim. This garden is fantastic-thanks for the tour.

  7. I like to see a garden that’s very well designed, but immature. I learn better that way, because it’s easier to pick apart. So many thoughtful combos here.
    And I also like the pic with the hoodie hanging on the bannister. This looks like someone’s HOME.
    Great post, Loree.

  8. I was hooked by the rocks in the first photo. How great to have mature trees to plant under. Makes new gardens seem so mature. She has a great ability to combine plants.


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