Friday, May 5, 2023

Greenhouse magic at Raintree Tropical

I finally managed a visit to Raintree Tropical in Silverton, Oregon. It's an hour long drive from home, with no traffic, so not somewhere I've ever managed to just end up at unplanned—even though I've wanted to visit for a while now. 

Getting out of the car the first thing I saw was this raised pond. I guess raccoons aren't a problem in this area.

I couldn't help but ogle the palm trees, this was just a small part of what I could see from the parking area.

Peeking into the greenhouse next to the palms...

Time to step inside...

Oh ya, this is going to be fun! Lots of little treasures to admire.

There was a pot underneath those Phlebodium aureum fronds. But when I bent down to look at it...

I also discovered broken rhizomes just growing away in the wet moss and debris under the tables.

The fronds from those rhizomes. I love this! It reminded me a bit of the greenhouse magic I experienced at Dicks back in 2019, post here.

Finding frogs as you wander is always a good sign.

Remember those palms at the top of the post? Here's the view looking out towards them.

I imagine you've already figured it out, but this is not the kind of nursery visit where everything is lined up in tidy pots with labels and prices.

Magic happens in there...

Callisia fragrans

Oh! Check out that pyrrosia!

And that one...

And those epiphyllum blooms...

Stepping into another greenhouse-like space now, this one with open sides. That mangave and cordyline look fantastic together...

Leucadendron 'Ebony'

Okay this one threw me. What is it!? I had to ask. 

Steve (the helpful fellow manning the fort) paused for a moment. He decided it was "just" a sword fern. Okay, I see that, but it's kind of odd too, I mean those fronds are so tall and shooting straight up. And the rachis (the center stem, I think that's the right word?) is so dark! He threw out a price that I couldn't refuse, even if it ends up growing like a common sword fern in my garden I won't be upset.

Pteris quadriaurita 'Tricolor' (Zone 10)

A quick step outdoors to admire more palms.

And another concrete block pond.

There were several cycads, something you don't see a lot of up in Portland. This one is perhaps not the happiest, but it's still quite striking.

This one looks great!

Love the blue encephalartos.

Encephalartos trispinosus

Encephalartos arenarius

Fun times! This was my first visit, but it definitely won't be my last. In addition to the mystery fern, I also came home with a pair of pyrrosia... (can't stop/won't stop).

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  1. A greenhouse AND ponds - who can pass that up?! The tiny frog was a wonderful capture too. I'm glad to see that you haven't run out of sources of Pyrrosia too.

    1. I really wanted one of the pots of pyrrosia I pictured in the post, but it was significantly more $ than the ones I bought!

  2. I've been wanting to visit this place, too. Thanks for the preview! That fern looks like Nephrolepis cordifolia.

  3. Replies
    1. I think Evan (above) called it, a mystery no more!

  4. AnonymousMay 05, 2023

    After the pyrrosia damage of last winter it is understandable that you can't stop/won't stop buying replacements. The pair you found is just the ticket for feeling better.

    1. Part of me wonders if I'm not just buying to have the damage happen all over again, so thank you for the encouragement.

  5. AnonymousMay 05, 2023

    Yeah, that's not a typical sword fern. The leaf shape and the way it attached is wrong. Plus, the color is, I think, paler and a little different shade of green. Love how vertical it is and those dark stems. I wouldn't have left it behind either!

    1. I'm thinking that's Struthiopteris spicant (FKA Blechnum spicant)

    2. I was chalking the color up to a need for some nutrients. Interesting that you mention Blechnum spicant as that was something else Steve (mgr) mentioned, but then he settled on sword fern. I think Evan (above) properly called it as Nephrolepis cordifolia, which does have the common name of sword fern, but just not as we think of it.

  6. AnonymousMay 05, 2023

    Wowee!! Super cool! Never heard of this place and need to make a trip! Texture city! Just have to drag myself away from my own garden right now. Today discovered my clianthus puniceus (kaka beak) has a bud! It barely survived winter in a pot. Even the single bloom is visual victory vs. last winter’s cold blasts. And love the texture of the leaves. So much from what you show above is up my alley.
    Jim N. Tabor

    1. Oh! Congrats on the Clianthus puniceus bud! Years ago I managed to get that one big enough in the ground to bloom, the following year did it in.

  7. We enjoyed staying at the old farmhouse on the property:

  8. The tillandsias in the six photo are incredible. I wish my Spanish moss looked like that. You know when you see frogs the owners are following good growing practices. I can see you 'popping in' a little more regularly now.

  9. Susan TrabuccoMay 08, 2023

    I’m so glad you got a chance to visit Raintree Tropical. It is indeed, a magical place, I’ve been going there for about five years. My garden is full of their offerings. A reminder to all, the nursery is currently open only on Fridays and Saturdays well, they deal with some staffing challenges. not just anyone can work there, it has to be someone who knows a heck of a lot about tropical plants!


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