Friday, July 19, 2013

Winner of the Plant Nerd Night Contest

The randomly generated lucky number was 2, which means Hans (the 2nd person who left a comment) won the ticket to Plant Nerd Night!  Way to go!  You have until Sunday at midnight to e-mail me your mailing address or if you prefer I can hand the ticket to you at Plant Nerd Night.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Plant Nerd Night Ticket Giveaway!!!!

Plant Nerd Night is sold out but all the lucky readers of this blog can win a ticket!!  Yes, I will be giving away one single ticket to Plant Nerd Night valued at $25.00. 

This contest starts at 12 noon on Friday, July 12th and ends at 12 noon on Friday, July 19th.  To enter for a chance to win, simply leave a comment below.  It doesn't matter what the comment is - any comment will do!  After the contest ends, each eligible comment will be numbered in the order it is posted.  I'll select one winner at random by using the random number generator on  The random number that is generated will determine the winning comment.  Only your first comment will count toward the drawing.  Also, replies to other people's comments will not count so be sure to leave an original comment.  If you indicate in your comment that you are not planning to attend (e.g. "I wish I could go but I'm getting married that night!"), then I will exclude that comment from the contest.  I will announce the winner shortly after 12 noon on the 19th on this blog.  If you are the winner, we'll make arrangements via e-mail to have the ticket mailed to you in time for the big day.  Good luck!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

I Should Be Gardening Right Now.

Lilium duchartrei
Blogging in the winter is easy because differing variations of rain, wind, dark and cold make sitting at a computer very appealing.  But it just doesn't feel right in the summer when it's absolutely perfect outside.

Lavatera olbia 'Aurea'
  Suffice it to say there will probably be very few posts between now and the end of August.

Lobelia tupa
Hummingbirds have been visiting this Lobelia tupa every day for the past couple weeks.

Passiflora caerulea
Even though blue passion flowers originate in the South American tropics, they can handle a mild Seattle winter with no problem.  Another plant from South America but not quite hardy enough for us is Brugmansia or Angel's Trumpet. It's still well-worth the effort, rooting very easily from cuttings which can then over-winter indoors.  Below is Brugmansia 'Little Angel' pictured with Lilium 'Stargazer'.  These are the two best smelling flowers in the world.

Brugmansia 'Little Angel' with Lilium 'Stargazer'
The veggie patch
The peas are done for the season but the fava beans are just starting to ripen.  In the above photo, they are on the left towering above the potatoes.  Below, you can see how huge they are compared to a regular-sized fork.  The beans are an inch long.

Big old fava beans
A new flush of growth on the Fatsia polycarpa.  I was a little worried about this plant because I (stupidly) left it in a pot without drainage holes, only to notice it about a week later (a very rainy week) half-filled with water.  Yikes!!  Good to know this little guy is a trooper.  I've since drilled drainage holes in the pot.

Fatsia polycarpa
One of the things on my "Buy this regardless of price" list are plants that have fluorescent-looking flowers and/or foliage.  Kniphofia 'Shining Sceptre' is one of those plants, and there are a few other Kniphofias that have similar super-bright-orange qualities including the ones with 'Mango' in the name.

Kniphofia 'Shining Sceptre' with Butia capitata
Everyone was asking about this plant on Saturday:

Francoa sonchifolia
Francoa sonchifolia
Francoa sonchifolia is a hardy, mounding evergreen perennial (it doesn't look like it's evergreen but it is), and has copious spikes of white & pink flowers.  Also drought-tolerant, as discovered by the fact that when I went to dig some up to give away, the soil happened to be incredibly dry.

Some more great lilies in bloom right now:

Lilium 'Juan de Fuca'
Crinum moorei
 Finally, here are the great new plants I picked up from Far Reaches Farm on Saturday:

Paris polyphylla var. yunnanensis, Schefflera fengii, and Berberis malipoense/hypoxantha

Sunday, July 7, 2013

The 2013 Normandy Park Garden Festival

Our garden festival and plant sale is now over but many great times were had and we're already making plans for next year.  It was a big success with over 200 people stopping by.  The weather was again perfect Seattle summer weather.  Here are a few shots from the event:

Micah & Meghan setting up the plant sale
Hiromi & Mitch getting all the great food ready
Look at all those great plants!
Does life get any better than this?
Kelly Dodson talking about some great plants recently introduced into cultivation
A big thank you to Joyce, Amber, Mitch, Hiromi, Tomohiro, Meghan, Micah, Riz, Debi, Ann & Steve, and my parents donating their time & effort making this such a great event.  Thank you also to Church By the Side of the Road for lending us the sound system, chairs, tables, stage, and bouncy house.  And of course thank you to Kelly Dodson and Far Reaches Farm for being the best nursery in the world!

If you would like to be mailing list for next year's event, contact me me and I'll get you on there!