It was a year ago today that I first hit the orange publish button on blogger and began my journey as a blogger. I'd read a lot of blogs and even commented on some but didn't think I'd have much to say that would be of interest to other folks on a blog of my own. At the urging of Ms. Danger, I started anyway. A year and 276 posts later, I still don't know if I'll run out of things to post about but for the time being, I'm having fun. Perhaps in the future I won't post five days a week as I have this year. The most interesting thing about blogging has been meeting other gardeners and feeling like a part of a community of like minded (and perhaps misguided) souls who love to get their hands dirty. In reading blogs from around the country and world, I've gained a broader understanding of and appreciation for the differences in regional garden styles, plant palettes, and practices. In reading blogs from my own region, I've learned about exciting new plants to try in my garden. Thank you all for reading my blog, leaving comments, welcoming me to the blogosphere and helping me to gain more knowledge of plants and gardening!
I was thinking of doing a drawing for this post but will do that for my 300th post. Instead, today I'll post about a visit to Jungle Fever, a nursery and plantsman (Jerry Cearley) who have been instrumental in my green education and formation as a gardener and plant fanatic over the last 20 or so years.
Jungle Fever is a small nursery specializing in hardy exotics. Originally I was drawn here by the huge fragrant flowers of brugmansias but came to love the many tropical appearing large leaved plants that are surprisingly hardy here. Jungle Fever has always carried a lot of beautiful Australian natives and desert plants from our own continent like cacti and agaves. It wasn't until recently that I started appreciating those and later than that that I began to like palms, another Jungle Fever staple. A visit to this nursery, 15 minutes from my house, is like stepping into a mini tour of jungles and deserts of the world. Once inside, it's difficult to remember that we're just yards from a busy street! When the big Restio craze hit, Jungle fever was there to supply our plant lust and on this visit, I noticed some great Rhodocoma capensis! Carnivorous and other bog/water plants play on the sales tables along with a fairly specialized offering of great annuals that you won't find at a box store.
Just outside the entrance was this grevillea in gorgeous bloom. Cisco Morris learned about this group of plants and their hardiness in our region from Jerry.
Jungle fever also has some funky garden art!
I'll shut up now and let you look around a little.
Agave alba mediopicta
Agave lophantha 'Quadricolor'
Some of the tables of small perennials and unusual annuals.
And a familiar cordyline admirer
Giant papyrus which came home with me.
Clematis 'Early Sensation'
There's something here for everyone! O.K. every gardener.
There's even a nice inside space with a collection of less than hardy beauties.
This keeps following me around! I'll probably succumb eventually.
Roses and palms, what a nice combination!
Jerry's garden is just behind the nursery and a stroll up the sidewalk should not be missed.
The house sits on a corner lot. On one side there are large plants that provide shade and on the other side is a dry sunny garden that looks more like something from southern California than it does a garden in the Pacific Northwest.
Beautiful 30-year-old Agave parryi
Details make all the difference!
We'll stop here to admire the remains of last year's agave bloom stalk about which you can read here.
Also no longer with us this year is Jerry's partner Darlene Allard who died suddenly just before Christmas. It was she who created all of the exquisite mosaic, fused glass, and beaded work around the nursery. Her sense of humor and talent will be sorely missed.