-

-
Although this could very well be a picture of me finding a new treasure at a favorite nursery, it's actually an illustration by David Catrow for a children's book called Plantzilla.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Far Reaches Farm "Soft Opening"

When an email arrived in my inbox announcing that Far Reaches Farm in Port Townsend was inviting everyone to their soft opening with "limited offerings", a couple of weekends ago, I jumped at the chance to see what was happening in their spring garden.  There were also many treasures out on the sales tables. "Limited offerings" must have meant limited to the most fabulous and and hard to find plants.  As always, this place was definitely worth the drive, maybe even a flight... Here's a random sampling of some of my favorites.  See my previous posts about FRF here.   If you do a web search for blog post Far Reaches Farm, you'll find that garden bloggers love this magical place and have posted frequently about it.

The foliage of Paeonias tenuifolia and veitchii are spectacular. 

 Paeonia mairei is a welcome early bloomer!


Peonies look great from the time they emerge from the soil!  Foliage, buds, flowers, seedpods are all terrific!

Meconopsis 'Lingholm'  looking very fat and happy.  Doesn't everyone grow blue poppies? They're so easy here.


Ajuga incisa 'Bikum' combines yellow variegated foliage with blue flowers.  Heavenly!

 Speaking of blue and gold, Clematis 'Stolwilk gold' has gorgeous gold foliage with these blue flowers.  Mine has yet to flower but the foliage alone has been exciting enough to allow it to stay for the last few years.

 Glaucidium palmatum was named by the Royal Horticultural Society as one of the top 200 plants of the last 200 years!  We are very lucky to be able to grow this woodland gem here! 

From the Far Reaches Website:  "This Japanese woodlander is among the very elite of all plants for shade. Slow to propagate and uncommonly beautiful, a well-grown mature plant is a prized trophy which marks you as a gardener of exquisite taste.  This plant is not often available.    Broad maple-like leaves are the foil for the large 3" light lavender crepe paper Poppy-esque flowers. Cool shade and a woodsy soil that doesn't dry out is ideal for this piece of living botanical art.

 Pyrrosia sheareri


Podophyllums emerging from their winter dormancy.

No words -  Podophyllum delavayi still takes my breath away with its beauty.



Do be mindful of  the resident spider!


Lysichiton americanus, our native skunk cabbage, in bloom.

Lysichiton camschatscensis, it's white Asian counterpart.

Spring is a special time in any garden but here, it's truly amazing.  Far Reaches is pretty much crack for plant addicts.

Where are the shovels?  Isn't this a dig your own sort of nursery? The deeply incised leaves of this Schefflera delavayi have me breaking the tenth commandment and contemplating relaxing number eight a bit, too.  Seriously, though, isn't this cool?


Schefflera gracilis

Grevillea australis.  See the description in the photo below.  Who needs T.V. with entertainment like this at one's fingertips?


Familiar cardiocrinum foliage but look at that purple veining... What up with that?  Read the tag below to see.

 Pretty cool to know that this is currently the only place on the planet to obtain this plant and it's within driving distance of my house. 

Love trilliums with mottled leaves.  I only wish that the foliage lasted a little longer.  Oh well, they don't mind having hostas at their feet to fill in the blank spots when they go dormant for the summer.

On the counter by the cash register is always some drool worthy and usually unavailable plant in full bloom or sporting outrageous foliage.  This is clearly there to draw your attention away from the whir of the cash register as your bill is being tallied.  It also refuels  plant lust and  gives you another  reason to return to the nursery many times through the season.  This weekend's siren was Pleione 'Vesuvius Phoenix.'  "Do you really NEED to pay the mortgage this month?' she sings seductively.  "I think you forgot to check out every single table in the shade house.  Maybe you should stay a little longer.  Have you seen how beautiful and unusual everything is here?"  Her dulcet tones - the beautiful surroundings, so tempting to stay...  It's all I can do to grab my plants and run for the car. 
She's in a four inch pot so when you visit Far Reaches be sure to wear a coat with appropriately-sized pockets.  Also, bring your own shovel!  

NOTE: This is  a joke.  I am not actually suggesting that you steal plants from this or any other nursery!  

33 comments:

  1. I bought one of those pink Cardiocrinums at Hortlandia! Remember how you asked me in the car what was the first plant I would get in the ground when we got home? Well, I lied. It was my Cardiocrinum. I've decided I'm going to buy one Cardiocrinum every year for the next ten years. I suppose I could just buy ten right now, but that would be very, very expensive. I need some more blue poppies too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just wait until your Cardiocrinums bloom and make lots of bublets/offsets for you to plant around! Soon you'll have a forest of them. I'm thinking that I could use a blue poppy or two as well. Maybe we should plan a trip up to Far Reaches again one of these days.

      Delete
  2. Oh that Schefflera delavayi! Dan Heims was here yesterday and he pointed at mine (without the deeply incised leaves) and said "you realize that's going to get way too big for that spot, right?" Oh silly Dan, that's the way I garden!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Isn't that Schefflera cool? Heavy Sigh. I'll bet that someday, they'll be much more common round these parts. Silly Mr. Heims indeed. I wish I had the discipline of David from It's a Dry Heat but it's so much fun to cram all those beautiful plants in now!

      Delete
  3. Oh to have space for Cardiocrinums...you'll die when we go to Bruce Wakefield's garden during the Fling...the last time I was there, there were dozens blooming...the entire wooded garden smelled like heaven. Rare or not, I love the Glaucidium palmatum!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I remember first seeing a grove of blooming Cardiocrinums at Heronswood and thinking that I'd died and gone to heaven. Looking forward to seeing Bruce Wakefields garden and all of the other Portland gardens on the tour! Glaucidium palmatum is some kind of wonderful!

      Delete
  4. So many fabulous plants, what a place. I love those Trilliums with their fab new red leaf growth.
    Happy Easter.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Are they flowers on the Trilliums? I have never seen them before. I love Glaucidium Palmatum and Podophyllum Delavayi. The spider looks deadly.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those are flowers on the Trilliums. I have a soft spot for all Podophyllums! The spider, being a metal sculpture, wasn't biting anyone during my visit.

      Delete
    2. I bauzed up twice there didn't I, it looks very life like. Note to self-get eyes checked out.

      Delete
  6. Replies
    1. I couldn't agree more. So many treasures!

      Delete
  7. I feel super-priveledged to be close to great nurseries...then I read about yours. I have to bushwhack to the bottom of our woods to see the skunk cabbage. Thanks for reminding me that it's time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think we're both pretty lucky! It's fascinating that every nursery has a niche or specialty that makes it unique. We in the Pacific Northwest can be rightfully proud of our fine nursery industry and well-know plantspeople! California is pretty awesome too, maybe we should annex them.

      Delete
  8. Wow! I can see why your were ecstatic!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Great photos! Looks like they have quite an offering of plants. Don't all gardeners carry shovels in the cars? Actually, I always have a trowel and pruners with me at all times. gotta love spring!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When I lived in a less populated area, I always had a shovel in my car but living in a more urban area and with it being illegal to take plants from certain reserve areas, I leave the shovel in the garage now.

      Delete
  10. Every single one of the plants you show in this post is incredible. Only the fact that few, if any, could survive in my garden prevents me from getting on a plane...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sometimes, I'd trade climates with you in an instant but most years, April through November make me love this region! To be able to grow some of your plants in the ground would be quite a treat!

      Delete
  11. That cardiocrinum tag makes me giggle so much. I think Alison has a great plan. I bought a small bulb but it probably won't bloom for four years.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Once they bloom, they create lots of offsets that you can plant around and start the fun again but it's a great idea to get a new one or two each year until then so you'll always have some in bloom.

      Delete
  12. You guys are so lucky to have so many great places near you!

    ReplyDelete
  13. I LOVE that whoever produces those plant description tags has a sense of humour, how fun! I did a double take when I saw that spider. And I love the name skunk cabbage

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kelly at Far Reaches is responsible for the humorous plant tags. He and Sue are equally fun in person!

      Delete
  14. Oh, Wow! is all I can think of to say! What an amazing place! I agree with the cashier - skipping a month's mortgage doesn't seem like such a bad idea when faced with all these beauties! And the tag on the Grevillia is fabulous! Love that they love plants so much it even shows on the tags!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amazing people, fabulous plants, a special treat to be able to visit! Most addicts understand that it is perfectly understandable to forgo the mortgage payment to procure a special plant or two. After all, man does not live by bread alone!

      Delete
  15. If I could get a Peony to look that good in my garden I might even plant a few :). Loved my visit to Far Reaches a couple of years ago. Unfortunately since you always want what you can't have, most of the plants that caught my eye were not hardy in my zone. Although I think my friend bought one of those Ajugas...hmmm. Happy spring!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Happy spring, Sue! I know what you mean about always wanting what you can't have. We can grow so much here yet, on our nursery/garden visits during the California fling, I was drawn to many plants that aren't hardy here except as houseplants.

      Delete
  16. This is the year I intend to add blue poppies and cardiocrinum to the garden. (And hardy grevilleas and scheffleras and maybe peonies and podophyllums!) Ok, maybe not all those this year, since I have such a long wishlist already, and a lot of work to do in the yard before I can plant a lot of those things anyway, but I'm going to do the best I can!

    I wish I lived closer to Far Reaches and The Desert Northwest and all those other great nurseries and gardens in the Puget Sound area. At least they don't seem so far away now after driving across the country!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's a tall order for one year! Lots of work but how much fun you'll have!

      I know that you live in Western Washington but whereabouts? Fun to hear that your mom is a teacher as that is also my profession!

      Delete

Thanks so much for taking the time to comment! I love to hear your thoughts.