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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.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Welcome to Work part two Jungle Fever Exotics Nursery.


Jungle Fever is  one of my favorite nurseries, small but always has interesting plants!  Every great once in a while, I get to keep the shop open when Jerry, the owner needs a day off.  Hooray, I get to play in a nursery full of plants!  (Previous visits here.)

I like to go directly to the inside area to see if the Ceiba speciosa made it through another winter.  This is an amazing tree, do a web search and you'll find some amazing images.  Luckily, the tree made it through and is leafing out!
 Aloe and barrel cactus with a crown. 
 Agave lophantha 'Quadricolor' with a pup.  Mine is doing the same thing.  How cute is that? 


Darlene, Jerry's wife, died last Decemer.  I've featured some of her large mosaics in previous posts but she loved making small pieces.  It was comforting to still see these traces of her here and there around the nursery.





I'm totally in lust with this bamboo, whose name I've forgotten.  It may not look all that special now

But look at what it becomes. The green striping on the culms is very consistently alternating. I'd love to replace my timber bamboo grove with this beauty.

Jerry has lots of bamboos like another favorite of mine, Phyllostachys vivas aureocaulis.

Geranium 'Persian Queen' has brilliant flowers that are doubly wonderful emerging from golden and chartreuse foliage.

 New to me.  Interesting. 

  Puya coerulea var. coerulea
 Echium pininata, one of which came home with me. 

This Schefflera delavayi has some incised leaves, some smooth ones.  


Every garden should have at least one Stachys hidalgo.  The leaves smell wonderful, even stronger when brushed or bruised.  Some think it smells like 7Up.  It also has nice apricot blooms most of the summer as well. Not a horribly long lived perennial, it was time for a new one in my garden.

Solanum purpurea is delightfully dangerous and fairly fast growing in the ground.  Not fun to weed around. 


Lots of interesting fuchsias.  F. 'Golden Gypsy has great foliage color and beautiful blooms. 

Speaking of beautiful blooms, F. 'Blackie' is pretty gorgeous!

Cerinthe major purpurascens has dreamy foliage and nice flowers. It's an annual but reseeds politely so you usually need to only buy it once.

Hellebore 'Snow Fever' looked especially pretty to me.

I remember when Jungle Fever was one of the few places where you could get gunnera.  Now just about every nursery carries this groovy plant.

This Kalopanax must be about 16 years old now. 

Bear grass was tempting  but it stayed at the nursery. 

New growth on the Callistemons.

Freemontodendron is a bright and cheerful bloomer!

There are always palms in this jungle!


Citrumelo and Yuzu, two citrus trees that are hardy here.  I went with the Yuzu, having room for only one. 
 Aponogeton distachyus blooms are gorgeous!

Potato vine in bloom.
 Lewisia, a wonderful native plant.
 Even the weeds here are lovely to look at!

Hooray, my Mitraria coccinea made it through the winter!

Heucherella 'Sweet Tea' almost makes me love it. 


This would look great in your shade garden!

Since I was there and there wasn't a lot to do, I peeked back into the private area and saw this very unusual Agave parryi truncata variegata (guessing as there was no tag.)

I still haven't caught Jerry to ask him if he would consider selling  this beauty.

Trying to remain calm.  

I love spending time here as a customer or worker.  

29 comments:

  1. I can hear you on occasion convincing Jerry to take a few hours off just for fun. Ceiba is a cool plant to visit at the nursery but it does get tall. You have some fun part time jobs.



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    1. Oh, Jerry seldom takes any time off except during the winter when he has shorter hours and closes during the coldest few weeks.

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  2. Your workplaces are so interesting.

    What caught my eye at this one was the Baccharis species. Not because it is particularly interesting but that we have native Baccharis halimifolia on the East and Gulf Coasts. It is a small tree that is suitable for coastal plantings. At my place, it is a trash tree that comes up here and there along fields and woods and everybody wants to know what it is when it blooms in late summer.

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    1. One man's trash... How funny that this is so familiar to you!

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  3. He certainly does have some plants that are off the beaten track. The Mitraria coccinea and the Puya caerulea are both calling to me. I should stop in soon.

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    1. Mitraria is a beautiful plant and the bright orange flowers in the dappled shade are pretty eye catching. I think that there's only one of each of those plants left!

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  4. Ceiba speciosa is a most unusual tree. I have just returned from a trip to the middle east where it grows happily in parks and parking strips: the thorny trunks thankfully "shaved" by the city arborist.
    I grow Cerinthe major (Honey wart is so much easier to say) and I love how you described it as "reseeds politely". It's true: absolutely beautiful and easy to manage.
    Peter, you seem to have too much fun being the client and the employee at the same time...

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    1. Little more than shopping and selling plants to people gets done when I'm there. It's easy to sell something that one is passionate about!

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  5. Oh wow. I must stop by jungle fever one day! All those great agave, and the palms! That butia is a beauty!

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    1. Jerry always has some interesting plants!

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  6. I wondered if you would share that amazing agave, it is just fabulous. Will there be pictures of Jerry's home garden next? Pretty please...

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    1. I was going to take pictures of Jerry's home garden but we were having a torrential downpour at closing time so I locked up, loaded my plants and left. I'll go back and see what's happening if the rain ever lets up again.

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  7. I love seeing pictures of this nursery. So many cool plants! I had Fuchsia 'Blackie' but it died this last winter in my parent's unheated and uninsulated garage. Sometimes I get so tired of trying when they just let things die. But for my own future garden I'll take a few Mitraria, Gunnera, that striped bamboo, Fremontodendron, Schefflera, Callistemon, and Puya. Just a few things, you know?

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    1. You show amazing restraint! Oh well, you'll have the garden of your dreams someday!

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  8. Lots of interesting plants. I'm not surprised to see that Loree likes the Agave - it's pretty wonderful. I liked that Solanum - I wonder how the raccoons in my garden would feel about it?

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    1. I'll bet that racoons wouldn't like that Solanum at all. I'll bet that they'd grow very well from seed in your climate as well. Caution - I had one make it through a mild winter and in it's second year it became a four foot tall monster. Heaven only knows what it would do in your climate.

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  9. Politely reseeding Cerinthe? Mine must have been a truant from charm school. If only nursery owners knew how many of us would be willing to shop-sit for the sheer pleasure of it.

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    1. It's really a sweet way to spend a day, talking to plant people, evangelizing those folks who come in looking for petunias...Wouldn't this look great in your garden? Truant from charm school - you always make me laugh Ricki!

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  10. That Agave parryi variegated, wow! They do have so many wonderful plants, no wonder you feel excitement whenever you work there :)

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  11. Great post! I wouldn't mind a few hours there myself. However I'd sure want to keep my distance from that bad-ass thorny thing in your first photo. :) I had that Farfugium--the round leaves with yellow speckles. But it didn't survive the winter. Major bummer. What a fun place. Pays to know the right people.

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    1. The bad-ass thorny thing isn't so bad. You don't want to fall on it though!

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  12. We drove by there last weekend on our way to a plant sale at Point Defiance, and I thought of you.

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    1. I almost went to that sale at the park but I had to work. We're like ships that pass in the night.

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  13. So many plants to lust after here: the beargrass and the Fremontodendron especially. Is that Ceiba speciosa in the ground??? I've loved it every time I've seen it, but that's only in southern climes.

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    1. It's hard not to pack half of the nursery in my car! The Ceiba speciosa is in a somewhat heated indoor area. Kept above 40 degrees in the winter.

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  14. Wow! what an incredible nursery. I love the floor in the second picture.

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    1. I love Jungle Fever! Jerry, the owner, made the floor when he added that part of the building. It's pretty cool!

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  15. This Agave parryi truncata variegata is really gorgeous

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