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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.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Visiting PowellsWood Garden

Speaking of garden visiting, I was lucky enough to enjoy the company of California garden blogger and photographer  Gerhard Bock a few weeks ago.  He recently published a very nice post about my garden here.  If you missed it on his blog and would like to see my garden through someone else's lens, click on over and check it out!  Thank you Gerhard for making my garden look so good and for the more than kind words!

A couple of weeks ago, Alison and I went on the Federal Way Symphony garden tour and Alison suggested that we visit Powellswood while we were in the area.  She'd visited before (see her post here.)  She always has the best ideas!

"A Northwest pleasure garden tucked away in a Federal Way neighborhood, the three acres of PowellsWood are nestled against another thirty-five acres of native successional forest."

Can you believe that this gorgeous lawn is the parking lot?

Descending into the garden.



"A series of exquisite hedges help define several distinct garden rooms graced with more than a thousand varieties of trees, shrubs and perennials. The woodland and shade gardens in particular demonstrate how private landowners can use natural land features to develop stunning landscapes. The garden’s perennial borders thrive, the fruit of an extensive soil conservation project."

Entry Garden.


"When Monte and Diane Powell bought this property in 1993, it had been used for years as a dumping ground.  The land was filled with piles of asphalt, concrete, old cars, used tires and other rubbish. Consequently, the soil was so sterile there were areas in which even weeds would not grow.
The first two years following the purchase of the land were spent rebuilding the soil so it would once more support healthy plant life."


Moving into the House Gardens.

Alison and I had arrived about an hour or so before a wedding and reception were to take place so this part of the garden looked a bit different than it would normally.



What a great party venue!



I think this is the "Spring Garden" but it's looking fabulous in the summer!





 Mr. Powell purchased this property in 1993 and mulch testing and soil improvement began. A land developer for years, Mr. Powell wanted to give back to the community and started this garden in his fifties.  He's still active and interested in the garden.





A curving staircase leads us by the rhododendron garden as we descent to the perennial border area.

The gorgeous perennial border area is on a much lower level and is breathtaking as it reveals itself after walking down through the rhododendron garden.



Notice that meticulously clipped hedge. 

at the end of the expansive lawn the beds nearly come together leaving a grass path to explore more shade garden beyond.



Huge and happy patch of rodgersia in the shade garden!


Water loving fuchsia and hydrangea near the pond area.  
 The shade garden, as the path meanders along, becomes more and more wild naturalistic.

I think these are the Cold Creek Shade garden beds, the last to be planted in 2007 - 2008.

The shade garden ends in a huge circle of sword fern and (not shown) a large raised platform beneath the cathedral of old trees where the wedding was to take place.

The path becomes a walking trail through the woods but we didn't take advantage of that but instead walked up on the other side of the woodland garden.

You can see the roof of the house where the reception was set up.

Now we're back up to the entry area on our way back to the parking lot.  

What a beautiful garden which, because of the multiple levels and inclusion of so many rooms, seems much larger than three acres!

"Walking paths, a meandering stream and pond blend gently into the forest and ravines of Redondo’s historic upper Cold Creek watershed. A conservatory-style Garden Room offers shelter when the elements threaten. Restore your soul in this peaceful, verdant retreat."

31 comments:

  1. I love the way the borders are punctuated with exotic plants!

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  2. It's probably my favorite local public garden, so exquisite and meticulously maintained.

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    1. I'm so glad you suggested we visit as it is really beautiful. Can't believe it's been so close all this time and I'd never visited. I want to go back again in various seasons and better light to see more!

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  3. This one and the previous one have brought me much relaxation and pleasure! I'm rather jealous of your forays and determined to find more local gardens to visit! I also want to find me some Rodgersia to see how it would fare in a few of my spaces.

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    1. Rodgersia is a great plant and I'll bet it'll be very happy in your garden. It is nice to have so many beautiful places to visit that are only a short drive away!

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  4. Thank you for your kind words, Peter! Your garden holds a lot more mystery and interest than Powellswood, I think!

    Having said that, I would have enjoyed walking through Powellswood, too. Everything seems to be a on grand scale there. And the garden is so pristine! They must have quite a staff of gardeners.

    We drove through Federal Way on our recent PNW trip, so at least I have a better idea of where these towns are located.

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    1. You're more than welcome, Gerhard! My garden certainly holds a lot more weeds and chaos than PowellsWood! It's a beautiful and very well maintained space.

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  5. Wow, what a beautifully maintained garden. That patch of Rodgersia is to die-for, oh the water bill...

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    1. And so green in all this heat. You're right, oh the water bill! Maybe they have a well?

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  6. I started off by reading Gerhard's post of his visit to your garden and, to quote Alan, "THIS is the view of Peter's garden that I've been waiting for!"; I really enjoyed it. Your bamboo grove is out of this world.
    Back to your post of this amazing venue: I love the descending steps into the garden (so elegant) and the shady planting under the fruit tree canopy.
    When will my Rogersia look so happy? That is how I view it my headI

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    1. Thanks, Chava, the bamboo grove is a fun space.

      This must be several Rogersias together. Isn't it glorious?

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  7. There were many spots in that dappled shade where I could happily camp out for a while. A lovely garden indeed, which I would love to visit some time. Thanks for the preview!

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    1. It's a very special place that's well worth a visit!

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  8. Fantastic -- so beautiful and varied! I was thinking exactly what you concluded with: it does seem so much larger than three acres! Glad you shared this visit!

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    1. Such a beautiful garden! You'll have to come visit it yourself next time you're out this way!

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  9. Incredible! Tasteful and cheerful! Thank you Peter!

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    1. And so close. I'd no idea what a gem it was.

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  10. I am back from Gerhard's blog. Peter, I had a feeling that your garden is something special, but what I saw exceeded all my expectations. You do have a Secret Garden! I hope to see it one day.

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    1. Thanks for the kind words. Gerhard did a good job of avoiding all of the weeds and blank spaces! You are more than welcome to visit my garden!

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  11. What a marvelous visit! I like where the two long beds come together in a corner just leaving a path to further explore another area.

    The visit by Gerhard was an eye opener. He saw things in a new light, literally.

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    1. PowellsWood has many of these closings that open into large garden rooms. They've done an incredible job.

      Gerhard made my garden look better than it really does.

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  12. It's a glorious garden. Those lilies in the perennial borders alone make the visit worthwhile.

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    1. Beautiful lilies were everywhere! Another place for you to visit when you stay in your tiny house on Vashon Island!

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  13. Wow, wow and wow. Such a wonderful garden with so many glorious spaces. The transition between all of the varied areas looks very masterfully done (and of course the planting is impeccable). I think this I would be in seventh heaven if I owned such a space :-)

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    1. It's a wonderful place to be sure and would be wonderful to own as long as there was a staff to help!

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  14. Impressive indeed! I'll bet you were as entertained as we were to see Gerhard's take on your own garden. It's every bit as impressive in its own way.

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    1. Very sweet of you to say! I was surprised and entertained that Gerhard liked my garden so much. I just see all the faults and projects that need doing.

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  15. Wow, it's stunning garden, Peter. Thank you for sharing! I liked a dry creek with flat stones and the perennials garden, very colorful.

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    1. I'm glad you enjoyed this lovely garden, Nadezda!

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  16. I would love to tour this garden someday. Gorgeous!

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