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.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Treasure at Far Reaches Farm

After Saturday's visit to Heronswood and Dragonfly Farms,  Carmen,(Elantra)the plant mobile, took us to Far Reaches Farm because we always visit when we're out that way but also because a special treasure, purchased online, was waiting to be picked up.  Not wanting to seem too eager, I scoped out the spectacular shade garden emerging from a long winter's nap.

Looks like Crambe emerging (maritima, I think but could be cordifolia)

Symplocarpus foetidus

With foliage like this, who needs flowers?

Hiding away in the private area were these shady characters.  

Fern fronds hosting Erythronium.

Looks like a brazen hussy (Ranunculus ficaria 'Brazen Hussy') cavorting with Pyrosia lingua.
Cardiocrinum giganteum var. yunnanense "Cardicorinum is exciting enough but variety yunnanense with its burnished copper new growth causes pulses to elevate along with dilated pupils and flaring nostrils.  When this is blooming it is almost as good as sex.  It takes a few years but purple flushed white flowers on 12' stalks- oh yes!"

Polygonatum mengtzense f. tonkinense came home with me.  Thank goodness I had a shovel in the plant mobile,  uhm, I mean, it was nice to find some for sale, yeah, that's it some for sale. 

Remember this one?  It wasn't leafed out yet this spring.  Let's hope that propagation is successful. (or that I dug in the right spot.)

Seriously, it's poor form, not to mention wrong, to take plants from someone else's garden.  In addition, this guy is always watching and will come after you if you do! (Don't ask me how I know.)


Podophyllum delavayi makes my heart sing. 

Podophyllum 'Red Panda.'   They say we only regret the plants we didn't buy.  I passed up the chance to get this one a year or two ago and have been kicking myself ever since.  Fortunately, Far Reaches has some babies that they're fattening up to offer later.  

Paeonia tenuifolia looks so soft and cuddly.

OMG,  Berberis jamesiana  is a showstopper with bare branches and dripping clusters of last year's cried fruit.

Can you imagine seeing this all winter?  I grabbed one from a sales table and we had a lovely conversation during which it reminded me that there's already one at my place in the pot ghetto.

It was love at first sight last summer and obviously, the plant just gets better through the year!

Can you imagine what a non plant addict would think looking at these tables?  Me either.  How can you explain a sunset to someone who 's never seen one?

Rhodiola integrifolia looks incredibly cute emerging from the ground!

Greenovia diplocycla.

 Heloniopsis orientalis.

Look at the variety of leaf patterns and shapes on these Podophyllum delavayi hybrids.  Resist, resist, resist!  Really, how many of these does one gardener really need?

One of the shade houses.

Out in the garden

Back inside, Schefflera digitata 

Trillium (kurabayashii?)

Euphorbia mellifera almost came home with me.  I'd read about the fragrance but never experienced it myself. Delightfully, it really does smell like honey.

Arisaema looks spectacular in a pot where one can appreciate the emerging foliage & blooms up close.

Were you wondering what treasure was waiting? Podophyllum difforme - Starfish Form.  This makes me a little weak in the knees!

Hope you enjoyed the first visit to Far Reaches this season as much as I did!


  1. My P. Spotty Dotty appears to have made it through its first winter. I am so excited. I ordered that Trillium and another Podophyllum from Far Reaches. Lucky you to be able to visit in person. I will be watching to see how your new baby grows!

  2. What fun! It's always a magical place to visit no matter what time of year it is. I'm amazed there is a Euphorbia that smells good, they all smell like skunk to me. I'm going to Pin that shot of the Arum with the feathery foliage. I don't recognize it, but I've been thinking of spreading my Arum around more, and I've bought Cyclamen coum, C. hederifolium, and Hellebores to go with it, but something feathery would be a nice contrast to all that mottled foliage. Got any suggestions? Corydalis maybe?

    1. Far Reaches is a magical place to visit! Corydalis would be nice, one of the fern-leafed dicentras, ferns, nice crop o' carrots?

  3. Wonderful place. I feel sad for non-gardeners--they are missing so much beauty.

  4. That starfish is a winner! *Sigh* - so many pretty plants that won't grow in SoCal.

  5. Lots of cool stuff, for sure. It's so much fun watching things emerge this time of the year.

  6. Ah man...I really need to get back there someday. Hmm...but they are coming to me next weekend. Uh, guess I'd better be shopping their website for requests, asap!

  7. Wow, what a nursery, so much to drool over. Now tell me what is the secret to keeping Podophyllum happy? I tried Spotty Dotty but killed it almost immediately.

    1. Podophyllum are a weird and fickle bunch. Best transplanting seems to happen when it's cool and wet but I've had success at other times of the year by digging a three foot deep hole, filling it with compost, soaking that and then adding the plant with some native soil. Once they're established, they tend to stay but getting them established can be hit or miss. I now grow many in pots that stay outside year round. Some will go dormant in the heat of summer if not provided sufficient water. They get some organic fertilizer when I remember and those in pots sometimes get Osmocote (a time-released fertilizer)


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