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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.

Friday, August 3, 2018

At Long Last - Lael's Moon Garden Nursery

I've admired and purchased Bethany and Larry Lael's marvelous plants at garden shows and plant sales for many years and always meant to visit their nursery.  Finally, when touring gardens in Olympia, we stopped in nearby Rochester  to  visit the nursery.

The large size of the display garden was unexpected.  The garden was begun over forty years ago on an open, piece of land.

Yuccas 'Color Guard' and rostrata out front are a good sign. 

 Can you believe that this was once open land? 

This plant, Quercus dentata pinnatifida always makes me smile remembering the first time I saw one for sale at Heronswood Nursery.  It's still not very common in nurseries but it's foliage is wonderful and it's hardy to zone 5 and matures at 10 - 15 feet. You should grow this!

Moving along the garden path. 


The long-forgotten eleventh commandment.  



Looking out at the farm across the road. 



 The  Lael's live in the middle of this wondrous space.



Good advice!






The newer part of the garden has a tropical feel. 

Ficus afghanistanica

Tree fern.




It's hard to tell from the image but this Gunnera is huge, the largest I've ever seen.  At least 12 feet tall






Then there were tons of great plants for sale. 



Fothergilla x intermedia 'Blue Shadow' 

Acer palmatum 'Sagara Nishiki' or 'Nishiki Gasane' That creamy variegation is apricot in the spring and slowly turns to this color.  Fiery autumn color. 



Great evergreen selection. 

So THAT'S what they mean when they talk about containing bamboo: I learn something new every day.  (Actually, the fence is to keep the potted bamboo from falling over every time a breeze blows.)
Next time you're in the area, make sure to stop by this great nursery!  
Happy weekend all!

24 comments:

  1. That's what 40 years, a lot of dedication and hard work will do to an open field. What a fabulous place to live and work, surrounded by plants at all times. Quercus dentata pinnatifida is magnificent. I'm racking my brain where I may plant such a beauty. Did anything come home with you?

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    1. It does seem like a dream to live there. Nothing came home with me because I'd just bought a few plants from them at Sorticulture.

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  2. Wonderful! I spoke with these folks when they wanted to become a plant lust nursery, nice people too.

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    1. Yes, really nice people and very knowledgeable.

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  3. What a fantastic garden/nursery! If I'm ever in the neighborhood...

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  4. What a great place and beautiful display garden. Looks like you enjoyed your visit there. I remember the first time I saw a huge Gunnera like that, it was at Van Dusen Gardens in Vancouver. There's a large one (or there used to be) at Point Defiance Park near the ferry terminal to Vashon.

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    1. It was fun to finally visit the nursery after having seen them and their plants at sales.

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  5. Mature gardens are the best! This was a bit of a greenery shock, as I had just read Gerhard's post about a very different (dry!) nursery.

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    1. Western Washington is a pretty green sort of place.

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  6. Don't know if I've ever seen a Gunnera in person, so thanks for the size clarification. You get a sense of what this nursery was like "before" in the view across the road and another one into open space. They've beautifully filled it in!

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  7. Beautiful spot and beautiful plants! Thank you for the tour : )

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  8. Thank you for sharing these pictures with us, Peter!

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    1. It's always fun to share such wonderful places.

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  9. I love the 'feel' of this nursery - more like a garden. Great taste in plant selection, too.

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    1. It really did feel more like visiting the garden of a friend but where you could take home plants.

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  10. Photos like this really do have me wondering whether we should scrap our remodel plans and move north...

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  11. We were there once a long time ago. I don't remember seeing such a great display garden. Thanks for the photos.

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    1. The display garden was a really nice surprise.

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  12. Wow. What a wonderful place, and what wonderful dedication to flora. Thank you for sharing it.

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  13. Just came across this post on your blog. Thank you, thank you, (and I might add danke shoen, merci beaucoup and muchas gracias) for your kind comments and beautiful photos. (Your pictures managed to miss the weeds!} We are proud of our garden and are so grateful when people notice our efforts. We continually try new plants to see what does well in our climate. It's a never ending effort that we love to share. We are extremely fortunate to have a crew of dedicated plant nerds to help us almost keep up! We are currently doing considerable re-planting and pruning to let more light into older plantings and to make room for new plants. We view gardening as an art form and we hope it will be even better for your next visit.

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