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, June 30, 2016

Hey! Did that Sign Say Marenakos Rock Center?

We were in the Issaquah area last weekend to visit a few Northwest Perennial Alliance Open gardens over the weekend and the sight of a sign in the distance caused the plant mobile to stray from the appointed turn as the driver said, "Hey!  Did that Sign Say Marenakos Rock Center?"    Marenakos provides and delivers, free of charge,  all of the stone used in the display gardens at  he Northwest Flower and Garden Show and they also put together a beautiful space in the vendor area both at that show and at the Tacoma Home and Garden Show.  Let's explore the source of all that handsome stone!

Bag lady?  

Why yes, you may put this in my garden any day!  Cascading into a huge koi pond, okay?

Natural rock, one side polished, and rusty metal.  Who could ask for anything more in a garden gate?

Planter anyone?

A little AC/DC as background for the next picture. 'Nuff said. 

I wonder if this is that  cultured stone so highly prized in Chinese gardens? 

So many water feature possibilities. 

No need to try and envision what  a particular color of paver or wall stone will look like assembled as this is only part of the large patio and wall sample area.

It wasn't until I was sorting and editing pictures that I noticed the, ahem, water feature part of this piece.   Walking by it a couple of times,  the detail work of the face had my attention.

Stone for interior spaces too!

Now these are special work spaces!  

Warm and inviting!

The fun continues outside.

This archway could come home with me too!

What ancient people lived here?

I tried to knock at the door but there wasn't one. 

The neighbors weren't saying anything either. 

Seeing all of this and the huge yard in back that was stacked with all sorts of rock gave me an even greater appreciation for garden designers who have a vision, can put it down on paper, and from the wide array of possibilities, narrow their choices to create their vision.

If you could create a garden using any stone feature(s) you desired, what would you use?

For more about Marenakos, visit their website here

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Wednesday Vignette - Eye Candy

Wednesday Vignette is hosted by the fabulous Anna at Flutter and Hum.  Visit her blog to see her vignette and links to those of other participating bloggers.

Ribbon Candy?

A magic stone dropped in a red sea?  

Being a magpie, shiny brightly colored objects catch my eye.  Do you prefer the calm of neutral tones, and matte finishes? 

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Now You See Them, Now You Don't!

Do you notice anything missing from this picture?  Do you see the three rings on the right side of the steps where, oh I don't know, maybe plant pots were sitting?

A little grumpy this evening because between 3:00p.m. and 6:00 p.m. while we were home, a thief decided to take my three Agave parryi 'J.C.Raulston'  from our front steps.  I'd been happy that they had made it unmolested this long and just figured that maybe folks in this area didn't like them or something.

Here they were last year when I'd just re potted them from their nursery pots.  It surprised me that they'd put on some growth and were nearly covering the gravel mulch.

Oh well, they were sweet while they lasted.  Of course it would be swell if they magically reappeared as they looked welcoming on the steps and echoed the form of the Agave ovatifolia.

One wouldn't want to have a post be entirely upsetting so here are a couple of things that have made me smile recemtly:

The new leaves of this Schefflera delavayi are all nicely incised, a nice contrast to my other S. delavayi that has very smooth edges.

The topiary trees by the back steps still look good there even when the brugmansias came outside to join them.
 Happy gardening everyone!

Monday, June 27, 2016

In A Vase On Monday - Giving Up

In A Vase On Monday is hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.  Click here to visit her blog and see her Monday Vase and links to those of other participating bloggers.

On Sunday, I got to spend the entire day in my garden.  One might think that because a group is coming to tour in three weeks that I would use the time to make the space a bit more presentable but instead,  decided to take on new projects like removing a thicket of holy, cutting down trees, and pulling and digging up inherited Vinca major which carpeted a steep slope.  By the end of the day, my hands and most of the rest of my body hurt and I felt every year my age and then some!  As twilight arrived I gathered a few flowers to throw into a vase but was really not in the mood.  

Berberis 'Orange Rocket,' Alstroemeria, Eryngium 'Big Blue,' Phygelius 'Flop All Over Everything And Make the Gardener Crazy' and some bamboo found their way onto the table.

Oh and there was this bunch of fragrant Tagetes lemmonii.

The back table is crowded with plants waiting to go into the ground or pots and other stuff.  This frog decided to help by choosing three vases

And we both got distracted by this cool  Corymbia citriodora/Eucalyptus citriodora found at Jungle Fever a few weeks ago.  Not hardy here, it'll have to live in a pot but the fragrance of the leaves is more than worth making space for it in the greenhouse in the winter.  The leaves have a pleasant texture to them and the tag says that they can be used in the bath as a natural citrus scrub brush and in potpourri.

Here we have the first attempt joined by a potted tuberous begonia that was sitting on the table.

Frog doesn't think this will work t all.

Maybe consolidating it into one vase and changing the context would help. It's okay but try again.

This natural shelf in the contorted filbert could make anything look good - except this poor thing.

Maybe it's time to throw in the towel (or flowers in this case) and just give up. After all, last week's vase is still doing just fine. 

 However,  the Eryngium got cut instead of being staked up with the rest of them and couldn't be wasted so this much simplaer group o flowers got thrown together to bring inside and enjoy.  
 What did you put in a vase today?