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, July 24, 2018

Revisiting the Garden of George Shriver and Omar Watson

The Northwest Perennial Alliance listing for the Shriver/Watson garden noted that this garden had never before been open for the NPA.  Approaching the garden it seemed familiar to me for some reason.

Yes, I've been in this garden before in 2015 with my blogging pal, Alison when it was part of the Federal Way Symphony Garden Tour.  My post of that visit is here.  What a treat to revisit this splendid garden and see what has changed in three years.

"The street side garden cleverly and demurely compliments the gardens adjacent to it."

"It's when you enter the back yard through a periwinkle blue gate that ou are astonished by the inventive use of colors and textures through screens, arbors, pottery, sculptures, a bottle tree and benches."  I remember there being two bottle trees in place during our previous visit and more columns placed in the sloping border.   Gardeners are always changing things around.

Opuntia and Agaves.  Sigh.  There were also tuberous begonias but my picture was too dark.    Notice the clever milk crate gabions!

Beautifully planted containers dot the paved areas.  

"The waterfall and fountains emit a sense of tranquility and the sloping borders surrounding the pool add privacy. "

"The garden includes perennials, annuals, flowering trees, shrubs and evergreens.  Many of the flowers were selected to attract hummingbirds and other Northwest birds and many different butterflies."

"Some of the unusual and unique plants include crape myrtle, gunneras, golden hops and kiwi.  A small herb and vegetable garden is incorporated as well as grape vines and blueberries."

"Many of the art objects in the garden invoke memories of earlier times or places.  The bottle tree was made from wine tasting gatherings and other contemporary pieces were admired and purchased specifically for this garden."

At the top of the hill, after following the winding paths through the sloping border, one finds a bench with a view of the pool area.

I love this use of doorknobs!

Heading back out to the front garden. 

Thank you George and Omar for opening your gorgeous garden for so many of us to enjoy!


  1. I remember visiting this garden with you too. It's so colorful and full of flowers! I don't think there were as many doorknobs on sticks, perhaps they're collecting them. Thanks for sharing it again, it's interesting to see what has changed.

  2. You had the perfect day to visit this garden. The word that comes to my mind when looking at those fantastic pictures is exuberance. Their Gunnera is impressive, and the potted with glass bamboo... perfect color choices.

  3. There are many tranquil spot and paths, Peter. I love the colorful open spaces, around the pool and waterfall. Nice pictures!

  4. Okay, this tour (and yet another heatwave) have once again put me in the mood to move to the PNW. I loved all the bright color here.

    1. There's no time like the present to move and you'd be welcomed by a lot of great gardeners.

  5. Too much color for me, but I also think you need it with a swimming pool or the pool color will be all you see. Love some of the dramatic foliage.

  6. Wow, it is packed with plants. You would have to go through there more than once to see all.

  7. Such bold use of color and they've managed to fit a lot in without overwhelming, making it feel larger than it really is. That patch of grass looks as smooth as a putting green!

  8. Ah, a garden we did get to visit! I loved this beautiful garden. And that remands me that I still have not done anything with my photos from that day, including your garden. I guess I have something to post, after all. I'd better get cracking....tomorrow.

  9. So colorful, packed with plants, and immaculate. What a fun garden! It's the immaculate part that impresses me the most, I don't have a single spot in my garden that would compare :)

  10. I love the stone paths winding through the dense and verdant plantings.

  11. Hi, I am just seeing this post after finding it from a google search. I am trying to locate my high school art teacher and his name was Omar Watson. Wondering if you had any contact info for him. He changed my life and I wanted to tell him that. Thank you in advance.


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