Friday, April 18, 2014

Magnolia laevifolia is my favorite plant in the garden, this week…

I love magnolias, in fact even the word “magnolia” makes me happy. Thank god I’m not going to have children because if I did I might just have to name our first born Magnolia, it could just almost be bearable for a girl child (no doubt she'd be called Maggie), but what a curse for a little boy.

The image at the top was taken in my garden, the one below was taken at Cistus Nursery when we visited last weekend

And so was this one…

I’ve been in love with Magnolia laevifolia ever since spotting it in the Kennedy School garden years ago. I already had a couple of them in my garden but this one is a new addition, from my friend Bridget (she moved out of her garden (and house) a month or so back).

It’s crazy ahead of my own M. laevifolia, and that’s not a bad thing since it means the floral show will last longer if the plants space themselves out.

The fragrant white flowers make me weak in the knees, but if I had to choose I’d claim the brown fuzzy pre-flower bits as my favorite. They stick around for months!

But the blooms. They are pretty fabulous, and there are so many of them!

This is one of those plants that's suffered a bit of an identity crisis. As Cistus Nursery tells the tale... "Stunning plant! Recently called M. dianica and previously Michelia yunnanensis but this plant is always fabulous with its graceful, ropey foliage; profuse, intensely fragrant white blooms in spring and summer; and first rate cinnamon indumentum on the buds in autumn! Easily accepts sun to half shade with regular water. Frost hardy in USDA zone 8 and very possibly into mid zone 7..."

And Xera Plants says "A wonderful evergreen shrub with rounded leaves that are deep green and backed with a brown indumentum which coats the stems as well...The flower buds are coated in brown fur as well and are formed in the previous year and are showy through the winter. They open to 6 petaled white very fragrant flowers in April and are profuse born along the lithe stems. Unlike other Magnolias they are not brittle and are not damaged in snow and ice bending easily. This undemanding and handsome shrub is at home in full sun as well as shade in well drained soil with regular irrigation though it is tolerant of dry conditions when established..."

I am irrationally in love with this plant. I'd love to be able to include 10 or 20 magnolias in our garden but realistically that's just not possible. This one however could fit in any and every garden. You need one, really. What are you waiting for?

Okay, rescue me from my magnolia madness...what are you in love with in your garden this week???

All material © 2009-2014 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

After the sale, making a day of it...

As I mentioned yesterday my friends Peter and Alison made the trip down from Tacoma for the big HPSO plant sale. Since they were in town they had to make the trip out Highway 30 and invited me to come along. First stop Cistus, of course. There was so much to see...

This Epimedium wushanense (I believe) was theatrically lit for our visit.

As was the Schefflera delavayi.

I was so enchanted by these yucca I forgot to record their name. Bad blogger!

Yucca faxoniana, perhaps? Or maybe Yucca filifera...

Yellow flowering Hesperaloe parviflora, you don't see that everyday...

And more beautiful abutilon flowers.

Pittosporum patulum

Leptospermum lanigerum - purple leaf form

New foliage on a Dendropanax...

Another Elegia capensis tempting me (I saw one weekend before last and wanted it too)...

And a freaky variant of Echium candicans 'Star of Madeira', I think Peter ended up with one of these.

This photo reminds me of something very sad. My Sonchus canariensis has passed on to the compost pile in the sky. Late last summer I didn't notice the container it was in wasn't draining properly until the foliage started to wither. Root rot. It was too far gone to save. So very sad...

Ugh! Another death. My Musella lasiocarpa hasn't recovered from our winter cold. It should have been brought into the house or s.p. greenhouse, not left in the unheated garage. But there were so many things to care for during that time, something was bound to slip through the cracks.

Happier thoughts! (lots of spiky things)...

Here's most of my group getting ready to check out. That's Nathan behind the counter (yes, he works there), Heather in front of the counter, Scott with the hat, and Alison in the orange t-shirt. Peter can't be seen because he's off...

Falling in love with a yucca...

Cistus is the center of the PNW universe if you're looking for fabulous Yucca rostrata...

Dyckia 'Naked Lady', for those afraid of extra spikes.

Didn't get the name of this one but I'm pretty sure I should have bought it. (*and we have a name: Synadenium grantii, thank you Mr Subjunctive*)

Leucadendrons!

So what did I buy? Well this fabulous Nolina microcarpa...

And a couple of Othonna cheirifolia (below) as well as an (unpictured) Cerinthe major 'Purpurascens'...

We spent so much time at Cistus that our stop at Joy Creek Nursery (just up the road a bit) was cut short since they close at 5pm. I did buy a fabulous Persicaria Brushstrokes, which I neglected to take a photo of. Instead I was transfixed by this Melianthus major 'Antonow's Blue'...looking very purple.

And several choice Euphorbia glowing in the late afternoon sun...a day spent plant shopping with friends, does it get any better than that?

All material © 2009-2014 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The spring Hardy Plant Society of Oregon plant sale…

Last Saturday I attended what's been called the largest plant sale on the West Coast. HPSO's Hortlandia. Every year there seems to be an "it" plant at the sale, one you see over and over again. At first I thought it was going to be the rodgersia...

But part way through the sale I decided it was the podophyllum. There were so many fabulous ones, and tales of even better ones that were scooped up before the sale even opened to the public (volunteers get to shop early)...

There were several agaves. This one in The Desert Northwest booth...

And this pair in the Blooming Junction booth.

Speaking of blooming, this beschorneria was hard to pass up.

However I did grab one of these Abutilon 'Red Tiger', mine isn't blooming yet but has several fat buds...

Artemisia ludoviciana 'Valerie Finnis', beautiful! I got a division from a blogging friend last fall.

I admired this bizarre Aesculus 'Laciniata' and then later saw it in my friend Peter's haul. Great minds...

This is interesting, both of these plants were labeled Quercus dentata 'Pinnatifida' yet look how different their leaves are. I noticed the same thing last fall when I bought my tree.

Cercidiphyllum japonicum 'Rotfuchs'...Katsura 'Red Fox'...I was tempted. Very tempted.

This poor plant was fondled by every single passer-by...

Heliamphora heterodoxa x minor, dubbed as the most amazing plant at the show by a friend. For $45 I had to leave it behind.

There is a whole "garden art" section to the sale which I typically ignore. My friends Peter (the Outlaw) and Alison (Bonney Lassie) were down for the sale and spent some time checking it all out. When I went looking for them Peter had just fallen for this fabulous seedy/poddy/vasey thing. I like it and I think it went home with him.

So what went home with me? Well as I mentioned I picked up an Abutilon 'Red Tiger' and I also grabbed one of these Geranium maculatum 'Elizabeth Ann'. I love the leaves...

After all they are "sophisticated!" But the flowers I saw when I looked this one up on plant lust. Yikes! I think I'll be cutting them off.

Look another Banksia marginata! I lost mine last winter and the owner of The Desert Northwest made sure I tried again. I've got just the spot picked out.

And finally my only other plant purchase at the sale, Microcachrys tetragona. I bought one last fall when I visited The Desert Northwest and asked for another. I love this plant!

You might be thinking "only 4 plants?"...worry not, there was more plant shopping afterwards. That's tomorrow's post...

All material © 2009-2014 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.