Monday, February 19, 2007

Guerrilla Gardening

Happy rainy Monday, and a big thanks to all of you that came out and visited us this weekend! We sent off our plants to lots of new homes over this holiday, but we still have lots of new stuff to check out, and even more on the way!

We wanted to kick off this week with quick blog about a gardening movement that originated in the UK and is rapidly spreading across the world. We kept reading about these guys that go by the name Guerrilla Gardeners in gardening and art & culture magazines and finally got around to checking out their website. They are all about 'refurbishing urban blight' - going in and planting abandoned plots of land in urban areas...regardless if permission to do so is granted! Though it might be crossing a few public versus private land issues, we are really scratching our heads to come up with exactly what would be wrong with planting a garden in places that really need one.

Anyway, do take a second to check out their work and the network of gardeners/urban crusaders in their link section , and think about doing some urban guerrilla gardening of your own. If sneaking out into the night under cover with bulbs under arm is a bit much for you, keep in mind all the schools and community centers that always need some green thumbs to lend a hand. Us plant geeks need to unite and act on our ideals that gardening can indeed improve the world!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Big ole plant SALE this weekend!

Juniper Blue Ice

This weekend is President’s Day weekend, which means:

1. A lot of you have an extra few days off to work in your garden
2. We’ll be having a PLANT SALE!!!!

We brought in a TON of new plants to the garden this week! To kick off spring with style, and to celebrate the wonderful weather predicted for the week ahead, we’re having a plant sale!

10% ALL plants in the garden this weekend, Friday the 16 through Monday the 19th!

Plus, our gardeners will be on had to help you out with your gardening and design challenges all throughout the weekend.

If you haven’t stopped in to see us in a while, now is the time to do it!

See you this weekend!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

New Plants are IN!

The cold snap is gone, the weather is suppose to be perfect this weekend, and if your yard looks anything like our garden, you can probably use some new plants. And we’ve got you covered!

We’ve got some very new cool plants in this week – and more are on the way! – from our different growers. We wanted to spotlight a few cool ones we got from one of our favorite growers, Sommer’s Nursery.

Juniperus squamata 'Blue Star'

We brough in more of last years favorite, Juniperus squamata ‘Blue Ice’. You HAVE to see this plant in person to appreciate just how cool this color is! We are not normally a huge fan of junipers in general, but we absolutlely love this speciman!

Pieris japonica variegata

Pieris japonica variegata is one of our favs of the moment. Stunning colored foliage and branches, we love it’s dainty, drooping look. It takes full sun to partial shade, we are told it can take full shade but won’t bloom as much.

chaenomeles speciosa toyo nishiki

Also be sure to check out chaenomeles speciosa toyo nishiki – STUNNING blooms right now, and we love the structure of the plant itself. This too can take full sun to part shade, and will get to about 3 or 5 feet in height.

Corylus avellana 'Contorta'

Speaking of structure, another favorite from last years Spring Garden Show is Corylus avellana 'Contorta'. It’s spindly branches and cool little acorn looking seeds make it an excellent choice as an accent plant in a pot or key spot in your garden.

Pinus wallichiana 'Zebrina'

Rounding out the weird plants for this week, we have Pinus wallichiana 'Zebrina'. We love this moderate to slow growing evergreen oddity that we are going to add it to the landscape we are designing for the Spring Garden Show! It gets an even cooler shape as it gets bigger, from what we are told, and takes sun to partial shade in well drained soil.

All of these plants are in stock right now (and, if we happen to sell out, we can always order them in for you!) – and, as an added bonus, Friday through Monday, for the Old Town Orange Antique Affair event this President’s Day Weekend, all plants will be 10% off!

Monday, February 12, 2007

Plant of the Week February 12th

Plant of the week this week: Buddleia 'Silver Anniversary'. This plant has some AMAZING foliage - silvery white leaves and stems that branch out into beautiful little white buds. This buddleia is an excellent addition to any garden, it's a great accent piece, with it's silver/gray color really bringing in that needed contrast we are always talking about! Plus, it's a notorious hummingbird and butterfly target!

Here is what grower Native Son's has to say about the buddleia family in general:

"Butterfly bush or Summer lilac. Large grouping of evergreen or deciduous shrubs along with some trees and herbaceous perennials. Grown for their masses of often fragrant and nectar-rich flowers that attract birds and butterflies. Flowering usually occurs in summer and early autumn. Plant in full sun and fertile, well-drained soil. Plants may double in size when placed against a sunny wall. Ideal choice for rocky soils or near water courses. Cut back every year or two to maintain form and heavy flower production. Seasonal pruning will extend the flowering. Hardiness varies. Tropical and subtropical Asia, America."

We've got them in right now - stop by and pick one up for your garden!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Plant of the Week February 5th

Corokia, Frosted Chocolate
Originally uploaded by Brande Jackson.
This week's plant of the week is Corokia 'Frosted Chocolate'. It's our plant of the week because, well, we love it!

It's has beautiful glossy foliage in a very cool brown/grey color, we love it's open, loose structure and the tiny yellow flowers it gets in the spring and summer. We include it on our list of plants that provide diversity to a landscape - its unique colored leaves make it a real standout in the garden. We recently used a bunch of these in a landscape design, and the colors worked wonderfully against the blue grey tone of the home.

Here is what grower Native Son's says about the Corokia family:

Evergreen shrubs noted for their twisting, wiry, interlacing branches. Tiny yellow star-like flowers appear from spring to summer and are followed, in ideal conditions, by small variously colored fruits. Stems are ash gray to black with diminutive, sparse foliage. Most Corokias generally prefer full sun and well-drained soils that do not hold copious moisture particularly in winter. The unusual form can be used to dramatic effect when backlit by night lighting in the evening garden. Hardy to 10F. Native to New Zealand.

We have them in stock right now - stop by and pick one up!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Gardening in Baghdad

We just came across a great article about some other garden devotee's - those working in Iraq.

"Gardeners shed blood to beautify Baghdad
By Hannah Allam
McClatchy Newspapers

BAGHDAD — The flowers appear overnight, and in the unlikeliest of places: carnations near a checkpoint, roses behind razor wire, and gardenias in a square known for suicide bombings.

Sometimes, U.S. armored vehicles hop a median and mow down the myrtle, leaving Baghdad parks workers to fume and reach for their trowels. When insurgents poured kerosene over freshly planted seedlings, landscapers swore a revenge of ficus trees and olive groves.

It's all part of a stealthy campaign to turn the entire capital into a green zone.

Jaafar Hamid al Ali, the Baghdad parks supervisor, leads the offensive. He's got a multi-million-dollar budget, along with 1,500 intrepid employees and a host of formidable enemies. There's the fussy climate, salty soil, and nonstop violence that killed 30 of his workers in 2006. Every fallen gardener, Ali said, is a martyr in the struggle to beautify Baghdad.

"My principle is, for every drop of Iraqi blood, we must plant something green," he said. "One gives disappointment, the other gives hope." "

You can check out more of the article by clicking here. We always get inspired by those who fight all odds to make their community a better place in one way or another...