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Archive for the ‘2010 garden journal flashbacks’ Category

On our yearly early spring plant buying road trip we always go to Joy Creek first, then on to Cistus on Sauvie Island.  The first time I went to Cistus I recognized only a small proportion of the plants on offer.  Here is a true collectors’ nursery.  I have heard that Dan Hinkley shops at Cistus.  (True or rumour?  The gardening elite do all know each other.)  Any nursery with so many cutting edge plants is highly educational and I now recognize maybe one third of what owner Sean Hogan sells.  I hope you enjoy perusing the photos of these unusual plants.

3 May 2010

by the parking area

entering the sales room

greenhouse exotica

in the greenhouse

Pseudopanax ferox...had this, but a very tiny one...killed it...just bought a new gallon size in 2012. Looks like it is made of metal.

Rubus lineatus...amazing leaves. Also had it, and it died, and I just bought it again....a familiar theme.

inside the greenhouse

The checkout desk cat

outdoor sales area. The metal chicken is for outdoor barbecue feasts. Note the clear-roofed plant room to the back right; there is one in each corner.

If I wanted this so much that it still haunts me, and did not buy it...I should have. It was not in bloom in 2012 or I surely would have.

display borders

display borders

detail

27 April 2011

the driveway

In 2011 a new path had been opened up to the left of the greenhouse entrance.

beckoning

punctuation

new path

gold...

layered...

...gold

exploring

returning to the greenhouse entrance...to the left, an area which will become another new path...

exotic and boggy plants

boxes of water

I adore this water feature.  In 2011 I acquired from the city of Long Beach two big wooden boxes in which glass had been delivered.  I placed them just like this, sort of offset from each…and filled them with soil and plants.  What was I thinking??

plants of desire

again with the Pseudopanax ferox.

Psuedopanax ferox:  I saw a big specimen when touring with Allan in north Seattle in 2005.  It did indeed look like a metal sculpture.  Later, much later, I acquired a tiny six inch pot of it, so small and slow growing that it got buried by a weed.  In spring of 2011 I found one tough leaf sticking out of that pot, but that particular plant never did put on any size…Thus my gallon, acquired in 2012….Will I succeed with it this time?

in the big greenhouse

one of the regular staff members

Chaenomeles

I did acquire in 2011 this gorgeous Chaenomeles (Japanese flowering quince) and planted it in a rough area in my little woods.  It still survives.  The deep mahogany blooms spoke to me.  I hope it gives me a flower or two in 2012.

blue bottle tree by the parking lot

the 2011 Joy Creek/Cistus haul

I don’t know what was wrong with me that day. I rejected some plants at Cistus cos my new garden has almost too lush soil and ended up with some room left in the car…unheard of.  But I made up for it in 2012….

12 April 2012

The disadvantage to going so early is that the display gardens are not yet showing as spectacularly as just two weeks later, although a Daphne outside the main greenhouse filled the air with intoxicating sweethouse.

sales desk cat

in the greenhouse

another cat

Echium candicans 'Star of Madeira'

I did very much want to buy the Echium but feared that it would simply rot away from moist cold in my garden.  It is so beautiful.  I would have taken a chance if it might have bloomed during the upcoming garden tour.

At Cistus part of the enjoyment is the entertaining plant labeling.  For example, on the Pseuodpanax ferox which I did buy for myself:  “One of those cool dinosaur plants found down Kiwi way that catches the eye and triggers the lust gene in plant geeks and adventurous gardeners. Juvenile leaves are dark brown, long, very narrow, stiff, and saw-toothed, growing downward from a central stem — odd indeed. Slow growing, trees reach 20 ft in 20+ years, only then producing adult foliage, shorter, wider, and green. Sun to dappled or bright shade and regular summer water. Frost hardy in USDA zone 8b in a sheltered location, though even in Portland we keep most of ours in containers and shelter during winter cold.”  You can read all sorts of information like that in their mail order catalog.

I have no budget for the plant tour, and by that I mean I will buy any plant I want for just this one year.  (Uh huh.)  Time will tell whether before July 21st we make another trip inland to feed the frenzied tour-driven plant lust.  I’d like to visit Sheila and Joy Creek/Cistus could very well be on the way….but down Sheila’s way we have Dancing Oaks and Gossler Farms, and my friend Shaz sent me a gift certificate to Ferguson’s Fragrant Nursery with an invitation to visit her near Portland….and our car is simply nowhere near big enough.

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I love our yearly trip to Joy Creek and its neighbour down the road, Cistus Nursery.  Because if you are still slogging through all these garden tours, you are probably also a plant nut, here are scenes from three years of spring shopping trips.  I do remember one glorious year that I was there more than once, and once I even got to take a design workshop there with Lucy Hardiman and Ann Lovejoy.  The Joy Creek schedule of classes would be well worth attending every single spring-autumn weekend were it not for the fact that we live two hours way.

3 May 2010

Agave with the house in background; Oddly I have never taken much to Agave...but it looks wonderful here.

Sambucus 'Sutherland Gold' (??)

Alliums by the small circular lawn

the border we worked on in the Ann & Lucy workshop; It's been redone since then.

gravel path

wind resistant English delphiniums in bud

glorious piles of ingredients

Joy Creek is very big on using quarter-ten washed gravel in the garden beds.

Just Google “Joy Creek gravel” and you will find plenty of information.

They even use it under their small lawn near the house.  If you poke your finger at the grass roots you can feel the gravel base which helps the lawn hold up beautifully to lots of foot traffic.

I love the way the gravel sweeps from the paths right in to mulch the beds.

sunny path

mid spring

Dodecathon?

display gardens go on and on...

and have a variety of metal sculptures...

mixed borders...shrubs, trees, perennials

splash of gold

Dianthus

magestic

27 April 2011


Many plants are tagged; if not, you can show the photo on your phone or camera to the helpful staff to get the ID

Gunnera leaves emerging

Rheum...something...ornamental rhubarb. I had one at my old house...wish I had bought one...

Springtime was LATE in 2011.

Euphorbia backed with gold

If that's a Forsythia, and I think it is, I want to prune mine like that.

textural gravel

more gold

tulips and gravel-based lawn

bright tulips

Pulsatilla

must have....

I was completely smitten with this tree that was sitting on the sold table.  Around and around the table I walked taking photos of the tree.   Took photo of tag on tree: Crataegus Laevigata Contorta …contorted ‘Paul’s Scarlet’ Hawthorn.  Turned out it was the only one…and had been sold to Kathy, one of the nursery workers (or Katie, I wrote it down..somewhere). So she let me buy it, because she can get the next one that comes in. I have Googled it and find the uncontorted version gets to 20′, but this tag says 6′. Wondering if that is true.  We planted it in our front garden, and as it went in the ground I heard the trunk make an ominous crack.  But although it was shocky for awhile, it came through winter of 2011-12 and is leafing out nicely in spring 2012.

12 April 2012

Never have we gone on our spring road trip this early….but I had a nagging desire to shop for the coolest plants ever since having found out a couple of weeks before that our garden had been selected as one of the tour gardens for the Music in the Gardens tour for 2012.  And because we were selected as Ilwaco’s business of the year for 2010….but the ceremony was in autumn of 2011….it seems one of our duties is to be grand marshalls of  the early May  Loyalty Day parade in Ilwaco.  (This is ironic because I often grumbled in the past about the McCarthy-esque origins of Loyalty Day, and being a non-patriot who’s fond of the world and who does not like nationalism….well, I could go on, but it might sound unappreciative of the honour, and I do believe it is an honour.)  Along with that, we have to make Long Beach perfect for its parade day (Ilwaco is Saturday, Long Beach is Sunday) and that’s a longwinded way of explaining why we went to Joy Creek so early, before more tender plants were on offer.

The gardens were rather bare. I like this fencing.

another neat fence barrier

early spring pizzazz

tufts of moss atop a stone fence pillar with garden beyond

Look at the way the white petals have drifted down one side of the tree...

rebar art

The sales area had some wonderful rebar trellises including this fan shaped one.  As some of my friends know, my former co-gardener made exceptional rebar garden art.  I wish I had taken up on his offer to teach me to weld with his oxygen and acetylene (??) torch but I was kinda scared of it.  Kaboom!

A ceramic artist had made birdbaths so beautifully mounted on little tree trunk poles.  I had to have the fish one.  Because we are going to be on the garden tour and need beautiful objects to keep up with all those fancy gardens I’ve toured in the cities.

How could I resist?

She had also made clever birdhouses with the holes sized, we were told, just right for the birds.

birdhouses

I resisted the birdhouses because I had not resisted pretty much any plant that caught my fancy….again with the garden tour excuse.  And our next stop at Cistus would assuredly provide more plant temptations.

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Cranberry farming creates many beautiful sights on the Long Beach Peninsula, from the haze of red on the field to the sparkling sprays of irrigation jets in the mist.  Every year Ilwaco’s Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum (formerly the Ilwaco Heritate Museum) hosts the Cranberrian fair with a “bog bus” (actually the handsome old Long Beach trolley) that will take you to see the autumn harvest in progress.  In October of 2010 the tour happened on a particularly beautiful autumn day.

the bog bus posed to take us touring

Cranberry Research Station

The trolley took us out of Ilwaco to the Cranberry Research Station with its bogs and its Cranberry Museum.

Cranberry Museum

cranberry harvesting tools

The method of harvesting does not seem to have changed much over the years…

corralling the berries

wading in

herding berries

cranberries

a modern procedure

cranberry truck

across the bog

the old-fashioned harvest

bog bus and harvesters on Pioneer Road

Heathers are planted alongside the bogs to encourage bees early in the season.  Bees are also brought in by beekeepers to pollenate the crop.

an edge of heather

view from the porch of the Cranberry Museum

Red is the perfect colour to wear to the Cranberrian fair.

Get your picture taken in a harvester cutout!

Inside the museum, we had a delicious lunch catered by Beach House Catering and perused Cranberrian Fair t- shirts, a wine tasting, a walk through display of old harvesting implements and history, and a gift shop full on cranberry related items (soap, food, even lampshades painted with cranberries).

in the museum

a collection of old Cranberry Festival buttons

In 2012, the fair will be on October 13th and 14th.

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 We continue the tour with the last two cottages.  It’s past time that I get around to saying that the tour is put on each year by the Cannon Beach History Center.  If Moon-Shell Cottage looks familiar to anyone who toured in 2011, that’s because it was on the tour two years in a row.  (How I wish one of the cottages I missed in 2009 had been on.  I especially wish that June Kroft’s cottage and the one with the tower would be on again.)

five:  Moon-Shell Cottage

Along a street that ends right at the beach sits Moon-Shell Cottage, a nightly rental.

Moon-Shell Cottage

Moon-Shell view across a neighbouring lawn

The bedrooms are comfy and small although don’t speak strongly to me of an owner’s personality.  I did especially like, and now have in my own pseudo-cottage, a line of postcards on a string like you can see over one of the beds.

Moon-Shell bedrooms

postcard display

The living room and open kitchen have the most cottagey features, with….

a stone fireplace

a driftwood mirror

a window nook

and intricately beamed ceilings.

interlude

Walking to the next cottage, we pass a classical beach yard…

casual beach outdoors

and fence….

beachcombing fence

six

The very last cottage has an enclosed back porch which must once have been the exterior.

enclosed porch

It’s now a big mudroom/breezeway.  Inside the back door is an old fashioned kitchen.

old brick and wallpaper

like a grandma kitchen

I do like old wallpaper and the bathroom had even more of it with three floral patterns.  No, that is not too much of a good thing.

wallpapers three

The bedrooms are so tidy that I think it must be another rental cottage.  The attic bedroom with tiny floral print would be my choice.

bedrooms

For awhile I considered trying to replicate the look of the interior cedar shake living room walls in our soon-to-be new (old) double wide home.  Eventually we went with white paint but I still think this is a cool look….even though I usually don’t go at all for wooden paneling of any sort.  (That contradicts my total love for the wood-interiored Windshell Cottage that enraptured me earlier on the tour, but it was an exception to my no-wood-paneling rule.)

The shakes seem to bring outdoor Cannon Beach cottage style (where it seems the only allowable exterior is shakes!) indoors.

shake wall in living room

built in charm

wall mirror reflection

last 2010 tour day photo…back porch

If you decide to go on the tour this year, remember:  It’s always in September, and get your tickets early.  Like the museum’s Facebook page to keep apprised of the tour date.  Every year that is at least one cottage that thrills me, not always as much as the personable and quirky Windshell, but enough to make the tour always worthwhile.

 

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I continue reminiscing about the cottage tour in the Tolovana neighbourhood, for which unless there is a hint in the photos, I won’t be able to remember the names of the cottages.

three

Now, in keeping with the confusion of blogging about something almost two years later, is this indeed the next cottage or just a cute one we passed on the way?

Quite probably the third stop

I think it is the third stop because of the view out the back into the woods….

woodsy back yard

a massive fireplace decorated with shells

There was a locally famous Cannon Beach fireplace builder whose name I forget but he may have been the one to build this…

cottage windows outside and in

Interlude

along the walk between cottages, a beautiful garden

four: The Wave Crest Inn

approaching from below

Climbing a sloping side street, we approach the old Wave Crest inn from below.  It fronts onto the main street and has dramatic dormers; note the oddly shaped one in lower left photo.

Wave Crest

by the front door

Downstairs the owner has created an ecletic and comfortable series of sitting and dining and reading areas out of the large spacious rooms.

main floor

I remember admiring the bouquet and then being a little disconcerted by the several crucifixes on one wall (the latter not being conducive to vacation relaxation mood, mine, at least.  Interestingly, one of the cottages from a previous tour had been a nun’s retreat.).

a room with a massive fireplace wall

tie decorating

philosophy

books

view from west window

Upstairs were all the bedrooms.  (I liked this place so much that if only there had been a bedroom on the main floor, I would like to stay there.  Oh, a bedroom with en suite bathroom. The upstairs rooms, I think, share baths in the hallway.)  Remember that funny half dormer window on the corner?  Here it is from the inside.

corner dormer

I loved each and every upstairs bedroom and every window and view.

western view

picture, windows

The light was beautiful from every direction and I could imagine lounging in any of these rooms, reading and napping.

so comfy

I probably would pick the one with the westernmost view to catch the sunset.  But the view down to the lower deck was also enticing.

view to deck

overlooking the deck

Back downstairs, I had a look in the enormous kitchen.

kitchen with beadboard ceiling

I admired the dining room again, loath to leave the place.

dining table

sideboard

living room

The sense of history is strong.  I want to find that book:  Comin’ In Over the Rock: A Storyteller’s History of Cannon Beach.

The Inn’s non-glitzy website gets across some of the idiosyncratic feel of the place:

“The Wave Crest is a friendly inn house, which caters to the adult group, free of pets and smoking. We rent rooms, serve coffee, tea, and pastries, but do not serve full meals. We have a piano but no television. We have books, playng cards and other games should you feel the need to be entertained. We invite you to get away and connect with the natural rhythm of the ocean.  Proprietor and Private Home of Daryl “Hank” Johnson”

The only other hotel website that I’ve seen come near in simplicity is that of the Sylvia Beach Hotel.  Reviewing at these photos inspired me to do some research and I found this excellent article (in which you will learn that two of the Wave Crest’s rooms have private bathrooms after all!!  The article also temptingly reveals that the owner’s hope is to one day be serving meals out of that big kitchen…and that the inn was called by a previous owner “The Quill and Shuttle” and was a retreat for writers and weavers.  The original 1920s name is The Wave Crest.

Next, we conclude our tour with two more cottages.

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11 September, 2010

My heart ached when I realized in October of 2009 that my mom’s move into assisted living had completely driven the beloved annual tour of Cannon Beach cottages from my mind…so I determined to assuredly not miss it in 2010.  Ironically, we got to the Tolovana neighbourhood on tour day to find the last tickets had been sold.  It had never sold out before and I’d never fretted about the availability of tickets.  I almost wept…and went into the restroom to compose myself, then went back out and asked the ticket seller if she could possibly make us an exception, that we had driven all the way from Ilwaco, and she so kindly gave us a sort of extra pass.  She also told me it was because I was nice about it, that a woman who had yelled at her minutes earlier had been sent away with nothing.  Thank goodness we got to go.  I would have walked the neighbourhood till I saw a tour group and tried to hang on their coattails.

My mom had recently died.…And we were under the stress of waiting through a real estate deal ‘s slow progression on a double wide manufactured home on which we’d made an offer that very week.  It had a huge double lot but I was having difficulty procressing the idea of no longer living in a cute cottage, after a lifetime of vintage houses.  My identity was strongly wrapped up in our historic fishing shack and before that my Seattle Craftsman bungalow.

The cottages got to me emotionally more than usual (and I admit I generally tear up a bit at a really darling one).

I wrote nothing about the tour at the time and so cannot recreate much information about each individual cottage, so I hope the photos speak for themselves.  (The tour guide says no pictures, but all the hosts said photo taking was fine, and the tour-goers were all taking pictures left and right!) I can but divide the cottages by number and hope I don’t get mixed up regarding the transition between each.

One

The first stop had two cottages, one a tiny guest house in the back yard.  The feel of the main house was pleasant, but rather modern and did not especially thrill me.

main house bedrooms

The yard entranced me with its old fashioned circle of chairs…

a classic sit spot

And the shutters on the tiny cottage behind the main house filled me with joy.  (And made me wonder if such shutters could transform a double-wide into less of a rectangular box.  This was before I knew one must never, ever, “puncture the seal” of one’s double wide by drilling through the exterior…)

so beachy

beachy indeed

beachy sit spot reflected

rustic bathroom window, and bead board walls…true cottage even though the bath fixtures were too modernized

and ah, the view of the beachy sit spot…

Interlude

On the walk between the first and second cottage stop, we saw…

other cottages

a lovely garden

a birdhouse pole

a river rock wall

We then saw a perfect cottage complex for sale.  Of course, being in Cannon Beach, it would cost a fortune.  But what a compound: a cottage for me, a cottage for Allan, one for Stacey, one for Mary….What bliss that would be.

dreamy cottage compound

My eyes caught sight of a tower and I went down a side street and got as close a view as I could of its amazingness.  Oh, the deep deep woe I felt when on the 2011 tour, I learned that this very tower had been on the 2009 tour, the one I missed.

We missed it….argh

Even the lot behind the tower of mystery, while shady and unphotographable, had an air of enchantment, and we could have walked through it…in 2009.

mysterious tower cottage landscape

Even more painfully, I learned that we had missed in 2009 the chance to see the inside of June Kroft’s cottage; she’s a famous Cannon Beach gardener whose garden I once visited and adored.

two: Windshell Cottage

tiny Windshell Cottage

Just the porch of the Windshell Cottage looked so promising.

by the porch window

front door

Windshell Cottage became my favourite the moment I entered and saw the built in bookshelves.

inset bookshelves

A bunkroom provided plenty of room for guests.

bunkroom

The main bedroom had just about enough room for the bed, leading me to reflect on how much I love small, cozy spaces.  I wanted to take a nap there.

bedroom

The bathroom still had vintage features like the comfy clawfoot tub.

tub

In the kitchen, a built in wall seat and painted glass front cupboards…

kitchen

and a gorgeous room divider made from a long window….

room divider, kitchen side

living room side

living room and front door

Over the kitchen a skylight made the ceiling high and all sorts of fascinating objects were hung up there.

looking up…

fascinating skylight

up high

wabi-sabi skylight parasol

Everywhere, details….

letters

Lucky friends who got to use this cottage for the weekend!

Just outside the kitchen door we stepped out onto a deck.

the deck

the view

We chatted with the owners on the deck and when I mentioned how the sleeping rooms seemed so conducive to naps, they told us about an old sign still on the side of the cottage…

old sign

In faded letters, it reads Nap Trap.

Fascinating in every detail, Windshell remains one of my cottages of dreams.  Allan pointed out that on this particular tour, all the cottages were occupied only part time by the owners and the rest of the time rented out, so there was not the clutter of year round living that we experienced in our own tiny cottage.  Still, the cuteness and quaintness of this cottage made me wonder if I were utterly mad to think I could cottage-ify our possibly future double wide home.

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