Posts Tagged ‘Garden Conservancy Open Days’

bench, garden five

When we saw this bench at the entry to the next garden, we had a feeling we were in for something exciting.   A red door beckoned….Oh so similar to a door in my own garden and that Gearhart garden I’d so loved in summer of 2008.

through the red door, garden five

a richly planted corner…garden five

Walking alongside the house, with Tetrapanax papyrifer to the left, we approached a delightful dry creek bed with stepping stone bridge.  This brought us all to a halt as we admired the effect.

We love a creek bed; garden five

Note how the patio table has boots….

Note the boots on the patio table…

….and the cow had mysterious works inside…

…and that the garden tourists examined every detail.

Past the greenhouse patio

Past the greenhouse patio we worked our way through lushly planted beds to an enclosed vegetable garden.  I imagined how magical it must look at night with the big white lights glowing along the fence and arbour.

garden five, enclosed veg garden

I wonder how many deer are on Sauvie Island, and if they could be all sent away, or would they swim back across from the mainland?

Meandering our way further down through rich borders….

garden five

…we came to a field with mown paths.   That’s another thing I love.  When I used to mow lawns I liked nothing better than making paths through long grass.

An odd little tree sculpture, a platform, and a yoga mat attested that the meadows did get visited by the owners, although I would have found it hard to find time for stretching on a mat with all the garden to attend to.

mat in the meadow, garden five

Approaching the house from the other side we first came upon a scree garden.

scree garden

Surrounded by shrubs and roses…

garden five

…we came upon well thought out sunny open paths and a patio.

near the house, garden five

Right next to the house is another seating area with a view of the gardens.

This is the kind of care and detail that thrills me to the core.

On the covered porch, a plush lounging area:

covered porch

Might I add that I love the dusky purple colour of the house.

details….blue globe echoing Allium albopilosum

details…a line-up of bog plants

details…a repeat of blue

leaving the fifth garden…

We would have liked to stay longer and tried out the view from every seating arrangement, but another garden called, and we were still hoping to make it to Joy Creek Nursery in Scappoose…

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Allan and I simply HAD to go on the Garden Conservancy tour on Sauvie Island because I had accidentally brought my friend Sheila‘s one gallon Stewartia tree home from the Hardy Plant Society Study Weekend 2008.  Sauvie would be an excellent place for the two of us to rendezvous (and of course to shop at Cistus and Scappoose’s Joy Creek nurseries).

I worry a bit that if I am frank about my thoughts on some of the tour gardens, I might hurt the feelings of a garden owner who happens upon this.  It takes courage to let the public into one’s garden.   So I will continue my vague policy of raving about the ones I adore.  If there’s a garden that amazes and moves me, I tend to take so many photos that it gets its own journal entry.

I apologize that three years later I can’t flash my memory back to tell you the names of the gardens….

the first garden

The second garden had metal garden art throughout.

second garden

garden art in second garden

Sheila drew my attention to the huge trunks twined around the front arbour.

arbour trunks, second garden

Here’s a plant I keep trying and failing to grow, and still want:  Impatiens omeiana.

pretty sure the middle plant is impatiens omeiana…

The third garden’s owners provided a written tour guide with clever questions and clues to guide us through the landscape.  I think the house was new.  While big and grand, it gave a pleasant impression of homey farmhouse.  The wattle fencing around garden beds and compost pile charmed me.

garden three….house and wattle fences

wattle fenced bed and compost heap

The straw bale edged beds inspired me to do the same…an inspiration I still have not followed, but mean to.

straw bale beds, garden three

We all loved the straw bale summer house.  As we drew closer, we realized it had a built in stained glass window and its own little front garden bed!

straw bale summer house, garden three

Inside: the perfect summer get-away for a nap or a reading a good book.

straw room hideaway, garden three

While the third garden was more of a casual landscape than a garden we enjoyed its special touches.

mossy bench, garden three

tiny pond, garden three

I have to break my vague rule of no complaining already….because I really must point out that garden number four was simply not ready to be on the tour.  If a garden is this new and has not somehow been given some flow and cohesiveness, in my opinion it should wait a year or two to be on the tour.  Some perennials stuck in, or even sword ferns, would have helped.

The potential was great in garden four even though parts of it made me barking mad.  It had a rawly new pond landscape.  I would very much like to have seen it just a couple of years later.  I suppose garden tours do not often come to Sauvie and the chance to be on one was irresistable.  I also imagine the garden owners had some hesitation and I apologize, if they have happened upon this….

pond, garden four

One area with mature plantings gives an idea of how lovely the entire garden must be a few years later…

garden four in maturity

Gardens five and six are going to get their own entries.  Skipping ahead here to garden seven, we found another big farming landscape with a pretty garden just around the house.  I remember now…It was a peony farm, but at the time we visited, the peonies had already bloomed.  Those fields must be spectacular in flowering time.

harvested peony field, garden seven

Closer to the house a lovely area of roses and lavender and the gardens right by the house must have been a great pleasure to the owners….especially now that the hard work of peony harvest was over.

house and porch, garden seven

lovely arbours, garden seven

lavender beds, garden seven

…Next stop Joy Creek Nursery in Scappoose.  But for the blog reader, let’s flash back to the wonderful gardens number five and six first.

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