Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Randy Brown’

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Music in the Gardens Tour, Long Beach Peninsula

a benefit for the Water Music Festival

Ed Strange Garden

photo

Ed was not sure how “giant hebe” got put in the garden description and asked me to change it on the Facebook page to “coral bark maple”, as he did not feel a giant hebe was that much to celebrate.  Hebes are a fine plant, though.

ed

happy tour guests

happy tour guests

west side of driveway

west side of driveway

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

 

The small home sits on a small lot in the Tides West neighbourhood.

The small home sits on a small lot in the Tides West neighbourhood.

As we approached the garden, who should we meet but our good friend Kathleen!

Kathleen and I in plant discussion

Kathleen and I in plant discussion  (Allan’s photo)

Ed sees us!

Ed sees us!  (Allan’s photo)

Kathleen was touring in a different direction than us, so we would not see her again till later at dinner.

to the east of the driveway

to the east of the driveway

a woodsy garden

a woodsy garden

photo by Kathleen Shaw

photo by Kathleen Shaw

east side of the front porch

east side of the front porch and deck

Our dear friend Ed and guests.

Our dear friend Ed and guests.

I was thrilled to see Randy Brown, who had been the musician for our garden tour in 2012.

porch2

Randy Brown

Randy Brown

He comes all the way from his new home in McMinnville, Oregon, to play for Music in the Gardens.

At our garden, he made up a delightful song about the colourfulness of our garden and a funny song about Allan’s skilled helpfulness.  (You can listen to the latter song on Youtube, here.)  At Ed’s garden, he made up a song right on the spot about how we make the Peninsula a more beautiful place.  It was extraordinarily cheering!

That's Ed's petrified wood collection on display in front of Randy's sit spot.

That’s Ed’s petrified wood collection on display in front of Randy’s sit spot.

 

being serenaded with a complimentary song!

being serenaded with a complimentary song!

view from the porch

view from the porch

Garden touring is such a happy thing.  (Being serenaded just adds to the joy.)

Garden touring is such a happy thing. (Being serenaded just adds to the joy.)  (Allan’s photo)

on the porch

on the porch

cactus

Gunnera

Gunnera with Sedum ‘Cape Blanco’ “stepping stones”

photo by Kathleen Shaw

photo by Kathleen Shaw

straight east of the porch

straight east of the porch

The guest looking around the side of the garage was viewing Ed’s “ladies in waiting” (unplanted plants) area and she said “Your work area looks better than my garden does!”

southwest corner of garage, where one enters the walkway between garage and house

southwest corner of garage, where one enters the walkway between garage and house

photo

the east wall of the house

the east wall of the house

looking back at the porch (east side of house)

looking back at the porch (east side of house)

As with our manufactured home, Ed would know that with a manufactured home one must NEVER NEVER “puncture the seal” or internal havoc will occur.  So one cannot hang any sort of decoration on the outside walls.

Ed’s garage had a perfect guest area in the back, and on tour day he had a feast laid out, catered by the famous Nanci and Jimella’s Market Café.

delicious!

delicious!

complete with a friend filling in as bartender!

complete with a friend filling in as bartender!

at the back of the garage/house passageway

at the back of the garage/house passageway

coyotes

the coral bark maple in the back yard

the coral bark maple in the back yard

behind the garage

behind the garage, perfectly NOT slug-eaten hostas

behindgarage2

the ferny southeast corner of the back garden

the ferny southeast corner of the back garden

east end of back garden

east end of back garden

On the east side of the garage, here is the work area that was being admired by a tour guest earlier.

On the east side of the garage, here is the work area that was being admired by a tour guest earlier.

behind the house

behind the house

looking back at the passageway between garage and house

looking back at the passageway between garage and house

west wall of garage

west wall of garage

Allan's photo

Allan’s photo

Ed and tour guests

Ed and tour guests

We would love to have hung around for much longer schmoozing with Ed and listening to Randy’s song stylings, but we had four more gardens to see.

Next, we return to the Willapa Bay side of the Peninsula.

 

 

 

 

Read Full Post »

July 20, 2013

from the program:  This large meadow garden on the dunes of a Butterfly Shores estate showcases the many plants that thrive in full exposure to salt, wind and winter storms.  As you wander through the meadow, notice the garden art, collected driftwood planters and sculpture, pond and fountain.  The tall fence around the back gardens protects artful bird feeders from bears, raised-bed vegetables from deer and encloses a sheltered patio.  This remarkable garden design was planted and maintained  by local gardener Diana Canto.

A few years ago, the owner of this property asked me if we would create a garden for her.  We were simply too busy, so I referred her to local gardener Diana Canto, whose own garden I had admired.  Here is the wonderful landscape that Diana has created in front (west) of the house.

side

Bristol garden

Bristol garden

There is only one house and dune grass between this garden and the beach.

looking from the garden to the west on a pre-tour visit.

looking from the garden to the west on a pre-tour visit.

house

garden

Everything in this garden is exposed to salt wind, storms, and I am sure to deer.

beachy

beachy

daisies and ornamental grasses

daisies and ornamental grasses

detail, taken on a rainy pre-tour day in late June

detail, taken on a rainy pre-tour day in late June

also on pre-tour day

also on pre-tour day

in late June

in late June

on that rainy pre-tour day

on that rainy pre-tour day

 

in the west (front Garden), Deb sets up for a photo

in the west (front Garden), Deb sets up for a photo

It was such enormous fun touring with Debbie and Sheila.  Kathleen was touring from north to south so we did not connect with her till the end.

Perovskia (Russian Sage)

Perovskia (Russian Sage)

This is one of the prettiest Perovskias I have ever seen.

This is one of the prettiest Perovskias I have ever seen.

grasses

looking west

looking west

The house across the road is attractive indeed and is said to be built to be tsunami safe.

daisies

daisies, Allan’s photo

another daisy photo by Allan

another daisy photo by Allan

beds around the house

beds around the house

garden confab by the porch.  Left: Diana Canto, who designed the garden, and in the center, Phil, spouse of tour organizer Nancy.

garden confab by the porch. Left: Diana Canto, who designed the garden, and in the center, Phil, spouse of tour organizer Nancy and a stanch supporter of the garden tour.

a serious discussion

a serious discussion

plants by the foundation and porch steps

plants by the foundation and porch steps

lovely built in porch planters, taken late June

lovely built in porch planters, taken late June

on tour day

on tour day

garden next to porch

garden next to porch

from the porch looking west

from the porch looking west

To the north side of the front garden, a path leads into the fenced back garden.

to the back

to the back

garden near the arch path

garden near the arch path

Inside the back yard, a raised bed grows edibles.

veg

veg

back garden, taken in late June

back garden, taken in late June

on tour day

on tour day

Kathleen Shaw's photo of the north side of the back garden

Kathleen Shaw’s photo of the north side of the back garden

Our friend Kathleen Sayce's view of the back garden

Our friend Kathleen Sayce’s view of the back garden

On the porch, I greeted singer Randy Brown, the musician for this garden, who last year was the musician for our garden on the tour.  I was hoping we would be at the Bristol garden during one of his sets.

Randy Brown

Randy Brown

We reminisced for a little while; he said, “Your garden was industrial strength colour therapy!  Vietnam vets with PTSD should go there to heal.”  He would have loved Jo’s garden!

Allan's photo of Randy

Allan’s photo of Randy

Randy and his drummer.  He excels at making up songs about the moment.

Randy and his drummer. He excels at making up songs about the moment.

from the porch, looking west

from the porch, looking west

The garden tour confab had gotten bigger.  I joined it just before we left, and then Sheila and Debbie and Allan were waiting for me, after I had tried to keep them on schedule up til then!

on the back patio, a sheltered spot from wind

on the back patio, a sheltered spot from wind

The patio is on the east side of the house.

The patio is on the east side of the house.

delicious refreshments

delicious refreshments

yummy

yummy

fire circle

fire circle

patio

patio

Sheila taking a photo

Sheila taking a photo, Deb probably thinking about taking a photo

I am sure I would have snagged some Sheila photos for this blog, but she is having computer problems and has not been able to process hers yet.  Debbie’s photos will likely appear on her own Rainyside website.  In fact, it is on the Rainyside and other gardens forums that Sheila and I originally “met” even thought at the time, we both lived on the Long Beach Peninsula.

I should add that this house and property is for sale as of July 2013.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read Full Post »

Belly Dance sign

Belly Dance sign

Twice in August I visited the lavender farm just over the hill to the east of the town of Ilwaco.  The first was a fairy tale tea party whose story is told in this album on the Olde Towne Trading Post page. The second occasion was in the evening of the Beach Belly Dance Festival, an annual event.

Booths selling colourful clothing and belly dance jewelry and coin belts were set up all around the lower level of the farm and a stage and dancers wandered through the grounds  or lounged on Persian carpets and pillows between performances.

magic carpets

magic carpets

dancers

dancers

between performances

between performances

the stage

the stage

We had missed most of the performances; Jenna had to run her shop during the day and I had attended the edible garden tour…but we were in time for a lovely fairy dance.  The fairy women pulled Jenna’s husband Don and local guitarist Randy Brown (who had played music for our own garden tour) onto the stage and enchanted them.

fairy dance

fairy dance

enchantment

enchantment

fairy dance

fairy dance

Between sets, Randy Brown and Friend performed.

Between sets, Randy Brown and Friend performed.

dancers' art class

dancers’ art class

Jenna’s spouse, artist Don Nisbett, gave a class in caricature drawing after the fairy dance, using as his model Janine, a very French lady from Long Beach who always dresses in elegant Parisian fashion.

Don and Janine

Don and Janine

In the outdoor kitchen, the big woodfired oven was in play making delicious pizzas to order…all included in the moderate entry fee to the festival.

pizza chef

pizza chef

pizza

pizza

the stove oven chimney

the stove oven chimney

stone oven chimney

stone oven chimney

As dusk fell, a troupe of drummers and fire eaters arrived.  The crowd gathered around the driveway to keep the flames away from the garden, white picket fences, and booths!

drummers

drummers

fire eater

fire eater

cloud of fire

cloud of fire

wheel of fire

wheel of fire

fountain of fire

fountain of fire

breath of fire

breath of fire

You can bet that I have every intention of attending this amazing festival in 2013!

Read Full Post »

first would-be guests

first would-be guests

The day before our tour day, rain and wind had me quite worried.  Of course we spent all day working on our garden despite the weather.

I had told the tour organizer that I wanted to be on the tour either this year or in ten years.  Because it is impressive to say “This garden is only one and a half years old” and demonstrate how quickly a garden can be created.  It would not be so impressive as a NEW garden after two and a half years.

Tour day dawned hot and lovely and two guests were already outside the gate by 8 AM.

refreshments

refreshments

One of the most fun things this year had been that my friends and ALMOST gardening neighbours down the street (sadly not RIGHT next door) were also on tour.  Judy and I had many discussions regarding what food to serve, as neither of us wanted to COOK anything, but we did want the guests to feel welcome.  It is not required to put out food, but we had heard another garden was offering sushi, and felt we, on the flatlands, had to make an effort.  (In a later post, you will get to tour her garden as well.)   We had juice in a jug and bottled of water in a wheelbarrow full of ice.

Allan and I served several kinds of cookies, including some made by our dear next door neighbour, Nora, and his favourite, red licorice. A friend commented that the declassé red licorice was perfect for the working class Ilwaco flatlands.  Above left,  you can see the first group of tour goers goggling over Allan’s lovely fern garden. All told, we had about 500 guests.

view from my screened window

view from my screened window as the tour begins

Randy Brown

Randy Brown

Because the tour is a benefit for Water Music Festival, each garden gets a musician. We were fortunate to be assigned Randy Brown, a man with a delightful sense of humour and winning personality.  Most of the time he used the patio as his stage but he did a bit of musical wandering in the garden.  Allan made a video of him improvising a garden song…You can watch it here.

Guests began to pour in on the dot of ten a.m. and kept a steady flow all day.

patio stage

patio stage

I did not take many photos because the plant questions kept me hopping all day long.  In fact, I did so much talking in the hot sun that my lips got sunburned.  I realized later that most of the time when I am outside I am looking down at plants, not up at people.

Having so many appreciative gardeners walking through gave us much joy, and I was thrilled when many who had worked their way from north on the Peninsula to south, our being their last garden, said that ours was their favourite.

garden photographer

garden photographer

In fact, we heard several times, as did our friends Judy and Tom down the street in their tour garden, that Ilwaco ruled the tour and that Lake Street was the best.  It was especially gratifying because every other garden except for mine and Allan’s and Judy and Tom’s had a staff, or at least a paid gardener or friends helping out.  Ours were the only two that were solely and completely created and cared for by the owners.  And to further toot our own horns, Tom was going through chemo every other week while preparing for the tour (he’s fine now!) and Allan and I were also working full time.

I would love to see the many photos that I observed being taken.  I did get a few photos from friends…and would like more.

One particular thrill was having a guest introduce herself as garden celebrity Jolly Butler, someone who actually knows my ultimate gardening mentor-from-afar, Ann Lovejoy, whose lectures originally inspired my fulltime devotion to horticulture.  It had become clear to me after some pondering that the only right name for my garden boat was the “Ann Lovejoy”.

"Plant Vessel" Ann Lovejoy

l will make another post following this one with more details of the garden.  I like to go all out for a garden tour with every inch of the garden weeded (which is why I am always amazed when I tour a garden that has weedy patches).  Naturally, one of the first guests pointed out to me a three foot tall dwarf fireweed that I had missed, and as I walked around I did see other flaws.  I put out a photo of my mom in her garden, and one of my grandmother, and a pile of my favourite gardening books.  A friend got a photo showing the photo of my mother and, in the background on the right, a guest leafing through one of my favourite gardening book inspirations, Shocking Beauty by Thomas Hobbs.

photo by Kathleen Sayce

photo by Kathleen Sayce

All day long, I talked plants, and talked and talked…

tour day

guests

more talking

more talking

and talked…and talked…and talked…  My face blindness hampered me from recognizing people out of context, so between that and the large number of people, by the end of the day I had only a vague idea of which local people had actually visited.  I know that some good friends came through and (while I would have recognized them), I was so busy I did not even see them.

People checked out the entire garden from front to back, so all that weeding had been quite worthwhile.  In my next entries, I’ll take you on a tour  throughout the whole garden as it looked its absolute best.

from my window

from my window

and again a window view

and again a window view

south end of sunny borders

south end of sunny borders

center path

center path

up the west side path

up the west side path

exploring the bogsy wood

exploring the bogsy wood

Join me in my next blog entries for a walk through of the garden in its moment of perfection.  We gardeners all know that perfection in a garden is fleeting but oh so satisfactory.  Following that, I will share the other featured gardens which I visited on a pre- and post-tour day.

Read Full Post »