We started the day off with a visit to Merrifield's Garden Center, a large nursery in Gainesville, Virginia. They gave us a warm welcome with a big table full of food and drinks, but I had just eaten breakfast. Water is always welcome, of course. There was a huge gift area with lots of photo opportunities, which is where I concentrated my time. They did have a large area outside full of plants, but there didn't seem to be much point in shopping for plants that I would have to cart back home on a 6-hour plane trip. I just wasn't up for packing plants in my suitcase, plus -- honestly? -- we have the best (and probably the most) nurseries in the country right here in the PNW. I didn't think I'd find anything to buy that I couldn't get back home that was worth the trouble of packing, or bringing in my carry-on. (I'm sure I'm going to take heat for that...)
|Blogger Andrea, temporarily living in the D.C. area, poses with the heavily laden table o' food|
|The only item I wanted in this display was probably not for sale -- that retro woman's head|
|Words I took to heart, considering I was still coughing like an escapee from a tuberculosis ward|
Tammy's Garden Casa Mariposa
From Merrifield's we got back on the buses, and headed for the garden of blogger Tammy, who had organized the D.C. are Fling and had opened her garden as well. Tammy writes a blog called Casa Mariposa, which means House of Butterflies, and her garden is designed as a pollinator's paradise. According to the blurb that we received "Her cottage style garden is completely organic and packed with native plants and ornamentals that attract and support wildlife. All annuals that attract pollinators are grown from seed during the winter."
|Tammy greeted us at the door -- no, she isn't saluting, but shading her eyes from the sun|
|Like my own garden, Echinacea is a mainstay|
|I love how some of the Rudbeckia flowers have a rust red center that coordinates with the red daylily next to it -- a nice combo, whether planned or a happy accident|
We were all told to ask Tammy about her "ugly arbor" but everyone seemed to be too intrigued with shooting a good photo of this Clematis bloom hanging just above the gate attached to the arbor. There was actually a waiting line of people, backed up to get a shot.
|I took my photo as quickly as possible, which is why the doorknob is in focus and the flower isn't|
|Tammy's back garden was chock-full of great pollinator plants|
|Charming back steps|
|Towards the back, a shady area|
|Another nice daylily combo|
|I thought the throat of this daylily coordinated well with the Echinacea|
|Tammy's garden had lots of nice decorative touches, like this empty picture frame|
|One perfect Dahlia|
|Nearby, a grumpy-looking cardinal sat in a tree, probably waiting for all these noisy invaders to vacate his favorite habitat|
Our third stop on Day Three was the garden of landscape designer Linda Hostetler. "Her incredible garden started with poison ivy and three dead cherry trees and has become an exuberant red and blue playground threaded with vignettes created by a collector gone mad. She and her husband dug a 90' stream and a 16X24 foot pond for their resident amphibians."
I loved this garden, it made me glad I got out of bed that morning.
|It was hard to get a good shot of the front garden, this is just a small part of it|
|Loved this face in the bed surrounded by succulents that create the illusion of hair|
|Begonia grandis was used extensively|
|This small pond and stepladder-style waterfall was part of a side garden/patio|
|This large heavily decorated shed/garden structure was beside the pond|
As you continued past the shed, you entered the large back garden, which seemed to go on and on.
|The garden was full of those royal blue accents|
|This plant -- Curcuma -- was the subject of much Googling to see if it might be hardy in the PNW|
|A stone spiral/labyrinth with a tulip-shaped pot in the center was a prominent feature|
|There was a second, larger, similar pot further in the garden|
|More blue accents and enormous planting beds and gravel paths|
|Some funky garden art|
|A small portion of the 90' stream, beautifully planted with Hostas and Hakone grass|
|Another part of the stream|
|And the pond, where frogs abounded|
There have been quite a few posts about the Day Two gardens by bloggers who attended the Fling. If you're interested, here are a few about some of the gardens that seemed interesting.
I missed some nice gardens, but I really needed that day off.