Don't be fooled. Inside this thin coating of sweetness is a fiery core of total insanity.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden Plant Sale

I spent all of last week cleaning out a bed in the garden instead of blogging, so my blog lay fallow for a week. The plant sale at the Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden was a couple of weekends ago now, but here's what I saw. It's one of the last sales of the season (probably the very, very last is coming up at Heronswood on May 12 and 13).

The Rhododendron Garden plant sale always has plenty of great vendors and it's spread out nicely in a large parking lot. Even though it might attract lots of gardeners, it's not wall-to-wall with so many people that you can't breathe. And fortunately, although it was a comfortably cool day, it wasn't raining.

Cunninghamia lanceolata reminds me of Wollemia -- I'm intrigued, but a Google search shows it gets huge and I don't have the room for it

This Persicaria looks a bit like 'Purple Fantasy' to me -- the green a bit more limey and the purple splotch not quite so big and deep

I found myself drawn to all the bronzey leaves

I have chocolate Eupatorium already growing in the garden, but it needs to be moved

I've tried growing this plant many times, but it seldom returns for me

The sale took place just as Arisamea sikokianum was at its peak

Such wonderful stripes! I bought two at the Northwest Flower and Garden Show, but I've decided I need more, in fact, I'd like a whole forest full, but that could get expensive

Yummy Podophyllum

These leaves were gigantic!

A sweet variegated Disporum

An enormous 'Spotty Dotty'

Sinopanax formosanus at the Far Reaches table -- crikey, it was expensive

You could get Japanese maples at the sale too

And flowering Rhodies -- or is that an Azalea, I can never tell the diffference

I was happy to find Asplenium trichomanes/maidenhair spleenwort at the Hardy Fern Foundation for my fern table, which is finally in progress

Prism Gardens Nursery was selling miniature Hostas, aren't they cute?

There were a couple of vendors of interesting garden art at the sale too.

Here's the work of Connie Rae Munford of Window Lit Fused Glass Art Studio. Most of the art that she brought was on stakes for exhibiting in beds or pots.

I leaned toward liking the colors in the last two, but there was just a little too much pink, I might have gone for it with a bit of black or maybe purple thrown in.

Please check out Connie Rae's website for many more examples of her garden art. The lantern with cherry blossoms is especially nice.

Another artist exhibiting at the sale was Julie Haun of Original Stone Works. She creates garden art, coasters, and accent tiles using stone, tile, marble, ceramic, porcelain, glass, metal, and wood.

This falcon drew my eye

And I liked this yin-yang made with Pacific salmon instead of the traditional carp

You can check out her website here.

And now I'm sure you want to know what I bought, right? Well, I went outside and took pictures. Just for you.

This tiny Hosta is called Ki nakafu otome -- and it's supposed to stay really small, so it's slated for my fern table

Disporum smilacinum 'Ki-no-tsukasa' which also may end up in the fern table

When I picked up this Podophyllum from Far Reaches Farm, the leaf was pristine, I managed to catch it in the shade cover of my car when I pulled it back to try to protect the plants -- D'oh!

And because I failed to read the tag I bought another of that same Disporum from Far Reaches -- but in my defense, it looks rather different, with bigger leaves

Maidenhair spleenwort from the Hardy Fern Foundation -- also a candidate for the fern table

Microbiota decussata from the Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden

Schefflera fengii from the Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden

Another post to come about my visit to the garden itself.


  1. This may be the first year we missed this sale. Didn't even know it was happening. I guess we are out of the loop, or just doing other stuff.
    Looks like you had a good time and came home with great plants.

  2. I wanted to go to this so bad! Is this the one in Federal Way? I would love to visit their display gardens before the rhododendron season is over. It looks like you got some great plants!

  3. Nice haul! I missed the sale this year but it's just as well as I might have brought home more plants. I like the addition of garden art this year!

  4. With all the wonderful spring plant sales you have, it's amazing you can actually get any work done in the garden! Nice finds one and all but I'm particularly envious of that Disporum 'Ki-no-tsukasa'.

  5. Hmm, love both of your variegated Disporum, most excellent! Have to admit I was seriously questioning the whole idea of miniature Hosta, until you mentioned a fern table. Now that makes sense!

  6. Nice haul! Still hard to come across Sinopanax here. Apparently it's a diva of a plant so perhaps explains the price tag, for now anyway.

  7. I love Microbiota. I've got three of them in the garden and they sailed right though our miserable winter without a problem. You got a nice haul. That variegated Disporum is a winner.

  8. That's a fun sale, but I expected to see more Rhododendrons. My parents had some huge rhodies in their garden when I grew up near NYC.


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