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

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

NWFGS Quickie

One of the main reasons I go to the Northwest Flower and Garden Show, and one of the reasons I garden, is for the plants. I love plants. They don't talk back, or judge me, they just live (or die). Sometimes at the show, there's a garden or two that is plant-centric, like last year's showstopper garden by Riz Reyes (read about that garden here). That wasn't the case this year. So often the show gardens concentrate on hardscape, on the whole Outdoor Living thing that is so popular here on the West Coast. This was unfortunately true of many of this year's gardens. None of the plants featured were really cutting edge.

But there were a few interesting and intriguing plants and plant combos that I couldn't help noticing, including a few that paired the common with the more uncommon.

Astelia and black mondo grass
Red Anigozanthus (Kangaroo paw), which is not hardy here.

Sarracenias and red pansies

'Red Dragon' Persicaria and red-veined fern

Yucca 'Color Guard' and Tulip 'Monte Carlo'

Agave (parryi?) and Tulip 'Monte Carlo'

Yucca, Agave and red primroses

Enormous glass Sarracenia and real ones in the background (also a tiny already wilting Gunnera under the solar light and a Fatsia behind the log)

Various Narcissi, ferns and more Sarracenias

Why do you go to garden shows at this time of year? Is it to see the plants? To shop? To get inspired for another year of gardening? Maybe it's because you just love the madding crowd.


  1. All of the above (minus the crowd, which is why I love going on weekdays)...also I love to reconnect with my gardening friends. All things I'm missing this week!!! Love the black mondo and astelia combination, and HATE the primroses with the agave and yucca. What were they thinking?

  2. There are some unusual plant combinations there. I'm with Loree - I love the Astelia/mondo grass combo but hate the Yucca/primrose one. I know what you mean about losing the plants behind a focus on hardscape - that's prevalent at shows here too (the few we have). I hope you enjoyed yourself anyway!

  3. All of the above...okay perhaps less of the crowd.

  4. Not the crowd! but everything else you mentioned and maybe to get a new idea or two. Mostly it's an excuse to have lunch with Loree, you, and any other bloggger friends!.

  5. We are missing this show this year. We have been going since it started in Seattle. It used to be more about the plants but now it is more about the hardscapes and furnishings. We do love the display gardens, but what I like more is the shopping in the market place.

  6. I'm never sure why I go, but I know it when I see it...and it is, after all, something of a pre-spring ritual.

  7. Oh! I shouldn't look at these pictures! I'll be there on Friday (thought about Thursday, but decided to attend some Friday talks and changed the date).

  8. The glass Saracenia are really cool!

  9. I agree with some of the other comments, the primrose just doesn't work with the Agave. Some of the display gardens look interesting though and how nice to be able to get together with gardening blogger friends.


Gardening is a solitary activity. But blogging about it is a social phenomenon! I don't make money from my blog by advertising, or use it to drive customers to a business. If you liked my post, or my writing or photography, or even just one picture or turn of phrase, I'd love to hear from you. That's how I get paid.