Friday, March 19, 2010

Pink Flowers

Paeonia suffruticosa 'Yoshinogawa' May 2009

Allium unifolium June 2009

Erigeron glaucus 'Sea Breeze' June 2009

Penstemon x mexicali 'Red Rocks' June 2009

Weigela florida 'Variegata' May 2009

Pink isn’t just for little girls.  Many pink flowers have a subtle elegance.  Pink is almost always delightful.  The range of shades of pink is amazing.  There is nothing more beautiful than Paeonia suffruticosa in full bloom.  (Be advised that they are often described as red, which is utterly false.)  Pink Poppies & Camellia are also quite lovely.  Use pink with red for a warm glow.  Pink with blue & purple is very rich.  Pink with yellow & especially orange is very striking.  Pink with white is very soothing.  Unless you are an absolute purist, I think Weigela florida 'Variegata' is a must for a white garden.  Pink blends well in a red garden, lends excitement to a yellow garden & adds a pleasing contrast to a blue garden.  Any garden looks pretty in pink.

Cercis canadensis (Eastern Redbud)
Cornus kousa ‘Satomi’ (Korean Dogwood)
Halesia carolina ‘Rosea’
Lagerstroemia indica ‘Tuskegee’ (Crape Myrtle)
Magnolia x soulangeana ‘Pink Suberba’
Malus ‘Strawberry Parfait’ (Crabapple)
Prunus serrulata (Flowering Cherry)

Abelia x grandiflora ‘Edward Goucher’
Calluna vulgaris ‘County Wicklow’ (Heather)
Camellia japonica or sasanqua
Cistus skanbergii (Pink Rockrose)
Daphne odora
Deutzia x elegantissima ‘Rosealind’
Erica carnea ‘Springwood Pink’ (Heath)
Escallonia ‘Jubilee’
Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Forever Pink’
Kalmia latifolia ‘Olympic Fire’ (Mountain Laurel)
Kolkwitzia amabilis (Beauty Bush)
Paeonia suffruticosa (Tree Peony)
Pieris ‘Valley Valentine’ (Lily of the Valley Shrub)
Rhododendron ‘Pink Pearl’ or ‘Yaku Princess’
Ribes sanguineum (Flowering Currant)
Rosa ‘Queen Elizabeth’ (Grandiflora Rose)
Weigela florida 'Variegata'

Allium unifolium
Amaryllis belladonna (Naked Lady)
Anemone x hybrida
Astilbe x arendsii ‘Rheinland’ (Ostrich Plume)
Bergenia crassifolia
Clematis integrifolia ‘Hanajima’
Darmera peltata
Dierama pulcherrimum (Fairywand)
Dicentra formosa or spectabilis (Bleeding Heart)
Erigeron glaucus 'Sea Breeze'
Gaura lindheimeri
Geranium sanguineum (Bloody Cranesbill)
Hemerocallis ‘Fairy Tale Pink’ or ‘Lullaby Baby’
Hyacinthus orientalis ‘Pink Pearl’
Lilium ‘Chianti’ (Asiatic Lily)
Lychnis coronaria (Crown Pink)
Nerine bowdenii
Monarda x didyma ‘Coral Reef’ (Beebalm)
Paeonia ‘Bowl of Beauty’ or ‘Flame’ (Peony)
Papaver orientale ‘Little Dancing Girl’ (Oriental Poppy)
Penstemon x mexicali 'Red Rocks'
Primula vialii
Sedum ‘Brilliant’
Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ears)
Tradescantia ‘Pink Chablis’
Tulipa ‘Angelique’ or 'Menton' (Tulip)

Groundcovers & Trailers
Arctostaphylos uva-ursi ‘Vancouver Jade’ (Kinnikinnick)
Armeria maritima (Thrift)
Cyclamen hederifolium
Fragaria frel ‘Pink Panda’
Lamium maculatum
Phlox subulata (Moss Pink)
Sedum spurium
Thymus ‘Pink Chintz’ or serpyllum (Creeping Thyme)

Friday, March 12, 2010

Lake Washington Boulevard

 Mt Baker Rowing & Sailing Center June 2009

Mt Baker Rowing & Sailing Center June 2009

 Lake Washington June 2009

 Lake Washington Blvd June 2009

Mt Baker Beach June 2009

Lake Washington Boulevard in Seattle is a great place to walk along Lake Washington.  There are 3.5 miles of walkway from the lower end of Colman Park in Mt Baker south to Seward Park.  The northernmost stretch is quite nice.  You can park at Stan Sayre’s Memorial Park near the Mt Baker Rowing & Sailing Center.  If the doors are open,  you can look inside the boat houses.  You are mostly like to see crews & sailboats near the center in the mornings.  Or you can park at the lower end of Colman Park near Mt Baker Beach.  Be sure to detour into Mt Baker Park to see the pools & landscaping along the stream.  There is a pagoda lantern in Mt Baker Park near Lake Washington Blvd that was presented to Seattle by her sister city of Kobe in 1912.  It was removed & hidden away to prevent vandalism during WW2.  You can walk out on the pier at Mt Baker Beach, or swim to the raft.  The walk between Colman Park & Stan Sayres Memorial Park is mostly quiet lake shore.  But there is a pier midway where you might see people fishing.  It should take about 1 hour to walk the 1.5 miles (3 miles total) in both directions.  Click here to read about more parks along Lake Washington Boulevard.

Friday, March 5, 2010

In the Cascadia Garden

 The beds are densely planted with perennials.  May 2009

 There is shrubbery. May 2009

There is a lot of color. June 2009

There is a xeric garden. August 2008

There are often clouds. October 2008

You can see the houses across the street, for now. December 2008

You can see Lake Washington, Mercer Island & the Cascade Mountains. March 2009

My garden, the Cascadia Garden, sits on top of Cascadia Ridge in the Mt Baker neighborhood of the city of Seattle.  The city of Seattle rests between 2 bodies of water: Puget Sound & Lake Washington.  Cascadia Ridge is much closer to Lake Washington than to Puget Sound: a substantial part of the Salish Sea & a very small part of the Pacific Ocean.  The Salish Sea is set apart from the Pacific by the Olympic Peninsula in the state of Washington & Vancouver Island in the province of British Columbia. The dense, wet clouds of the Pacific Ocean travel as far as the Cascade Mountains, near the Salish Sea & not very far from the ocean.  East of the Cascades lies the desert of the Columbia Basin.  The moist, temperate climate of Seattle extends south to northern California, north to southwestern Alaska.  The Pacific Northwest Coast from San Francisco Bay to Cook Inlet shares a flora dominated by coniferous forest

The central portion, west of the Cascade Mountains, is called Cascadia.  The climate is cool & wet from fall to spring, warm & dry in summer.  The Olympic Mountains block Seattle from much of the Pacific rainfall.  Seattle is drier than the Atlantic coast of North America & northern Europe.  It lies near the latitude of Paris & Munich, but is cooler in summer, warmer in winter. In this tiny piece of the vast world, I grow plants from the Pacific Northwest, eastern North America, Europe, Asia, few from Chile, from New Zealand mostly Hebe, a few Callistemon from Australia & not very many perennials from South Africa: Agapanthus, Crocosmia, Eucomis & Kniphofia. The first exotic plants came to Cascadia from Europe with the American settlers.  Ilex aquifolium & Hedera helix remain a problem.  Japanese plants & garden design became popular in the 20th century, after Japanese immigration.  Native plants are seldom seen except in natural areas.  Many of the native plants in the Cascadia Garden came from the logged forest land of my grandparents on Phantom Lake near Lake Sammamish.  From the original homesteader, they bought 60 acres of stumps with a bog & a bit of shore on a tiny lake. 

The original people of Cascadia were the Coast Salish, in Seattle the Duwamish.  The Duwamish River flows through Seattle to Puget Sound.  The Coast Salish people of Puget Sound lived in long wooden houses shared by many.  It is said that all the Suquamish lived in Old Man House, more than 600 feet long.  They collected plant foods from the forest, salmon from the rivers & shell fish from the margins of Salish Sea. Seattle was chief of the Duwamish & Suquamish peoples.  There was a small Duwamish village on Lake Washington near Seward Park.  An amazing forest grows there.  It has survived almost untouched.  Near towering Pseudotsuga menziesii & Thuja plicata, grow Quercus garryana, likely planted by the Duwamish as a source of acorns.  When I walk through that forest, I know the ground where I garden was once just the same.