Nerd Night in Raleigh

I had a blast last week speaking on horticultural diversity at Raleigh’s Nerd Night…held at the Big Boss Brewery. I’ll admit to being skeptical when committing to speak in an un-air conditioned beer warehouse in late June…an obviously non-horticultural venue. The group of about 125 people…mostly Gen X – millenials was incredibly entheusiatic with great questions that continued well into the night. I hope you’ll check out the Nerd Night events, now held in over 100 cities. Special thanks to NCSU hort grad Alice Hinman of Raleighs’ bee enhancement program, Apiopolis, for the inviation to speak, Eric Self, the Nerd Night organizer, and my college classmate and fellow boomer, Debbie Hamrick for the photos.

Guess who is visiting for Summer Open Nursery and Garden???

Yes, it's our first flowering of Amorphophallus titanum...the Titan Arum.  The scheduled release date is July 6, 2018, so tell all your friends and come join us. We will continue to update the progress in case the date of the opening night performance changes. June 22 with our Taxonomist, Zac Hill 6.25.2018...not sure what it's been eating over the weekend, but darn, it's put on some weight and height...40" tall so far. We probably would have flowered one sooner, but back in winter 2005, we heard news that the heat went out in the UNC Charlotte Botanical Garden greenhouses, killing their flowering-size Amorphophallus titanum, so we donated out largest specimen as a replacement.  Here is our visit to see "Bella" ready to flower in 2007.    Read more [...]

Chelsea Gardens

Chelsea is always a sell out, so get your tickets early.   Interesting 3D garden Meatball Garden hmmm   A new use for driftwood Dyslexis hopscotch paving patterns Larger than life cattails Run for the metal roses No one's going to steel this bull Plants that never die Modernist garden A new take on stained glass Crevice fountains Not sure how they did this, but it's pretty amazing.   About face... If it looks like a nymph and moves like a nymph.... Read more [...]

UK Travels

Just back from a speaking gig in the UK and wanted to share some images from the trip. While there, we were able to visit the Chelsea Garden Show for the first time, and here are some of the amazing displays of horticultural perfection. Alliums Chrysanthemums Fuchsias Lupines Rebutias Sarracenias Lillies Gladiolus Narcissus   Agapanthus Hellebores - all forced from Ashwood Nurseries And looks who's manning the Ashwood booth...Pine Knot's Dick Tyler! Read more [...]

Flowering Pitchers

Although most folks grow our native pitcher plants for the foliage (pitchers), we think the flowers are pretty darn incredible.  Here are a couple of the earliest flowers species from the garden yesterday. 

Sarracenia flava putting on an incredible show.

The lovely pink-flowered Sarracenia rosea stays close to the ground, but what a color.

Amsonia ‘Storm Cloud’ before and after

In 2016, we introduced Amsonia ‘Storm Cloud‘ in conjunction with our friend Hans Hansen of Walters Gardens. Above is the same plant when we discovered by a stream, growing in deep shade in Central Alabama. What a star it has become, evidenced by the photo below.

Amsonia ‘Storm Cloud’ @ Juniper Level Botanic Garden

Plant Geek Visitors

Another great weekend in the garden, highlighted by a visit from several of our extended plant family…Carl Schoenfeld and Wade Roitsch of the former Yucca Do, Hans Hansen of Walters Gardens (back), and yours truly on the right. It’s been about seven years since we were able able to get together.  Carl is raising cattle (and plants) at his ranch in Argentina, and Wade is doing the same in Texas. Thanks to John Walters for snapping the photo. 

Double Your Pleasure

Flowering in the woodland garden this week is the diminutive Anemonella ‘Schoaf’s Double’…so very cute. Hardiness is Zone 4a-8b. 

We’re also working with a new double form that our research horticulturist, Jeremy Schmidt found on a botanizing trip in Tennessee. Here it is this week in the garden. 

Sweet as a Candy Striper

Epimedium ‘Candy Striper’ is our 2011 introduction, but it took us this long to take a decent photo. Epimediums are particularly challenging to photograph since they don’t hold all their flowers in a single plane. So, would anyone buy it based on this image?  If so, we’d love to offer it again.  Hardiness Zone 5a-8b.

Here’s a new image of Epimedium ‘Domino’ from the garden this week…isn’t that amazing! You can’t go wrong with this gem.