Agave Mountain Man – the big moment

We posted this a few weeks ago as our Agave ‘Mountain Man’ (A. gentryi x montana) prepared to open. We’ll, the big moment is here…below are a few shot from today.

The seed were wild-collected in Mexico in the late 1990s by our friends at Yucca Do, and our seedling was planted in May 2000, so it took 17 years to flower.  Fingers crossed for good seed set, and fortunately we have many more agaves in flower (and a tall ladder) to help the process. 

Jobs at PDN and JLBG

Nursery Intern

Plant Delights Nursery is seeking a driven and energetic student or recent graduate who is interested in working for a world-renowned mail order nursery in Raleigh, NC.  Come learn with us as we rotate you through each of the nursery departments, and our through our stunning botanic garden.  You will gain experience in plant identification, propagation, IPM, shipping, nursery maintenance, facilities upkeep, and face-to-face sales. 

Our goal and our passion is to be one of the most unique botanic gardens in the world. In our quest for new plants, we have taken over 80 botanical expeditions and sponsored many more, both domestic and global, since 1994. We also work closely with the top plant explorers and breeders around the world to grow and evaluate the best in new ornamental plants. Few, if any, plant nurseries or botanic gardens can match the diversity of our plant collections, which currently numbers over 22,000 taxa, of which many have original provenance data.

Qualified candidates for our internship programs must have a good work ethic, a friendly personality, and be able to work well with others. Candidates must be able to pay acute attention to detail while working at a quick pace. We are seeking a team player who enjoys working in a friendly and fast-paced environment. Please send resumes with cover letters of interest with reasons why you are the ideal candidate to keith@jlbg.org

Position Classification: Hourly (Non-Exempt) Seasonal 

Program Details: 

  • Education-focused program designed to expose interested students to all aspects of operations in a truly unique mail-order retail nursery
  • Exposure to on-site sales during our Summer Open Nursery and Garden
  • Hands on experience tending to plants in the nursery and during rotation through the garden and research areas
  • Networking opportunities with staff, volunteers, and visitors to a noteworthy horticultural establishment
  • Experience the rush of being part of a team dedicated to the mission of PDN and JLBG 

Grounds and Garden Assistant

Plant Delights Nursery is seeking seasonal garden and grounds assistants to work Monday–Friday.  Applicants must be available to work 20-40 hours per week from March-August for Juniper Level Botanic Garden, effective by March 15th, 2017.  Qualified candidates must be physically durable, have a tolerance for a wide range of outdoor weather including summer heat, have a good work ethic, a friendly personality, and be able to work well with others. Qualified candidates must be able to pay acute attention to detail while working at a fast pace. Preference will be given to applicants with horticultural or botanic garden experience. We are seeking team players who enjoy working in a friendly and fast paced environment. Send resumes with cover letters of interest with reasons why you are the ideal candidate to julieh@plantdelights.com.

Position Classification: Hourly (Non-Exempt) Seasonal, $8 / hour

Job Description

  • Perform horticultural maintenance in the display and research gardens including weeding, raking, and planting
  • Assist with grounds maintenance, including surface water control
  • Other duties as assigned 

Hardy Lady Slipper Orchids!!

Cypripedium, Lady Slipper Orchids, is a genus of woodland garden plants that are among the most desired of all native hardy orchids for sale, despite their often finicky requirements.

Plant Delights Nursery is excited about our bare root shipment of responsibly grown, flowering size, cypripedium orchids we received yesterday.  These plants are nursery propagated and not collected from the wild.

picture of bare root cypripedium pubescens

Cypripedium parviflorum var. pubescens – healthy bare root liners with multiple eyes!

Fall is the best time for planting your hardy lady slipper orchid. Beds should be well-prepared and amended with compost unless you naturally have rich, organic soil. Dig a shallow but wide crater, spread the roots out flat (with eyes pointed upward), cover them with 1″ of soil, and water in well.

picture of cypripedium gabriela and healthy bare root liners

Cypripedium ‘Gabriela’ – healthy bare root liners with multiple eyes.

You should avoid planting your lady slipper orchid near aggressive groundcovers (such as ivy, vinca or Japanese pachysandra) or near the base of trees or large shrubs due to root competition. Check out this article on Cypripediums for more in depth information.

picture of cypripedium reginae and healthy bare root liners.

Cypripedium reginae – healthy bare root liners with multiple eyes.

Other varieties of Cypripedium we just got in for sale include C. kentuckienseHank Small, Michael, and Philipp. All plants have been potted to keep the roots from drying out and for shipping, but the mix can easily be removed for fall planting and incorporated into the planting site.

Final Weekend of Open Nursery and Garden for 2016!

This is the last weekend of our 2016 Open Nursery and Garden! Come see our gardens and be inspired to add a bit more color and texture to your own gardens. Be sure to stop by Jim and Kathy Phillips Pottery and Stone Sculpture booths, debuting at Plant Delights Nursery and Juniper Level Botanic Garden for the first time this weekend!

picture of Kathy Phillips Pottery booth at Plant Delights Open House

Jim and Kathy Phillips Pottery and Stone booth at Plant Delights Open House

picture of Echinacea blooming in the Sales House

Echinacea blooming in the Sales House

picture of Souto Garden that opened Spring 2015

Souto Garden that opened Spring 2015

Snackin’ in the garden

Mantis-cicadaIn the dim pre-dawn light, I was making my morning trek to retrieve the morning newspaper, when my attention was pulled to a pain-like screeching coming from the garden.  It wasn’t hard to follow the noise, which turned out to be a hungry praying mantis, squeezing the life from a still struggling cicada, who’d found itself in the wrong place at the wrong time.  There are so many wonderful opportunities in the garden to observe nature if we just slow down and be mindful of each moment.

 

2016 Summer Sale – Save 20% On Nearly 100 Plants

Our annual Summer Clearance Sale is now underway. With summer inventory complete, we’ve found some of the coolest plants didn’t sell in the numbers that we’d hoped, so we’re left with extra inventory. Quantities are limited. Sale ends July 3 and plants must be scheduled by July 5 for shipment or pickup. Shop now!

Favorites from this week in garden.

 

 

Dryopteris x australis3There’s so much going on in the garden now, it’s hard to know where to start.  The ferns are looking fabulous, and one of our favorites is the native Dryopteris x australis.  Yes, “australis” means from the south.  This 3-4′ tall fern grows well in moist or fairly dry soils.  Here’s the clump beside our shipping office. Epimedium Splish Splash

Epimedium ‘Splish Splash’ is in its second flowering spurt of the spring.  This re-flowering Plant Delights introduction is really quite special, both in foliage and in flower.

 

Eucomis Sparkling Burgundy combo with Verbena Lavender Frappe

Here’s a fun color echo combination of Eucomis ‘Sparkling Burgundy‘ and Verbena ‘Lavender Frappe’.  The textural difference in the two plants makes this vignette visually appealing.  Baptisia Pink Truffles3

 

Here’s our clump of Baptisia ‘Pink Truffles’ from the breeding work of our friend Hans Hansen at Walters Gardens.  This is the first named pink flowered baptisia….we are very pleased with its performance.Clematis recta Lime Close foliageClematis recta ‘Lime Close’ has been amazing this spring.  For years, I was under the mistaken impression that this wouldn’t grow in our heat…I was very wrong.  The non-vining Clematis ‘Lime Close’ is often sold under the marketing name Serious Black.  I love this plant!

 

Anole Love

We love our color-changing, native Carolina anoles.  He are some recent photos from the garden.Anole on yucca leaf

Hello…need some auto insurance.  Just kidding!

Anole on yucca leaf3

 

 

 

I’m looking for a mate…are you a mate?

Anole love

That’s more my speed…love in the afternoon…at Juniper Level Botanic Garden.

 

A Mindful Finch

Blind house finch at feeder

 

After finishing a recent lunch, I headed outside on the porch to fill our bird feeders.  Normally, all the birds instinctively retreat to a safe distance, awaiting their new snack, but something was different this day.  A solitary house finch remained, seemingly oblivious as I re-filled the feeder.  Why, I wondered, did it not fly away with the other birds, and then I noticed that it was blind. Researching further, I learned about finch mycoplasma (which also affect plants), is a disease that robs birds of sight, and often their life.

As sad as the finch plight was, it was amazing to watch the finch using its other senses to fearlessly continue to eat. The finch reinforced many of the lessons I’ve been learning…embrace all of our functional senses each moment and do so without judgment or fear, as none of us are guaranteed anything beyond the present.  What society labels disabilities are only so if we label them as such.  The natural world has many lessons to share if we’re mindful enough to observe.