Welcome to June and welcome to our annual Subaru Garden Dayz. Today we are back with our friends at Capitol Subaru in Salem from 11 to 3. It will be a great day with lots of great vendors, food and fun. There are over a dozen garden vendors featuring great plants, art and other cool items. We will have free food and sodas while supplies last and every half hour we are giving away a $25 gift card to either Al’s Home and Garden or Portland Nursery. Capitol Subaru is also doing a drawing for a $100 Al’s Gift Card later in the day. If you stop by between 1 and 2pm we will also have a drawing for 2 three day passes for the Oregon Jamboree!!!
There is so much to see and do, we hope to see you there!
This week we featured...
Egan Pollinator Plants
The bees need our help and there is so much we can do. One thing that is easy to do is to plant flowering plants in our garden. For most people that means planting a bunch of perennials to keep those pollinators happy, but Ellen Egan of Egan Gardens (503-393-2131) has another idea, annuals! The one chore of an annual is to make lots of flowers. This means lots of seeds and that means more flowers for the bees. Where perennials are a ‘one and done’ plant when it comes to blooms, annuals keep performing all summer long!
Ellen brought out a lot of annual bloomers for us to look at. The first was nicotiana, which not only has a ton of blooms but also smells good and blooms well into the night, for those ‘night owl’ pollinators. Heliotrope was her next plant. This one was a great one for butterflies. The large flowers make great landing pads for them, plus you can’t beat the fragrance. Verbenas were also on her list and they are also top performers. These are great plants either in your baskets or containers, but also in your garden beds. The same is true for lobelias, where in addition to the bees, you also get a flock of hummingbirds too. A relative of the snapdragon is the nemesia. These are very prolific bloomers. Zinnia and salvia are two very popular plants that can be added to the list of plants popular with the bees!
If you would like to learn more about pollinator plants you can sign up for a free class on the 9th of June at 2pm, and you can make your garden a haven for supporting bees, butterflies and other pollinators! Contact the nursery for details.
Petal Heads – Garden Dayz
Perennials are always great in the garden, but if you can get a really cool one then your garden becomes a showcase! To check out some really cool perennials we stopped by Petal Heads (503-953-3228) in West Linn. Dave took William on a tour of ‘out of this world’ plants. How do we know they are out of this world? We kept finding ourselves returning to a Star Wars theme in describing them. The first plant that Dave brought out was a Baptisia ‘Sparkling Sapphires’. This one was like the Millennium Falcon going into hyperspace for Dave, WOW! Great blooms and lots of them! This one, and most of the plants that Dave brought out, loves to be abused. Actually, that means they can handle tough conditions and respond well. Another great plant is the Abutilon or Flowering Maple. It is known as a maple, even though it isn’t, because of the maple shaped leaves. These are great bloomers that go all season long and are a hummingbird magnet. Looking to the sky again we found the Knautia name-sake ‘Thunder and Lightning’. Variegated foliage and bright pincushion flowers are rumored to have been seen by the Space Shuttle (ok, we made that part up! But still a bright flower). Another lightning name belongs to the Huechera ‘Red Lightning’. This one also has bright leaves and a tell-tale red veining that makes the lime green ‘dinner plate’ sized foliage stand out. A tongue twist plant ‘Agastache’ was next. This one is a favorite in the garden, but the newer varieties are a real improvement with more flower spikes and longer bloom times. Plus they tend to stay shorter so they don’t fall over in your garden. Another attractive plant is the brunnera, but the one thing that it won’t attract is deer. This is truly one plant that deer will avoid. When you add that fact to the attractive foliage you have a true garden winner! Keeping with the Star Wars theme we found the Death Star of plants. Leonotis or ‘Lion’s Tail’ is a great plant with some unique blooms. The blooms are balls of color that form on a tall stem. These ‘Death Stars’ become a magnet for bees and hummingbirds too!
With all these great perennials Dave brought out a great annual that they will have at Subaru Garden Dayz. He will have a Mighty Mato tomato at the event. These are grafted tomatoes and they are said to be more disease resistant and more productive than a regular tomato. You have to get at least one for your garden! Stop by and see all these great plants at Subaru Garden Dayz in Salem.
Subaru Garden Dayz
As I mentioned before, you can fill your day and your garden with a ton of great plants and art. Check out our video at the dealership.
Marilynn Russell Metal Art
Art is always welcome in the garden and in the home. We found a great new artist to join us at Subaru Garden Dayz, Marilynn Russell. Actually, she may be new to us, but she has been making great art for years! Marilynn started as a seamstress and soon after a metal art class she was on her way. She used her art to express her passions and soon she was making money at it. She even made heart magnets that were so successful they paid her rent in college! Her themes now include people, animals and unique creatures of every kind!
If you would like to see her art and maybe take a piece home, she will have a limit selection of her art at Subaru Garden Dayz. Stop by and say hi!
FPG – Berries, Brews and BBQs
It is berry time at French Prairie Gardens (503-633-8445). We met up with Katie in the greenhouse to talk about the great event starting this weekend. The heat of the spring has the berries coming on strong! You can come out and ride the wagon out to the berry field and u-pick your own, or you can stop by the store and buy some already picked.
The Berries, Brews and BBQs event is happening over the next 3 weekends at the farm. The admission is free for the farm, and so is the parking. You simply pay to play, eat, or drink whatever you would like and once you get in you can find tons to do for the whole family. If you are into brews and ciders, they will have over 20 different cideries and breweries on each weekend for you to sample. If you like BBQ they will have an assortment of different BBQed meats for you to try too. Of course they will have the farm animals out for visitors, slides, hand-pump duck races and tractor wagon rides for the family. And don’t forget the live music!!! Stop by and enjoy a day in the country with the best tastes of the season.
Wavra Farm – Garden Dayz
Some of the best color plants we’ve seen happens to be at Wavra Farms (503-364-9879) in Salem. Diane always has some wonderful plants and she has promised to bring them to Garden Dayz. We started in the hanging basket house. Diane had a petunia basket that was looking great and she told us that is because it is getting a lot of daily water in the morning to avoid diseases and a liquid fertilizer twice a week. She also mentioned that you only want to fertilize your fuchsia baskets once a week or even every two weeks. Too much fertilizer and the fuchsia baskets will send out too much foliage and not a lot of blooms. Another tip about fuchsia baskets that she gave us. Remember to remove the little ‘cherry’ after the plant blooms. This is a seed and if you take it off, the plant energy will go toward more blooms and not to the seeds. She will have all kinds of baskets at the event.
Then we went inside the main greenhouse and looked at some other plants. We started with begonias. These have deep, rich colors and can handle full sun or full shade. That means you can use them everywhere, either in a basket or even in the ground. That is true with the coleus that Diane had on her table. These are really low maintenance too. The next plant was one of our favorites a cuphea called ‘Firecracker’. This is a hummingbird favorite and has a tremendous color to the blooms too. Plants that help fill in between your other plants include the Creeping Jennys. These came in two colors, a chocolate and a gold. The petunias will also make an appearance at Garden Dayz. These ‘million bells’ will work as trailing plants in your baskets or as a spreading ground cover in your regular garden. The final plants were sun impatiens. These are sun and heat lovers. If you give them lots of each, you will be rewarded with tons of blooms! If you are looking for a splash in your garden to get ready for summer parties and entertaining, then add a few of these and you can’t lose!
Lebanon Hospital Healing Garden
Last year we paid a visit to a great Japanese Garden in Lebanon, Oregon at the Boulder Falls Inn. This garden was one of three built by Hoichi Kurisu, a world renowned landscape designer of Japanese gardens. This year we were able to visit one of the other gardens in Lebanon that he designed, the Lebanon Hospital Healing Garden. Judy met with Christy from the Samaritan Hospital foundation to talk about the garden and what it means to the patients and the community. Christy told us that the gardens now fill a space that was once flat and barren. There was not much to see and even less of a space to enjoy and relax. The board member was a good friend of Hoichi and soon the plans were in place to create this dense, secluded and calming space. The foundation covered the costs and now everyone can enjoy this great garden. It is enjoyed by visitors and even patients. Windows even allow birthing suites and cancer patients to enjoy the view even if they can’t get outside.
Lebanon is sharing this garden and others around the area as they welcome the Oregon Federation of Garden Clubs. The Santiam District is hosting this huge group of garden enthusiasts to Lebanon where they will take in the scenery and try to squeeze in some business too. Trudie and Joli from the Santiam District joined Judy in another part of the garden to fill us in on all the activities that garden clubs like theirs does in the community. They help maintain garden spaces and provide educational classes for gardeners of all types and abilities. They even provide scholarships for young people interested in agriculture and gardening. They are a busy crew!
One way to raise funds is through a banquet at the state convention. This year they are opening the banquet to non-members for the first time in over 90 years! On Tuesday, June 12th people can enjoy a wonderful dinner and get a chance to hear from Hoichi Kurisu himself! This famous designer will be the keynote speaker at the event. Tickets are only $75 and seating is limited! For more information about the dinner and about this great organization you can go to the website for the Oregon State Federation of Garden Clubs at http://oregongardenclubs.org. Check them out and if you are in Lebanon, stop and see these wonderful gardens.
Terra Casa Outdoor Furniture
The outdoor entertaining season has begun and it is all about making people comfortable outside, and you should start with summer patio furniture. We stopped by Terra Casa (503-577-8242) in Damascus to talk to Diana about the wonderful, colorful and heavy duty furniture that they have. This furniture is made out of recycled plastic and was heavy duty!! The chairs, tables and lounges are built to last. The weight of the chairs alone pretty much guarantees that they won’t blow away in the wind. The colors available were also amazing. The furniture alone was a guaranteed conversation starter. If you are looking for some help in getting a new table (or some help setting that table) for your outdoor entertaining stop by Terra Casa and check out all the great items they have.
Using the Solexx Material
In the past we have told you about Solexx and the Greenhouse Catalog. This week we were joined by Steve to show you just how great the solexx material is and how easy it is to install. Steve showed us how rigid this material is and how durable. A simple greenhouse kit usually comes with a single layer of plastic that may last a year or two, but the solexx material is so much better it is guaranteed for 10 years. The double walled panel is also great for regulating temperature and light. The solexx material helps to defuse the light and is better for your plants because all parts of the plant will get a nice even light. It also keeps that nasty direct sunlight from cooking your plants too! Steve also took us through the steps on installation. It was as easy as putting in a few screws and cutting the panels to shape. Once these panels are on your frame, because they are rigid, the structure becomes more stable. In fact, we have seen photos from customers with snow piled on their Solexx greenhouses!
If you would like to get a solexx greenhouse you can stop by their retail location in Brooks or you can go to their website at https://www.greenhousecatalog.com or call 800-825-1925. If you just want to get the solexx material and build your own design, they can do that too! They can send large sheets or even rolls of solexx right to your door.
Parr Small Planter
No matter what time of year we can look to creating colorful planters that can bring more gardening space closer to your doorstep. Amber Kozlowski and our friends at Parr Lumber (503-644-1178) have come up with a simple plan for a small cedar planter that uses only 2 boards. With a couple of minutes, a hammer (or a power nailer), some 5d galvanized nails and a miter saw we were able to construct a planter that will last for years. The best part? It costs less than 15 bucks to build. Amber also recommended that we seal the cedar so it lasts longer and that we drill a couple of drainage holes too. Still, not bad for a simple, quick to assemble planter!