We dropped by the Portland Classical Chinese Garden (503-228-8131) this morning to see all of the interesting plants they have there. You will want to stop by the garden, because as they say, it is ‘never twice the same’. Time is also running out on getting your marginally hardy plants protected for the coming cold months ahead. Pull some plants up to your house, cover some of the others and give all your plants a good layer of mulch to protect those tender roots and crowns.
This week we featured...
This story combines art and garden together. Corinne from Cornell Farm (503-292-9895
) learned how to use light sensitive dye and plants from her garden to make great fabrics for pillows, placemats and tote bags. She found some special dye at a local craft store and once it was diluted she painted it on the damp fabric. Once you finish applying it you just place your leaves, flowers or other object on the fabric. Then put it out in the sun and if you don’t have sun-light, you can put it under a lamp. In a few hours you will have a great piece of fabric that has preserved a part of your garden. Remember to wash the fabric separately the first time to keep it from bleeding into your other fabrics. If you want to see more, check with Corinne at Cornell Farm.
JB Nursery’s Winter Interest Plants
As the fall garden is in transition into winter you may be looking for some lasting color and texture to bring it back to life. We found some cool late fall plants that will help make that transition better. Rachel from Johnson Brothers Greenhouses (
541-484-1649) in Eugene showed off some of the great plants she found in the nursery. First we looked at the Agastache ‘Tutti Frutti’ with its wonderful purple flower spikes and it is very easy to grow. We moved to heucheras next. These plants are becoming more popular for their great foliage. We saw ‘Peach Melba’ and ‘Key Lime’. We then checked out a couple of Plumbago’s including the new ‘My Love’, a shorter, brighter version of the old favorite. Grasses are great for adding structure and we saw two that also add some great color to the garden. A Japanese Blood Grass called ‘Red Baron’ and a Miscanthus named ‘Dixieland’ were featured. If you think the season is over for color you can still find some at your local garden center, or you can stop by Johnson Brothers in Eugene to get your color fix!
A good pruner can make all the difference when you tackle a tough job in the garden and one of the newest pruners on the market is made right here in Oregon. We paid a visit to Leatherman Tools (
800-847-8665) to see the new Genus pruner that they have just introduced. Juli met with William and told him about the history of the company. Tim Leatherman started making all-purpose tools when he was traveling through Europe and needed a good all-in-one tool. That philosophy has stayed true in the design on this new pruner. The Genus has 9 tools in one, including a couple of screwdrivers, a sprinkler adjustment tool, a saw, a wire cutter and a knife. This is just the latest in the line of new pruners that Leatherman has introduced in the last couple of years. If you are looking for a good tool to last you for years stop by the retail store near the airport or go on-line to find a retailer near you.
Jan’s October Tips
The chilly, wet days of fall are here and that brings a new list of things for the home gardener to do in their garden. Jan McNeilan recently retired from OSU Extension
joined William to show us what we should be looking at to prepare for winter. First we looked at fuchsias. You don’t have to cut them back just yet. You will want to move them to a protected area and water them occasionally. When spring returns you can cut them back and replant them for the new season. Now is also a good time to look into preserving your fall fruits and vegetables. Jan has dried some apples for the winter but there are lots of things you can preserve. Check out the OSU Food Preservation website for more information. You can also look into propagating some of your plants and flowers. Jan found a new book on propagation by the American Horticulture Society. It breaks the process down into easy to follow steps. She also started to grow a sweet potato vine from a small start that she had. It is a great project for the kids too.
Kindergarden – Leaf Cards
Falling leaves are a sign of fall and a reminder of a great craft for your kids. Amy Bigej from Al’s Garden Center (
503-981-1245) showed us how to use those readily-available leaves to create cute note cards and greeting cards from nature’s bounty. The kids first picked fresh leaves off the trees (older ones are too dry to use) and then used paint to create a copy of the leaf on the paper. It is a wonderful way to get your kids ready, and excited, for the holidays.
Little Baja Container Tips
Pots that break in the winter cold are a myth! Sort of… Wayne from Little Baja (
503-432-8959) joined us to tell us how adding drainage will extend the life of our pots and our plants. Wayne has become an expert on pots and container planting and he explained the importance of creating proper drainage for your potted garden. Pots bust when they retain water in their clay. The water expands and when it does it cracks the pot. When you create better drainage you help the pot and it helps your plants as well. Wayne also explained how clay pots can ‘breathe’ and how that helps your plants thrive. Stop by either Little Baja location if you ever have any questions. There is one on Burnside and the new location on Hall in Tigard.