Look at this beautiful plant.  Look at the green leathery leaves. Look at the soft fuzzy new growth.  Look at the fine bristly hairs, look at the petite urn-shaped flowers.  Look at those drooping little bells of white and pink. Look at this contrast of tender and tough.  Look at the smooth curve of the leaf and straight line of the stem.  Know this plant, … Continue reading Salal

June at the Arboretum

Another month and another walk full of surprises at the Washington Park Arboretum.  The leaves are so lush right now I wanted to wrap myself up in their soft green blanket.  The highlight of this trip was stumbling into the grove of tulip trees (Liriodendron tulipifera) so tall and tree-ish.  Hidden among their branches were the almost camouflaged flowers in muted colors of yellow and … Continue reading June at the Arboretum

Seaside Salal

This is the story of a plant, unnoticed yet everpresent.  Planted not for show, but for usefulness.  It grows in my own backyard, it grows in the Olympic National Park and it grows in the Pacific Ocean!  Yes, I found it growing on a rock on the Washington Coast.  What a surprise when we were on the beach, looking at tidepools filled with fascinating invertebrates, … Continue reading Seaside Salal

Salal Reflections

Can you imagine a plant like this one?  Light requirements:  sun, part shade, shade.  Soil Moisture:  dry, moist, wet.  Evergreen shrub.  What else could anyone want?  Except, of course, it’s tenacity and motto ‘I’m not going anywhere!’  If every plant grew in any conditions, gardening would suddenly become very boring.  We need to do our detective work.  We need to solve this logic puzzle of … Continue reading Salal Reflections