For us, a garden is not simply a collection of plants. We love plants, but space making is equally important to us. A well-designed garden, no matter how big or small, evokes a feeling of well-being and connectedness to the natural world. Gazing at a well-designed garden allows something deep inside of us to fall into place.
We hope your garden is scratching that itch for you. If something is not quite working, remember we are always glad to have you bring in a picture of your trouble spots so we can help you make changes and selections. A printout is best, but even just a photo on your cell phone can help.
We are so lucky to benefit from the knowledge of all of the amazing garden designers who visit us here. This coming weekend, we have talks on Saturday and Sunday with two great design minds.
Design Like a Pro Workshop
Saturday, July 16: 11am – 12pm Come learn how to use our displays to design your garden with Garden Wise Guy, Billy Goodnick
Flowers can be so charming that they confuse the issue, but here quiet greens reveal superb design. Photo and garden design by Billy Goodnick
One person who caught up with us online recently is Billy Goodnick – a "Garden Wise Guy," landscape architect, musician, and multimedia phenomenon based in Santa Barbara. Billy wrote a blog post for Fine Gardening magazine this past spring that explained how our displays work and how gardeners can use them for inspiration.
Now Billy's coming to teach his insights live and in-person here at the nursery. He'll teach you how purchase with purpose – submitting our panoply of plants to exacting evaluation – so you can bring home only the best ones for your garden's needs. Don't miss the opportunity to learn from one of the most witty, energetic, and design-savvy garden gurus.
Billy's combination of pale kniphofia, dark-leaved Cercis canadensis 'Forest Pansy', and fuzzy Tibouchina heteromalla delivers punchy contrast with durable plants. Photo and design by Billy Goodnick
Please RSVP online so we can gauge how many people will join us. Everyone is welcome even if you decide at the last minute. And don't forget to come early for a cup of Ritual coffee and a stroll around.
We love how Billy has composed these Aeonium canariense, Asparagus densiflorus 'Myers', and Echeveria elegans for a part-shade spot. Photo and design by Billy Goodnick
Workshop: The Art of the Rosette
Sunday, July 17: 11am – 12pm Sean Hogan on how to design with gorgeous rosette succulents
When our friend Sean Hogan told us he'd be in town this summer, we jumped at the chance to have him talk with you about how to use our favorite rosette succulents – like agaves, yuccas, echeverias, bromeliads – in making beautiful gardens. One of the premier plant explorers in North America (he confirmed our event via cellphone from a remote Oregon mountaintop), Sean will also be providing a limited number of the cool new succulent rosette plants he's propagating at his astonishing nursery in Portland, Cistus Nursery.
Dasylirions at Texas's Peckerwood Gardens endure no end of cold, drought, and heat, and make a beautiful pattern of rosettes. These underappreciated beauties are a staple here at the nursery. Photo by Saxon Holt
Few people know more about using exciting rare plants in design than Sean. Maybe it's because he's discovered a lot of them and is propagating them at his nursery. Whether it's hardy yuccas scattered with manzanitas, agaves, lewisias, and native grasses on a green roof, or custom-grown native oaks that put the jungle into urban mega-projects, he's pushing our plant palette, making West Coast gardens more beautiful, hospitable, sustainable, and just plain cool. His next book, Plants of the Far West, will feature many of his new garden-friendly discoveries.
Agave potatorum takes center stage in this ménage of three different rosette succulents including a yucca and a Dasylirion longissimum, the Mexican grass tree. We'll have all three on hand for Sean's talk. Photo by Saxon Holt
Please RSVP online so we can gauge how many people will join us. Everyone is welcome even if you decide at the last minute.
Join Us on Facebook and Twitter
It's just like neighbors chatting about their gardens over the fence, but digitally. Please join us on Facebook and Twitter.