Follow the Rain – Radical Attention to Place

“The Kalapuyas had originally a six month calendar that organized the spring, summer, and fall according to the camas growing cycle. The winter did not have any particular months as it was a long period where it was best that people stayed indoors because of the extensive rainfall.” -David G. Lewis I … more

Brighten Solstice with Snowberries

It was on one of those dim, fogged mornings when the remaining leaves on the trees appear to yearn for the ground, heavy like newly washed hair, limbs blurred with mist, the lines of them made more distant, remote, out-of-reach, and the grasses and tall perennials on the ground slump, arch, and … more

Native Seedlings of November

Overhead, a sheet of dim white, and ragged complexity of dark and light lace, moving, shifting with the wind. The clouds, a landscape mirrored in the small scene of remay-covered trays in my nursery, porous cloth peaked where plant tags stand and valleyed with collections of withered buddleia leaves and blown, black … more

Smells like October

wet spring followed by this, a parched, dry fall. crush of katsura leaves underfoot releasing toasted warmth, buttery, cozy, smell of fall. catch a whiff of gardenia-scented silverberry blossoms, of sweet perfumed eternal fragrance daphne, or salad freshness of sasanqua camellia, and rotting figs, fermenting apples, wildfire smoke on the wind. dry … more

Low Maintenance Gardens – Better for Pollinators and People

The first key to low-maintenance gardening is a fundamental perspective shift: embracing a bit of debris, learning to see dead stuff as beautiful rather than as work. The standing dead snag is an easy place to start. You know that’s a favorite spot for the woodpeckers and cavity nesters. On a smaller … more

Stars of September – asters, zauschneria, valley pines

A clear yellow leaf shows like a portal through the green, heavy-laden branches of the fig. It’s going to be good year for figs, plump ripening with the season’s change, with the waning sun. Black beauty lilies are done blooming, giving way to the pink wonder of Amaryllis belladonna, she of the … more

Roses in Five Senses

  “Recently, I spent a day at the cottage where I used to live, and noted with a pleased surprise – to be exact, it was a feeling of having done good unconsciously – the progress of the things I had planted nearly 10 years ago.” George Orwell   Arms heaped with … more

The Allure of Forest Gardens

A forest garden, no matter how small, can be an opportunity to create a garden architecture that invites you to stay awhile. There can be many ways to wander through the trees and even more places to sit. If you watch a frisky dog in a forest garden, you quickly see that … more

May Muse – candy flower

Claytonia sibirica Early morning traffic streams by on 1st avenue. The dog reads the morning news, sniffing mown, tightly edged grass and rank, pollen-scattering grass with equal attention. We pass creosoted utility poles, auto service lot / squat, one lone tent on the roadside, men in muted colors shouldering their few possessions, … more

Remember Willow

  driving north on I-five, Mount Hood out the passenger side window– awesome– but it’s the budded willows that draw me again and again, in road side ditch, furred golden-gray bright against the bleak stems of winter scrub, a small bird alights from one, later, a plump red-tailed hawk and my attention … more

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