01 November 2017


"Even if something is left undone,
everyone must take time to sit still
and watch the leaves turn."

Elizabeth Lawrence (1904-1985)

Author of  A Southern Garden––one of the undisputed
 classics in American garden writing. She also wrote
 Little Bulbs
Gardens in Winter
Gardening for Love
A Garden of One's Own
Through the Garden Gate.
magazine has a beautiful tribute to her;

16 October 2017


Angel's Rosemary Blue Lagoon
Corinne's Grime's Golden apples
Cherie's "Tiger Lilies"
English Torquay Pottery pitcher.

Anno sixteen October 2017,
Shaw Island harvest trio,

"blooming where they were planted."

04 October 2017

🌿 Wordless Wednesday

"Few plants carry such a cargo of atmosphere.
Ferns are the embodiment of green thoughts
in a green shade."

Hugh Johnson, The Principles of Gardening.

With thanks to savvy gardeners, sailors, and Shaw Island 
Gatehouse support crew, Aho'i & Maggie of Olympia, WA.
Shaw Island Maidenhair ferns 4 October 2017.

13 September 2017


Lilium lancifolium 'Splendens'
These Asian Lilies (aka 'Tiger Lilies')
first reached U.S. gardens in 1804.
The ones reaching up to taunt the Dragon

are the first 'Tiger Lilies' at the Gatehouse,
Squaw Bay Road, Shaw Island.
Anno thirteen September two thousand and seventeen.

No seeds for sale but bulbs when the
new bulbils are more mature.

06 September 2017

🌿 Summer Rose from Shaw Island 🌿

Rosa 'Abraham Darby'
Crow Valley handthrown clay pot
For Raymond & Claudia.
Thanks for the visit from Portland, OR.
Summer 2017

31 August 2017


Gatehouse Garden Foxglove 
Digitalis purpurea 'Alba'
at least 7 feet.
This happy mother plant has produced
lots of fresh seeds that are now
processed for the seed rack.
Anno thirty-one August 2017
A favorite specimen from Shaw Island, WA.

The seeds of this offering were collected from the robust, large-leaved plant growing unstaked on the north side of the Gatehouse after ripening in the long dry summer of 2017. For this gardener, it is a cherished white bloom, without spots, that climbed at least seven feet towards the sky. No other foxglove was blooming in the garden for the bees to cross-pollinate so I'm hoping the majority of seeds will yield white flowers. In any case, the color of the future bloom can be determined by the color on the lower leaf-stalk in the first year of this biennial and rogued out if it is not to your liking.
The culture for the 'alba' seeds will be the same as for Carol's Digitalis purpurea also listed for viewing  here.
Ideal for: cottage gardens, cut flower garden, woodland garden.
Ease of Sowing: EASY for all.
Keep the soil damp until germination takes place. Thin to 6". Transplant to 24" apart into flowering site in autumn for flowering the following year. They grow in most soils and prefer part shade. 
Harvesting flowers: Pick the top king flower out and you will promote the production of more side flowers, which is how it is with this one lush, "tall drink of water" at the Gatehouse. 
      "I love white foxgloves, lighting up the garden like church candelabras, carrying the eye deep into dim recesses, self-sown, in drifts or singly. Each year I fret when they are in flower––should I be planting more in strategic places for next year? Sometimes we get round to it, but more often than not, left to themselves, they make a better job than we might have done. " 
Chatto, Beth and Christopher Lloyd. Dear Friend & Gardener, Letters on Life and Gardening. London. Frances Lincoln Ltd. 1998. A gift book brought home to Shaw Island from friend Angel, inscribed by both authors. 12 September 2001. Thank you.
Gatehouse Garden Foxglove 'Alba' 
Seeds for sale while they last, 
at the Gatehouse shed,
Squaw Bay Road, Shaw Island, WA.