Thursday, 27 December 2012

An agave lover on Denman Island

Over the years I have shared thoughts and pictures with a group of wonderful people on the The Cloudforest Gardener: Northwest Palms and Subtropicals forum.  It has been a great way to ask questions about plants, and meet like minded "planty people" like myself.  I understand when Thomas Hobbs says: "I have a double dose of appreciation for plants;" and these folks certainly share in this double dose appreciation theory -  Particularly Linda from Denman Island.  For years I have drooled over her pictures of an xeric style garden full of agaves, opuntia, and succulents... (and olive trees!!!).  Linda kindly shared some pictures with me of her fabulous Denman Island BC garden.

Check out these amazing agave parryi. These beauties have been growing in her garden approximately 6-7 years.

Linda's garden has been going since 1998 when her house was built.  When asked about her love for succulents, Linda tells me it goes back to her early years spending her allowance money on succulents!!  In other words, she has always been a plant lover.

One of Linda's particular loves ... the "vicious ones!" This comes in handy with the deer population on Denman Island.

Much of Linda's fabulous collection has been seed grown as agaves and succulents were not as readily available when Linda's collection was building.


I always love seeing great plant combinations like these.

And speaking of an epic succulent garden .... This is the kind of garden I could only dream of! It looks more like something from San Francisco than B.C.


I asked Linda what plants she considers "staples" in the garden.  And to my joy and surprise, she tells me phormiums!! I don't have any of her phormium pictures, but Linda has had much success with them in the garden. To me, this goes to speak for a great microclimate with excellent drainage.  Being tucked closely along the East side of Vancouver Island certainly makes Denman Island a coveted growing region by PNW standards.

And Linda's garden certainly is a testament to both a great microclimate, but more than anything a loving gardener.

And check it out, she even has palms!!! This chamaerops humilis is certainly a favourite of mine.

Epic!!!

So I want to give a big thanks and shout out to Linda for sharing these wonderful photos of her fabulous garden! It is truly inspiring!

17 comments:

  1. An inspirational garden with some fabulous plants! Thanks for sharing this gorgeous place with us!

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    1. Inspirational indeed. No problem!

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  2. That is amazing - only a few plants look too young to tell if they will come out as nice as Abq (Dasylirion is one). But the others look as nice or nicer than what we can grow, and some I don't think we can.

    Is photo #3 an Agave montana? Must try some.

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    1. Isn't it absolutely amazing!!!

      I think you're right on agave Montana. It's a stunner that I will have to try too!

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  3. Linda has put together an awesome garden with great combinations. Some of the views do look more like California.

    Thanks for sharing this.

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    1. It really is fabulous! I was so glad she shared it with me so that I could pass it on.

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  4. Thanks for this flashback Louis! Back before I discovered garden blogs I used to spend a lot of time on the NW Palms and Subtropicals page. I still try to check in (lurk) every once and awhile, but not nearly often enough. I remember Linda's garden as being one of the best (as far as collection and planting design goes), thanks for the update! I was jealous when I first started reading thinking you'd visited her garden, have you ever met her in person?

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    1. I love it! I lurked for a long time on the forums and still lurk more than comment.

      I've never met Linda in person but I would love to visit her garden one day in the flesh. There are so many great gardens in the gulf islands and southern Vancouver island.

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  5. Thank you Louis for writing such a positive blog about my garden. And thanks to everyone else for such nice words. It has really made my day and there is a BIG smile on my face right now!! All of your generous comments are inspiring and now I can't wait to get out and work in the garden when the weather is nicer!

    David, the third agave is a montana. There are so many to choose from, but it may be my favourite agave and I really hope it does well here (with all of the rain) long term.

    Danger Garden and Louis, I have see pics of both of your impressive gardens and want you to know that I find them incredibly inspiring.

    Louis, or anyone else if you are ever in this area, you are more than welcome to visit. :-)

    Linda

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    1. Thank you, Linda. Just think, the days are getting longer! Soon and very soon we will be out in our gardens!!! Woohoo!!!! And thanks again for letting me share these pictures of your wonderful garden.

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    2. Thank you, Louis! Spring will be here in no time!

      Linda

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  6. Lovely garden, lovely post. A. montana sure is a gorgeous species and looks to be doing great there.

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    1. That agave montana has me convinced to plant one next spring!

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    2. Thanks, Hoover Boo. I'm hoping it looks just as good a few years from now, but bigger of course.

      Louis, everyone needs at least one! :-) You know who has some extras if you decide against buying one.

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  7. That garden is INCREDIBLE! I love everything about it. I think I even saw a texas sotol???????????!!!!!!!!!!!!! CRAZY! And wicked coooool!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Happy New Year Canadian friend!!!!!!!!!!

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    1. Isn't it amaaaaaazing!!!!! I want to try Texas sotol myself this year. Happy new year to you too!

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  8. Thank you Heather! It's Dasylirion leiophyllum, which I grew from seed. It has been in the ground for a few years now and seems to tolerate our wet winters. I don't know if it will need more heat to flower or not, but time will tell. I really hope to see flowers on it some day.

    Happy New Year to you and all! :-)

    Linda

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