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We drove down to Greer Gardens yesterday looking for rhododendrons. We were a little late for the peak bloom season, but there were still many in bloom. Greer is an interesting place--14 acres of mostly rhododendrons, but what looked to be a fairly large selection of conifers as well. The staff was very helpful. My sister had marked the ones in their catalog that she was interested in; if they were still in bloom, they took us out in the field to see them; if they were not in bloom, they showed us slides of the blooms. In the end, we brought four home. Nice, healthy plants.

Today, we drove up to Heirloom Roses. What a fantastic place that turned out to be. They have showcase/demonstration gardens along both sides of the highway--and since the rose season is just coming on-- most were ablaze with blooms. The gardens are set up several ways-- growth habit, fragrance, heirloom/hybrid, on and on. In some of the gardens, the roses are interplanted with other plants [iris, geranium, columbine, and lots of things I didn't recognize] but in most of them, it's simply beds and beds of roses. The paths through the beds are grass; there are shade trees and, for the weary, benches. I'd sure like to have a wine-by-the-glass kiosk in the midst of it. Brought home three ramblers to plant along the back fence behind the new rhododendrons.

We thought about going to Forest Farm, too, until I found it with Map Point. Good grief! I think the only way you can get there is to parachute in [it may, in fact, have been D.B. Cooper's intended destination :)]

Island Jim
Willamette Valley
44.99 N 123.04 W
Elevation 148'
Hardiness Zone 8/9
Heat Zone 5
Sunset Zone 6
Minimum 0 F [-15 C]
Maximum 86 F [30 C]

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