Greetings from Seattle

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Joyful Gardeners Having Fun Together

On the fourth Saturday of each month January through October, our "neighborhood" garden group, affiliated with the Northwest Perennial Alliance, gets together for an activity or a field trip. I say "neighborhood", because that is the NPA description of our kind of group but we are scattered across a wide area south of Seattle. With many in the group still working regular jobs, weekends are precious, so we are fortunate to have most members attending on any given Saturday meeting day.

Today Vicky was in charge of the planning and selected a trip to the Highline Botanical Garden, and since our home is less than ten minutes away, we volunteered to also put on a little workshop on making glass flowers.

 Late August is not the best time for this garden, but there was still beauty to be found. 

 I had to look up this tall water plant with the purple plume flowers now fading to gray. It is Blue Pickerel, or Pontedera cordata.

 Rosa glauca rose hips and glodenrod. 
 We found a tag on this tree that looked like it was producing hops. It is a Japanese Hornbeam, Carpinus japonica. It was new to even our garden experts. 

 Grasses provide late summer/fall interest when other plants get tired looking. 
 Both the bones of the perennial garden and this Japanese garden were moved from their original locations when their spaces were cleared to build the third runway at Sea-Tac airport. This garden was painstakingly recreated here in North SeaTac park. 

 The original ornate lanterns have been stolen or vandalized, unfortunately, so new lanterns are being created using heavy rocks, not so easy to carry off. I really like the rustic look. 
 Lots of visiting goes on during these outings. 
 Tom shares information about pines with Sondra. He says the mature needles on Japanese Black Pines are very pokey. Others are not. So Sondra was then petting all the pines. 
 Still talking. 

 Back at the entry gate, acanthus flower stalks. 

 Part of the beautiful cut steel entry gate.

 Back at our house, we toured our garden, paying attention to the way we have used glass in the garden. I gave a brief demonstration on creating glass flowers, and then everyone got busy designing their own. We had lots of glass supply on hand, so we just charged the sticker price of the thrift store glass. 
 It was fun for me to watch people play with their designs, trying this and that. 
 Cheryl was very into the project and made two. 
 Judy made up her mind pretty quickly, but Guy deliberated for a long time. 
 Sherril worked with David to improve his creation.
 Vicky added embellishment to her design. 
Everyone left with the makings for a glass flower, including the re bar to mount them. They will do the gluing at home where they will have time to let everything set up properly.

And then we all went out to lunch at a little neighborhood restaurant nearby.  


  1. What a fun day and a fun project. Love the gates to those gardens.

  2. Lately I can never find colored glass at the thrift store. Looks like you all had a lot of fun!

  3. That was a super day. There's a lot of learning that goes on in one of these field trips.

  4. A fun day with a shared interest.

  5. What a beautiful garden. I like the glass flower craft as well.

  6. wow, what a fun activity and tour...I've got my glue now and will get started this week making my glass flowers!

  7. Great to share something you enjoy with a group of like minded folks.

  8. That garden still looks awfully pretty to me. I love the SeaTac garden that was recreated here. And yes, it seems everyone was enjoying their glass flower creations. :-)

  9. How sad that people actually damaged or stole the lanterns. You would think garden viewers would be more considerate. Darn, every time I see the glass flowers I think I will try it. I need to do some flea market browsing.

  10. Considering the time of year and the weather we've had that garden was in really good shape. Love that cut steel gate.

  11. Hard to believe there are people who can steal from a beautiful garden. That sounds like such a fun day. I love the gates!

  12. Everyone seems to be having a grand time! What a fun group of gardeners. I remember your previous posts about this garden and each time you show it, I vow to visit it myself.

  13. That Hornbeam is a beautiful plant! Looks like everyone had a good time! I hope they appreciated the glass workshop! :)


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