Thursday, May 31, 2018

The Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden

Located adjacent to the Bonsai Museum is the large Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden, dedicated to the conservation and display of species rhododendrons and azaleas. It is set in a typical northwest forest with tall fir, cedar, and hemlock, and under planted with native and non-native maples and a wonderful mix of forest floor plants. 

The bonsai museum is free of charge, but there is a charge for the rhododendron garden. However, it was an Open Garden weekend for NPA members, so no charge for us! 

 While many of the rhododendrons are finished blooming, the new growth buds on these big leaf varieties are impressive. 

 The size of the leaves on this magnolia is impressive too!
 Overhead Japanese maples filter the light. 

This is the perfect setting for all kinds of ferns. 
 Tall rhodies reach for the sky, their blooms too high to see. 

 A fancy yellow poppy. 
 This hosta was bejewled in the sunlight. 

 A giant stand of May Apple, Podophyllum, with blooms hanging like fruit under the leaves. 
 Rodgersia and ferns

 A blue poppy sculpture celebrates a patch of Himalayan Blue Poppies. 

 Martagon lilies.

 The Pond Garden. 

 A dove tree, or handkerchief tree, Davidia involucrata for those who want botanical names. 

 The path into the Stumpery. 
A jumble of magnificent ferns is planted here.

Stumps were hauled to this site maybe ten years ago to build what is known as a Stumpery. Now greenery engulfs the stumps. 

This is a fern lover's paradise.
Moving on through the woodland to the rock garden. 

And then, back in the trees, another planting of blue poppies. 

Finally, the conservatory, where tropical species thrive. 

We end up at the plant sale area after a great stroll through this lovely garden. 
Yes, I did buy something - a hosta. Gotta support these places of beauty, and we did get in free. 


  1. So much to see here. The blue poppies are amazing. They won't grow here. Too hot and dry. I am glad you posted a close up of the bloom on the handkerchief tree. I have never seen it up close. I always wondered why people like that tree. Now I know.

  2. Beautiful photos of the garden! The flowers are just lovely! Thanks for sharing. God bless you both.

  3. Oh my, so much beauty. I love the stumpery idea. One of the things I enjoy most around here is the moss growing on fallen trees. The Rhodies are always breathtakingly beautiful in bloom, and embarrassingly ugly as the blooms fade.

  4. What a gorgeous place. That handkerchief tree is really unique. Hope your comment to yourself helped the email problem. I understand they are working on it.

  5. Everything is further along than when I was there. Lucky You, got to see blue poppies! Thanks for sharing your visit. I wonder if I will see you this weekend at some of the NPA gardens.

    1. Family obligations and travel plans are getting in the way of garden touring this weekend.

  6. Rhododendrons ( I just learned how to spell rhododendron!)are very large and showy so catch my eye. The ferns are lush and green . Along with other blooms this makes for a great tour.

  7. Those leaves are enormous! And all of your pictures are wonderful, as usual. I was amazed at how many you took! But thank you for sharing them with me. :-)

  8. I always enjoy your photographs, but I found these to be particularly stunning.

  9. All the pictures are lovely. I've not heard of a handkerchief tree but it looks so unique!! Love all those ferns too. Have a lovely weekend.

  10. Oh those Blue Poppies are beautiful! We have tried to grow them from seed with no luck....someone ever brought us seeds from Alaska...still no luck. What a fun day for you! That Handkerchief tree is awesome:)

  11. Mom really wanted to see those Himalayan Blue Poppies in Vancouver when we visited Butchart Gardens but we were too early and she was disappointed. We even bought her a mug with the blue poppies on them for fun.

  12. A special jewel of a garden that we're lucky to have! Thanks for the stroll. Every year I vow to make it there during the blue poppy flowering but then things get crazy busy and I forget.


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