Perennial Possibilities

April 24th, 2013 by Jessica Farmer, Adult Education Supervisor

Do you want a low-maintenance garden that is perpetually colorful and interesting?
You can have it all!Perennials The Gardeners Reference

Join us for upcoming classes in our Perennial Series with Carrie Becker to learn how.

These classes involve both classroom lectures and field trips to see how the concepts can be applied in your own garden.

Space is still available in these classes, and you can register online.

Perennial Companions
2-part class: Wednesday, May 15th, 7:00 – 8:30pm, and Saturday, May 18th, 1:00 – 3:30pm
Fee: Early-bird discount $50; $60 after May 12

In this class you will learn how to put plants together in satisfying combinations that endure and to use site information (such as sun, shade, dryness, etc.) to place companion plants who need similar conditions together, while taking color, form and texture into account.

After the Shade
2-part class: Wednesday, June 19th, 7:00 – 8:30pm, and Saturday, June 22nd, 1:00 – 3:30pm
Fee: Early-bird discount $50; $60 after June 16

Is your formerly sunny garden becoming shady with maturing trees and shrubs? Or do you have areas of existing shade? This class will teach you how to plant for shade and still have beautiful enduring plants from early spring through fall. Learn to love the shade!

Instructor Carrie Becker is co-author of Perennials: The Gardener’s Reference, and has spent 40 years immersed in the study of plants as a gardener, professional landscape designer, consultant, and educator. One of the original designers of the Northwest Perennial Alliance Borders at the Bellevue Botanical Garden, she has taught classes about perennials, bulbs, annuals, and biennials in the horticultural department at Edmonds Community College in Lynnwood, Washington for 17 years. Carrie has written articles for Horticulture, Pacific Horticulture, Arboretum Bulletin, and the Northwest Perennial Alliance and was a Hortus Praefectus of the Northwest Perennial Alliance in 2008. Carrie lectures in various garden clubs, nurseries, arboretums, and flower shows around the Northwest.

Like to plan ahead? Mark your calendar for the last class in the series:

Bulbs!
Wednesday, September 25, 2013, 7 – 9pm
Fee: Early-bird discount $30; $35 after September 18

This class will show you how to select and grow bulbous plants for all kinds of garden conditions. Find out which bulbs are enduring as perennials, pest resistant and hardy!

You can register online here: https://www.cfr.washington.edu/uwbg/ 

Questions? urbhort@uw.edu or 206.685.8033

Check out our other upcoming classes, too!

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Registration Open for 2013 Urban Forest Symposium

March 6th, 2013 by Jessica Farmer, Adult Education Supervisor

2013 Urban Forest Symposium: Trees & Views
Hosted by PlantAmnesty and the University of Washington Botanic Gardens

What:   5th Annual Urban Forest Symposium
When:  May 13, Monday from 9am to 4:30pm
Where:  University of Washington Botanic Gardens Center for Urban Horticulture
3501 NE 41st St, Seattle, WA 98105
Cost:      $75 per person. Update: As of 5/9/13, lunches are no longer available for pre-order. A limited number of box lunches will be available for $15 on the day of the event.
Contacturbhort@uw.edu or 206-685-8033.
Register: http://depts.washington.edu/uwbg/news/urban-forest/

 

Expanded Program:

The issue of trees vs. views is a contentious one, pitting view seekers against tree lovers on hillsides facing mountains and water, up and down both coasts. This symposium is entirely devoted to an in-depth look at the issue and will be of interest to communities, HOAs, municipalities, arborists, lawyers and prosecutors, planners, developers, tree advocates, & individuals dealing with this complex issue.

Keynote address on The Aesthetics of Views: Kathleen Day, ASLA, LEED, AP BD &C, ISA certified. Kathleen Day has more than twenty years of experience combining the art and science of landscape architecture, arboriculture and horticulture.

Valuing Trees and Views: A series of speakers will describe how they value trees and views. Presenters include a real estate agent, tax assessor, tree appraiser, and forest assessment coordinator working with the I-tree program to assign ecological systems values to trees and greenbelts.

Policy and Views: A brief series of presentations on city view policies and dealing with conflicting interests on public and shared lands.

Trees, Views, and Slope Stability: Elliot Menashe, Natural resource manager & consultant, Greenbelt Consulting, on taking action to avert flooding, erosion, and landslides. Through enlightened view-management choices, drainage control, and vegetation management, you can stop creating tomorrow’s crisis today.

View and the Law – Covenants, Ordinances and Trespass to Trees: Randall S. Stamen, Attorney at Law and ISA Certified Arborist from Riverside, CA, will lead the discussion on evolving view covenants and ordinances. Other invited attorneys, including Barri Bonapart, owner of Bonapart & Associates, will discuss tree law, lessons learned, neighbor laws as they relate to illegal tree cutting for views, as well as case studies of mediation success.

The attorney presentations will be followed by a panel discussion and Q&A session.

 

THANKS TO OUR SPONSORS:

City of Seattle Office of Sustainability and Environment

West Seattle Garden Tour

 

and Our Supporters:        

The Davey Tree Expert Co.                 Thundering Oak Enterprises

Seattle Tree Preservation, Inc.           Windermere Ballard  

SvR Design Company                          Trees for Life

 

ISA Credits Available: 6; other professional credits pending.

 

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Northwest Horticultural Society Spring Plant Sale

February 25th, 2013 by UWBG Communication Staff

Saturday, March 9, 2013 9am – 3pm

photo

Find elusive spring ephemerals for sale at the NHS Plant Sale

Come get your early blooming plants at the Northwest Horticultural Society Spring Plant Sale. This annual event features dozens of vendors and lectures by gardening experts, including Dan Hinkley.

Dan Hinkley will be speaking twice at the sale. Tickets go on sale at 8:30 for $5. At 10am his topic is Foliage First – Building the foundation of your garden. At 1pm the topic is The moment at Windcliff – Winter gives way to early spring.

Also, at 11:30 there will be a free experts Q&A session with Lorene Edwards Forkner, Richie Steffen & Marty Wingate.

The sale is free, but tickets for the lectures cost $5.00. Proceeds benefit the Miller Library.

3501 NE 41st St, Seattle, WA 98195

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What’s new in Union Bay Natural Area for 2013, you ask?

February 10th, 2013 by Rosemary Baker, UBNA RA

Greetings! I’m excited and grateful to be the 2013 UBNA graduate student manager for winter and spring quarters. I will be leading volunteer groups maintaining restoration sites throughout the natural area and this season we have begun an internship program with students from Edmonds Community College!

The interns and I are working every Tuesday and Thursday through early June, so if you have any interest in getting dirty, releasing some pent up aggression on the proper objects (weeds!), and basking in the beauty of urban nature, we’re happy to have individual folks join us.  Or if you have a group and wish to arrange for a volunteer work party please contact UBNA manager, Dr. Kern Ewing. His contact info can be found through the University of Washington staff directory.

UBNA Assistant manager, Rosemary Baker planting Skunk cabbage

UBNA Assistant manager, Rosemary Baker planting Skunk cabbage (Lysichiton americanum)

Am so pleased to contribute to the Center for Urban Horticulture community. Happy gardening!

-Rosemary Baker

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Thank You NAIOP! New Video Shows Hardworking Volunteers

November 9th, 2012 by Tech Librarian, Tracy Mehlin

Members of the Commercial Real Estate Development Association joined forces at their 2012 Community Enhancement Day to spiff up the Center for Urban Horticulture. Projects included invasive plant removal, small construction projects, painting, planting and much more.

Hoop-houses were rebuilt, Stairs from the McVey Courtyard to the Event Lawn were built, and the weed-prone gravel paths were replaced with stamped concrete in the Soest garden (photo right).

UWBG director, professor Sarah Reichard, remarked: “Of special interest to the faculty and students: the wet beds are rebuilt and look gorgeous. Get that wetland research going now!”

CUH is sparkling now thanks to our NAIOP friends, community members and the  UWBG Horticulture staff.

Watch the action:

Video posted with permission.

 

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November 2012 Plant Profile: Miscanthus sinensis ‘Little Kitten’

November 6th, 2012 by Soest Gardener, Riz Reyes

Ornamental grasses begin to put on a show in autumn as striking blades of silvery light greens transition to deep yellows and tans adding structure and textures during a time of year  perennial beds are cut back and put to rest. The genus Miscanthus is a staple of ornamental grasses.  Native to Japan and China, they are tough and easy to care for.

Once established, they are drought tolerant, easily maintained, and typically possess year round interest. Some selections, however, have had a reputation for being too large of an ornamental grass for small urban gardens. They may be overly vigorous, and in some occasions, relentlessly self seeding. There’s a remarkable array to choose from, but there was a cultivar two years ago that caught my eye and has continually impressed me.

‘Little Kitten’ has been a pleasant and manageable ornamental grass that stays tidy and it has a soft, demure elegance to it when used singly as a specimen and it adds a wonderful foil to bold foliage late in the season in containers massed as a small group.

 

Common Name: Dwarf Maiden Hair Grass

Location: Soest Garden Bed 4 (Rear)

Origin: Garden Origin

Exposure: Full Sun/Part Shade

Height and spread: 3-4ft. tall x 3ft. wide

Bloom Time: mid-late Autumn

 

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Seasonal Horticulture Update: “The Summer of Our Content”

November 3rd, 2012 by UWBG Horticulturist

Hydrangea by Harpa KarinUWBG Horticulture and Plant Records staff had a very busy, productive and satisfying summer. A cold wet June and early July pushed extraordinary plant growth, and, oh my, the WEEDS…Then, just as quickly as we could say, “No summer in Seattle”, the heavens went dry and lo and behold, we experienced an historic dry spell extending our summer to October 12. See King 5 news story starring, horticulturist and new plant care team member, Neal Bonham.

http://www.king5.com/news/local/If-today-stays-rain-free-driest-August-on-record-168165016.html

In hindsite, this weather pattern was just what the plant doctors ordered. A prosperous longer than usual planting window followed by a longer than usual dry period enabled us to plant into late June and then complete several landscaping projects into October.

For example, the contractor hired for constructing our 2.5 acre New Zealand eco-geographic display in the Pacific Connections Garden lucked out big time grading the steep, fortunately dry glacial-till slopes with heavy equipment. On a smaller scale, we were able to sneak a new berm in the hollies, which will eventually accommodate new specimens in the American clade. If you visit, check out the new interpretive signage.

It was all about NAIOP’s 22nd annual community enhancement project on the other side of the water at CUH. Early on in the planning stages, our associate director, Fred Hoyt, kept saying this event could be a game-changer for us. As time wore on and the project scope was scaled-back, it began to seem his prognostication would not come to pass. Now, after all is mostly said and done, if not a game-changer, it was most certainly HUGE for much needed improvements and indeed a springboard for potential future projects on our CUH campus, gardens and UBNA that will be appreciated by all for years to come.

I’m particularly excited about the huge effort that went into upgrading our plant production and corps yard area behind DRC. It’s amazing what laying down new gravel and paint can do for a tired looking nursery and storage space. And, just in the nick of time, we will now be able to overwinter lots of plants in a completely restored hoop-house.

Time now to blow the horn, as I would be remiss as a supervisor by not extending praise to my hard-working dedicated staff. Everyone contributed greatly to the enormous summer’s contents worth of planning, preparing, implementing and, of course, maintaining the grounds, gardens and plant records, including all the volunteer programs we’re involved with, throughout our botanic gardens. Here are a few of our summer accomplishments, not previously mentioned, and in no particular order:

  • A newly installed Winter Garden drainage system in the recently renovated SE quadrant. This was a joint operation between UWBG and City Parks crews. Implemented due to waterlogged soils not foreseen in the original bed renovation. May all our efforts pay off for healthy Winter Garden displays in the future!
  • A complete unabridged inventory and review of our plant collections within the Japanese Garden. Believe it or not, this is the first inventory taken since the UW gave up managment of the Japanese Garden to Seattle City Parks and Rec in 1981!
  • The Soest lawn has been renovated. Long overdue. You shoulda seen the thatch pile!
  • The incredible planning and installation for the “Music of Trees”!  Last weekend before UWBG arborist, Chris Watson, and the artist, Abby Aresty, begin the tedious task of dismantling the complex engineered designs.
  • Forest ridge middle-trail restoration in WPA. An Eagle Scout project and another joint operation between UWBG and City Parks staff.
  • Brubaker Quaking Aspen Grove maintenance project. Ask arborist assistant, Darrin Hedberg, where to find it.
  • Another successful and fun “Day of Caring”! Joint operations between all three arboretum partners: AF, UWBG and City Parks.
  • Completion of our 4th year of our 5 year DOE Garden Loosestrife grant. Although we are making headway, there are big challenges that lay ahead for this noxious weed.

And now that it is indeed officially fall and a surprising colorful one at that, it’s onward marching soldiers to another ambitious fall/winter planting season…Coming attractions include continuing McVay courtyard renovation and a Capstone REN project in the hollies to name a few.

Happy Holidays blog readers! Stay warm and cozy and renew your gardening senses by visiting UWBG!

 

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Wedding & Event Planning Tour: Fun Starts at CUH

November 2nd, 2012 by Tech Librarian, Tracy Mehlin

Join us Sunday, November 11, 2012 from 11am-5pm for the first annual Northlake Wedding & Events Tour!
Whether you are planning an upcoming wedding, holiday party or celebration, you do not want to miss this fun day of touring the venues in the Fremont, Wallingford, University and Eastlake Neighborhoods.

Where will you hold your next event? Take the Northlake Wedding and Event Tour to find the perfect venue. Photo by Lauren Kahan.

This will be a fantastic opportunity for you to learn about the diverse event services each local venue and featured vendor has to offer. Sit back and relax as our provided transportation sweeps you from venue to venue.
Start planning your own event as you are inspired by the decor and fabulous themes produced by our featured event planners at each location.

Please visit www.northlakewedding.com, to purchase tickets – only $15 for one ticket and $25 for two, $20 per ticket if you buy at the door.

Registration starts at 10am at the Center for Urban Horticulture in Merrill Commons. Come early because the first 50 people registered will receive free swag bags! 3501 NE 41st Street, Seattle, 98105.

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September 2012 Plant Profile: Hesperantha (Schizostylis) coccinea

September 5th, 2012 by Soest Gardener, Riz Reyes

This delightful, but seldom grown corm from South Africa is looking the best its ever looked in the Soest Garden here at the Center for Urban Horticulture.  It has been in bloom since early July and there are more buds to come as this particular species is known for its late summer/autumn flowering, which is always quite valuable in the landscape as fall rolls around.

It’s still commonly known as Schizostylis in the trade (Pronounced “Skizo-sty-lis” OR “shizaw-stalis”), but Hesperantha is the correct name. It’s in the Iris family and related to the similar looking Gladiolus, Crocosmia, and Freesia. This particular selection is a lovely one called ‘Torero’, which was developed in Oregon.

 

It prefers moist, but well draining garden soil and full sun. It is absolutely spectacular amongst ornamental grasses and a mature clump can remain in bloom from late summer and sometimes sporadically into the winter depending on how severe our cold weather is here in the Pacific Northwest.

Common Name: Cape Lily, Crimson Flag
Location: Soest Garden Bed 6
Origin: Dwarf selections are of garden origin.
Height and spread: 1.5-2ft. tall and about 3ft. wide on mature clumps.
Bloom Time: Late Summer into Autumn and sometimes into Winter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Save the date: CUH work party on 9/15

August 13th, 2012 by Heidi Unruh, UWBG Communications Volunteer

UWBG invites our friends and neighbors to join NAIOP, the Commercial Real Estate Development Association, to a work party to spiff up the Center for Urban Horticulture. Projects include invasive plant removal, small construction projects, painting, planting and much more. The transformation starts at 6:30 am on Saturday, September 15.

IT’S EASY AS PIE TO VOLUNTEER FOR NAIOP 2012 Community Enhancement Project/SEPT 15/CUH:

  • Register w/ NAIOP anytime from 6:30am or sleep in and join us later in the day
  • Registration located north side of NHS Hall
  • You or your group will be assigned to one of the 17 work projects throughout CUH grounds and gardens, including UBNA!
  • Grab a T-shirt and gloves!
  • Public transportation, carpooling, biking… all recommended, as parking may be difficult, especially if you’re not an early bird.
  • Community Service Hours honored!
  • Breakfast treats and BBQ lunch provided!

Come one, come all and help your CUH take on a fresh new look!  Projects include:

  • New Stairway from central courtyard to events lawn!!
  • New landscape along 41st St planting strip!!
  • New gravel along entire length of UBNA loop trail
  • New pavers to replace gravel paths in Soest Garden
  • 2 newly refurbished hoop houses
  • Newly painted sheds
  • Invasive weed removal
  • Mulching and weeding in Goodfellow Grove
  • And MORE!!!!
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