Monday, April 5, 2010

Epimediums—A Trip to Joy Creek Nursery

Tall Douglas fir, spruce and giant sequoia grow in my backyard creating lots of dry shade. Which is all well and good except I that like lush woodland plantings. My pulmonarias (lungwort) do very well in areas under these trees and they provide sweet blue and/or pink flowers in the spring and striking foliage most of the year. So I’m very happy with those.

But I’ve also heard that epimediums are good dry shade plants and they also offer delicate flowers and shapely leaves. Joy Creek Nursery offers many (15) epimedium varieties and Maurice Horn, co-owner of the nursery, offered to help me select a few for my garden. I though you might like to come along for the visit, too.

For an interesting article on "Up and Coming Epimediums," visit

Joy Creek is a must see nursery with an expansive display garden and a robust offering of workshops, which include "Divisions" (dividing perennials) April 11, “Paths and Circulation” April 18, and "Paths and Staircase Construction" April 25. All workshops start at 1pm. Check out for their catalog, workshop schedule and directions. Maurice is the guru of gravel (and “hell strip”) gardening and a big proponent of adding mycorrhiza to the soil for healthy plants. Oh, and he’s also an expert on clematis and hydrangeas and has introduced several plants into the trade, including Miscanthus sinensis 'Gold Bar'.

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