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According to all my grade school report cards, I never stop speaking!

Here is where I rant/ share/ proselytize about whatever I think is
beautiful/ interesting/ semi-important....

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Could it be that dreams do come true?
When artistic talent, sweat, business savvy and encyclopedic
plant knowledge are combined, it seems they do....

Southlands Nursery is a walk-in fantasy,
where beauty always comes before profit.

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Established in 1991, and located in a charming 'equestrian pocket' on Vancouver's upscale
westside, this unique area called Southlands is a horse friendly enclave right in the city.
Large lots and small acreages house many stables, and it is not unusual to see horses and their
riders go by our gates. With delicious free coffee always on hand, many people tell us that they
come down to the nursery just to experience the beautiful atmosphere.
We hope you will visit soon!

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According to all my grade school report cards, I never stop speaking!

Here is where I rant/ share/ proselytize about whatever I think is
beautiful/ interesting/ semi-important....

Click on text to vist page
At Southlands Nursery, things are always changing,
and not just with the seasons. We're constantly creating,
searching and bringing in new plants and exciting items
on a regular basis.

Get a sneak peak here or come visit us soon.

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Visiting Vancouver?
Want to order flowers?

Check out this very personal list of some of Thomas Hobbs favourite
Vancouver shops and restaurants you may not otherwise discover.

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Thomas Hobbs own hybrids (and other fabulous varieties) are available in
limited numbers. Hybridizing daylilies has become an absolute obsession....
using cutting edge parent plants from the world's top breeders.

Half the fun is in naming them!

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We will never be a fully online shopping nursery, but from time to time
we'll offer special plants or things.Thomas Hobbs own daylily introductions
will be available for Spring or Fall shipping.

We hope to offer other specialties,
such as own own Nerine hybrids, this way, also.

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The only thing I love more than gardening is sharing that passion with others.
I've had the pleasure of writing 2 books and have been featured in a number of professional
horticultural and gardening magazines. For the past 16 years I've also worked in television on
GlobalBC's Saturday morning news 'Gardening with Thomas Hobbs' segments. The nursery has
been featured on virtually every gardening show including 'The Victory Garden', 'Martha Stewart'
and 'Recreating Eden'. We were even home to 'The Orchid Nazi' on the hit TV show The X Files!

July 25, 2010

A Vine Worth Owning

Filed under: Uncategorized — @ 7:57 pm

       Solanum crispum ‘Glasnevin’ is a wonderful choice for a sunny spot.  This selection was made in  Dublin, Ireland, at the  botanic garden of the same name.  It is really a lax-growing shrub  native to Chile,  that is easily trained to grow up a trellis or  against a wall. Everyone who sees one in bloom somewhere (usually on a tour of ‘open’ gardens) wants one.
       This plant has a very long flowering season, and is rarely out of bloom.  Flowering begins in April and contines on in flushes of gorgeous blue well into November.  The foliage is evergreen, and will only fall if the winter is cold  (for zone8) .  One thing I and others have noticed is that this plant  is relatively short-lived….. about eight years seems its life span. 
        The Solanum family is a huge and varied group of plants, that includes many weeds and  poisonous  species.  It also includes the potato and the tomato !  This particular Solanum does not self-seed, and produces yellow pea-sized fruits that are probably toxic (so don’t eat them).

                     We have them in stock most of the time in a variety of sizes and prices.

                                                                        Solanum crispum ‘Glasnevin’
new 205

July 24, 2010

Hanging Basket vs: Hanging Hideousness

Filed under: Uncategorized — @ 6:24 pm

Hanging heucherella bskt       With the heat of summer upon us, most hanging baskets are needing daily watering and weekly feedings of  a fertilizer like 20-20-20.  Even so, lots are already dried up messes of tortured annuals bewilderingly suspended from eaves and porches.
      I thought about what could be a better solution…. something  that would last .  I chose a beautiful hanging basket with built in candlabra arms, and lined it with fresh green moss. For plants, I avoided the common annuals and used a coppery- hued Heucherella called ‘Sweet Tea’ . This  hardy, evergreen perennial likes shade, with some filtered sun to bring out the brightest colours.  For a bit of trailing /cascading plant material, I used the evergreen Rubus pentalobus ‘Emerald Carpet’ . This tough cookie is a UBC introduction , and in the garden makes a substantial groundcover. In my hanging basket, it will cascade nicely, but stay managable .  A basket like this needs to kept moist . It will probably need a bit less care and water than a ‘normal’ hanging basket as these perennials are both survivors of considerable neglect. 
        So, look at your hanging baskets with a critical eye. If they are looking fried and finished, rip them out of their wire prisons and replant creatively using anything that looks good at this time of year !

July 10, 2010

In My New Garden I Planted…..

Filed under: Uncategorized — @ 11:03 pm

High Summer Planting (2)Summer 2010   

                                                                              Upper photo :

               A very hot, sunny bank hosts David Austin Rose ‘Teasing Georgia’ , which I think is one of the best roses on earth.  I love its long bloom season, colour, fragrance and blousy habit.  Here it is combined with Lavender ‘Provence’, Berberis  ‘Rosy Glow’, Eryngium ‘Sapphire Blue‘, Nepeta ‘Six Hill’s Giant’, and  Achillea ‘Terra Cotta’ against a split rail fence.  All I do is cut things back in the fall, and weed. Nothing receives any water unless it rains. I chose these plants on purpose as they are tough cookies!
          There is a long sweep of this planting, with random ‘repeats’  and a few other toughies like Stipa gigantea  and  the giant form of woolly lamb’s ear (Stachys byzantina ‘Helen von Stein’) randomly thrown in.  The wonderful, single-flowered shrub rose ‘Golden Wings’ is also here, as is ‘Sally Holmes’ , another must-have single-flowered shrub rose.

                                                                                   Lower Photo :

     David Austin Rose ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’ (orangy), Rose ‘Sally Holmes’ (white) with California poppies (Escholtsia) , Stipa gigantea grass and a bit of Lavender ‘Provence’

        It is hard to believe that it has been three years since starting this new garden in Langley, B.C.  Switching  from a mere 7,000 square foot lot  in Vancouver, to 20 acres is quite intimidating , so we are taking it slowly.  It really is landscaping, not gardening . Envisioning the big picture seems to be a natural process that is unfolding itself as we get to know the property. Clearing blackberries is nearly done, a lake has been made, about 200 trees planted, (including 12 Weeping Silver Pears to replicate an olive grove in the distance)  and a few gardens created. My rule is that the plants have to take care of themselves, as I have little time to fuss.  It is much windier, sunnier, hotter and also colder out there. My plants love it !  I took a few photos the other day ( early July) to show you some colour combos I am playing with……

      Sedum ‘Purple Emperor’ and the annual-but-self-seeding Papaver somniferum ‘Lauren’s Grape’ compliment each other colourwise, but also enjoy hot sun and zero upkeep !P.'Lauren's Grape' & Sedum 'Purple Emperor'