Monday, December 6, 2010

Hurrah for Chelsea!

Chelsea Nursery

It is small, tough, dusty and glorious. Just like many plants in the desert that they collect, propagate, and grow themselves. So few Nurseries actually grow their own plants- a severe minority, I think. (More commercially-minded institutions have abandoned much of the actual art of horticulture to buy plants from growers and sell them through a well-developed retail face. One should shun this if one is of the current trend of buy-local and buy-from-mom-and-pop-businesses. These smaller businesses so often have better expertise and products. This is true, unsurprisingly, for Chelsea Nursery. The success of more commercially-oriented institutions is due to us, the consumer, seeking cheap plants. And that is what we've gotten. Cheap plants. And vendors who are clueless or dispassionate... And a sadder selection of plants.
Go support you Local (LOCAL) Businesses.
Like Chelsea.

To spare myself writing their history, here is a link to the article that describes them winning an award for their efforts- a measurable refreshing success that nourishes the dream of sustenance and humility that we have all felt, or been told, was the answer to our hyper-consumption woes.

Thier front garden, which is watered once or twice. Per year. You know, even Cactus like a drink on the Fourth-of-July.
Yes. All of these pictures are in November and December. Ugly times of year? If you think so, I should hope to point out all the colours that aren't green and textures that aren't leafy.
Even the autumn colours of these young plants are worth the picture.

An ingenious pot-in-pot tree growing area that allows them to sell and plant trees in the summer heat, as well as preserve the roots of the trees which otherwise fry in their little black solar-oven pots in other nurseries, often unnoticably weakening plants that are sold to the public! I am sorry I spend so much electronic ink attacking other nurseries rather than talking good about Chelsea. I'll let the pictures do that.
Cactus spines are the colour provider in winter.
Buy native, grow native-
And be as happy as this fella.

Splendid Bits from here and there

Fading Rabiea albipuncta flower in the greenhouses at Timberline Gardens, Arvada. This is an outdoor plant.

Opuntia sp. in Denver Botanic's Dry Mesa Garden, a garden which was begun the year I was born.

Looking down on outer Palisade from halfway up Mt. Garfield.

Oenothera caespitosa on Mt. Garfield turning purple for the winter

Hirpicium armerioides

Morning Snow in Rough Canyon

A ladybug on a Belamcanda seed head