Portland: John Kuzma garden

This weekend was hot and humid and although I did mow the lawn, prune some yews, and chase the deer family out of my garden (one was in the pond munching on water lilies), I didn't see a post materializing out of that. So it's back to Portland from last month's Garden Bloggers Fling!

I'm going through these gardens chronologically, and last time I looked at Scott Weber's Rhone Street Gardens. Today it's another private garden but on a larger scale: the John Kuzma garden.


About two minutes after the bus arrived here, it started raining. Just a sprinkle at first, but after a couple of minutes it turned into a camera-killing shower so we all took cover under the wonderful patio roof and ate lunch, waiting for the rain to let up.

Luckily the view of the back garden from the patio was quite wonderful:

I did get antsy though after a while, and started focusing on the patio details in my immediate vicinity, like this potted plant which was so curvy:

And this spider, dry overhead:

And the shelter itself:

But then the rain stopped (or almost so) and we were unleashed into the gravel-mulched garden:

The back of the garden is raised a few feet from the level of the house, the result being that you can't see most of it from the house. The part closest to the stairs which you can see from the house is very tropical:

As you move through the garden though it changes focus a few times, but beautiful views everywhere:

Parts of it were newly replanted -- I can't remember if this was purely a design decision or as a result of the unusually cold winter and the associated plant damage (or death) that came with it. This central part of the garden primarily, where so many agaves, yuccas, and other spiky plants lived:

That huge urn was a beacon on this gray day!

The blue shed with the yellows of the sedum blooms on the green roof in the background, well, could this vista get any better?

The hummingbirds watched from overhead, wondering how long until they had their garden back:

There were so many agastache and anigozanthos -- no wonder the hummers were a bit annoyed at us!

Most of us were sporting the trash bag/bin liner look. If your camera was underneath (to protect it from occasional drizzle) you'd have a bit of a struggle to take photos (Hi Mark!):

But the struggle was worth it. Try not taking photos here -- bet you can't resist!

Most parts of the garden were mature and pleasingly packed. I forgot to avoid the gunnera at the back of the garden:

Why avoid it? This is one plant that I'm so eager to grow, but it can't take our hot St. Louis summers. I get envious whenever I see photos of it posted, so in person...

Well, it's just too amazing a plant to not see up close! Leaves that are 5' across? Yes please!

If I actually could grow this beasty beauty, I'd put a chair underneath so people could really enjoy it.

Nice that I got several wide shots in this garden, isn't it?

This is the part of the post where I switch to macro (close-up) shots, but since I have so many of them from this garden, I'm going to make you wait until tomorrow to see them. Sorry!

Although the rain made this visit less comfortable, it was still a very rewarding visit: fabulous garden with a fantastic mix of plants!


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Salty Pumpkin Studio  – (August 25, 2014 at 10:12 AM)  

Great post. I saw a lot of plants I'd like to try.
I think a post about how you shoo away dear in your garden might be quite entertaining.

Mark and Gaz  – (August 25, 2014 at 4:13 PM)  

Naughty deer, munching even on water lilies. I was thinking about mentioning the 'official fling uniform' that day whilst reading your post when I saw that photo, made me laugh! Great post on a great garden!

www.ravenscourtgardens. com  – (August 26, 2014 at 9:04 AM)  

Nice recap and the foliage looks so beautiful just washed with rain!

danger garden  – (August 27, 2014 at 11:19 AM)  

Great photos! The benefit of looking at this post a day late is now I can zip right on to Part 2!

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