Greenscape Gardens, part 1

You know the great thing about doing more posts about local nurseries and garden centers? It's a justification for even more springtime visits to nurseries and garden centers than usual! It seems that I've been stopping at Greenscape Gardens every weekend so far this spring, but have not yet done a proper post about it.

So today I remedy that. Like all of the local nurseries in spring, this place gets busy on weekends, so I arrived fairly early on Saturday. The signage is all at the street so I couldn't get a good shot of it, but the brand new butterfly sculpture above the entrance gives you a better introduction to what you'll find here than any sign could.


I like the new structure over the entrance, but would really like to see some vines climbing up it. That would make the butterfly feel more at home I think. How about some annual cypress vine?

Walking in you see the houseplant area:

This part of the nursery is open almost year-round (they close for 6-8 weeks after the 1st of the year or so) and although it's a great place to spend some time on a sunny winter afternoon, I rarely look around here during the growing season. Instead I turn to the right...

...and out into the shade perennials area. Looking right (toward the parking lot)...

...and left toward the perennials for sun (in the background)...

...there are plenty of interesting shade choices other than hostas here.

The large chalked signs are new this year I think, or at least they've added quite a few more.

Very helpful, especially when you get out into the tables...

...where there are plants just packed together. These tables are much deeper than those at Sugar Creek were so there are half a dozen different species or varieties that you'll have to examine before moving on. Although as a plant collector (crazy plant person) I think it's fantastic, but I can see how it can be overwhelming to casual gardeners or those who are new to the world of plants.

That's why the chalk signs are so nice...

There are some plants here that are specimen sized already for instant impact...

...and some that are tiny and relatively inexpensive like these flats of natives:

I have to say that although they don't carry every plant that I'm looking for (nobody does anywhere -- I'm insatiable!) they do have an impressive selection. Take these bleeding hearts (Dicentra) for example...

...I count at least six different varieties here, maybe more. Very nice!

Across the service road from the perennial area is where the shrubs and trees are found:

To be honest I don't go over there very often but do take a walk through once in a while:

I'm usually more interested in the deer resistant plants...

Clay pots are still on the list of things that most deer do not eat

...which has a wide selection of plants but a few questionable choices in it, like Sempervivum:

Deer eat any of mine that are easily available, so serving them up in a bowl is probably tempting fate.

Or this Penstemon, which only flowers in my garden because it's caged:

I saw a deer trying to prune it just yesterday. Deer prune my Clematis too...

Still, I think the "deer-resistant plant house" is a great idea! I learned a few things here too... my Hellebores can be planted out back and will have some chance of survival...

...or that there are alternatives to some of the natives. This Persicaria looks a lot like the native goat's beard (Aruncus dioicus) which deer apparently love (I learned after buying one but before planting).

Walking back to the main perennial area...

...there's a chicken coop out here too!

Nice but difficult to photograph color combo here... I walk toward the back end of the greenhouse. The groundcovers are here, including the Stepables:

And then behind that, where the beacon purple structure is, the main focus of my visits to Greenscape Gardens this year: the Missouri natives!

Remember that many of the Grow Native! plants are found in purple pots? Making this structure purple was a great idea, as it leads you right to the natives -- if you know what you're looking for.

Earlier I said that Sugar Creek has the biggest selection of native plants in the area, but Greenscape may actually have more.

For instance, I didn't see cactus (Opuntia humifusa) at Sugar Creek! You Agave lovers who are reading this might have noticed the Manfreda virginica (aka Agave virginica). Yes, we have a native Agave in Missouri!

The "plant milkweed" craze that started last year continues, and that's not a bad thing.

One thing they have here that Sugar Creek doesn't: larger plants. Yes you can get the natives in 4" pots at both places, but Greenscape has 1-gallon and larger ones too.

They also have native shrubs and trees...

...which Sugar Creek does not. (Or at least Greenscape has a much larger selection than Sugar Creek.)

Another thing Greenscape has that I haven't seen in other places yet...

...are the native "plugs".

At $3.99 these are the least-expensive natives around, but they still seemed a little pricey to me. So I asked around and had a long talk with Jen about natives and how Greenscape is a leader in this area in the industry, working closely with the Missouri Prairie Foundation.

This is when I learned that the "plugs" are priced a bit higher than they maybe should be so that trays of these plugs can be donated to schools and other organizations. In essence we plant shoppers are subsidizing those donations -- nice! There should be a sign explaining that... and apparently there is but it had not been hung yet.

I'm going to end part 1 of this visit here on the natives, and pick up tomorrow with tropicals, edibles, herbs, and more.

Greenscape Gardens is probably my favorite nursery right now, partially because it's one of the closest to my house, but also because of the fantastic variety they carry.

I think I've bought over 20 natives this spring already...


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Mark and Gaz  – (April 28, 2015 at 10:26 AM)  

You got to love a nursery that looks so tidy and well organised, so conducive to shopping!

Gerhard Bock (Succulents and More)  – (April 28, 2015 at 11:39 AM)  

I love seeing what nurseries look like elsewhere. Ours are chock full of flowering annuals and perennials at this time of year--so much color it makes your head hurt. I didn't see that crazy explosion of color of Greenscape, which is not a bad thing!

Alan  – (April 28, 2015 at 12:53 PM)  

Gerhard: that's because you haven't seen the annuals sections yet and the perennials haven't started blooming for the most part. Prepare for colorburst tomorrow!

Mark/Gaz: To be honest I love the messy nurseries too! ;)

danger garden  – (April 29, 2015 at 10:25 AM)  

So why don't you visit the shrubs and trees section more often? Surely you've got room for a few fabulous shrubs? Or is that space better left for more bamboo? Also a native agave? I am impressed! Did you buy one?

Alan  – (April 29, 2015 at 10:51 AM)  

Loree: I don't really have space for anymore trees, and shrubs are difficult because 1) they always seem to get much larger than listed 2) deer. Sometimes I'll get thinking about shrubs though...

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