Stroll through petals along pleasant pathways during garden tour

The Petals and Pathways Home Garden Tour, sponsored by the Master Gardener Foundation of Clallam County, will highlight a variety of garden styles at seven Sequim-area homes from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, June 24.

Tickets, $15 prior to the tour, are on sale from local Master Gardeners and at the WSU Extension office, Airport Garden Center, Green House Nursery and Port Book and News, in Port Angeles; Over the Fence, Peninsula Nursery and Sunny Farms in Sequim, Nash’s Farm Store in Dungeness and Wild Birds Unlimited in Gardiner, and at brownpaperticketstickets.com.

Tickets will be $20 on the day of the tour.

Proceeds from the tour help to maintain local demonstration gardens on Woodcock Road, west of Sequim and Fifth Street in Port Angeles and gardening education programs throughout Clallam County.

For more information, contact 565-2679 or www.mgf-clallam.org.

Owners’ names and their addresses are on the Garden Tour tickets.

1. Surprises in the Garden

One acre of grass was transformed into many separate garden areas in five years. Raised beds were built in the rose garden, sedum area, perennial garden and most of the ornamental garden. The homeowners mix their own soil to combat the clay soil. Lasagna gardening techniques aid in weed control and enhance fertilization. Drip irrigation is used in the dry season. Fences, arbors and trellises are used for climbing roses, wisteria and clematis. Wide paths around and among all planting beds provide easy viewing for people with walkers and most wheelchairs. Water features are tucked in several locations to provide relaxation opportunities. Special surprise — a living room in the garden — blocks the wind and offers shade.

2. Recycled treasures

Mixing a flat grassy backyard, a little ingenuity, a flair for “rustic country” with a passion for plants, the owners fashion an intriguing garden design with botanical and recycled treasures. From conifers to sedums and Japanese maples embellishing their collection, variety and abundance abounds. Creativity mingled with serendipity and whimsy and, the patina of well-loved objects, transform their property and garden beds into vignettes with an outdoor kitchen, potting shed, playhouse, green roofed outhouse, Texaco station and so much more. It’s a visual feast and one of a kind original!

3. Produce galore

Productivity and tranquility on a ¼-acre lot. Drought tolerant perennials and shrubs as well as a hand-painted honeybee hive welcome visitors to the front yard garden. Creative companion plantings of fruits and vegetables and wall hanging pocket planters highlight the backyard. The vegetable garden is watered from an underground cistern system and demonstrates how a small lot can be attractively and efficiently maintained to yield a wide range of produce (even a mini-vineyard). Cherries, an espaliered varietal pear, apples and hazelnut trees are featured in the orchard. The fish pond with a small waterfall adds tranquility to the backyard while the marionberry arbor provides an attractive walkway to the front yard. The diversity in this well-maintained garden showcases what homeowners can accomplish on a small parcel that was a barren, weedy lot in 2010.

4. Spectacular color

An arborvitae hedge provides both a windbreak and privacy at the driveway. The front plantings include spring bulbs, two lovely weeping larches and a 7-foot high tree peony. Featured in the vegetable garden are tomatoes, zucchini, Walla-Walla onions and artichoke. Primroses are tucked beneath blueberry bushes. Over 10 different herbs, including horseradish, marjoram, rosemary, chives, oregano and dill thrive in a small oval bed.

The laurels, spaced along the fence, have taken on a tree-like quality with years of selective pruning. Perennials, biennials and shrubs, including liatris, saxifrage, holly hocks, camellias, burning bush and Callicarpa (beauty bush), provide balance to the garden.

5. Trailing Wonders

A lot can happen in a 12-year-old garden. This one has it all, including over 10 hydrangea varieties, Cascade trailing blackberries (near the garden gate) and a plethora of lilies, peonies, coral bells and vegetables. There are cherry and apple trees, providing ingredients for delicious pies. Spectacular color greets the eye during every season, with Virginia creeper on the fence and a gorgeous Stewartia tree. Hebes, a weeping larch, a corkscrew willow, ceanothus, crocosmia and a Pagoda dogwood add texture, height and color throughout the backyard. Volunteer pansies and violas make for a colorful ground cover. Moisture is provided to the entire garden via a drip system.

6. Curbside Eye-Catcher

This 3-year-old garden is an excellent example of small space gardening that pays attention to seasonal color, texture and water-wise, low-moisture-needing ornamental grasses. There is lots of color in the front yard and a raised concrete patio covered with a pergola in the back. A dry creek bed borders the patio and a small grass lawn is surrounded with plants such as Mexican feather grass, Japanese blood grass, Nandina and ferns. Grape vines adorn the fence.

7. Unique Plantings Galore

This couple, using their experience, creativity and hard work, is creating a new garden as a labor of love — not too big, not too small and packed with color. All the work has been done by the owners, with no professional help building mounds and pathways and installing the irrigation system. They put rocks in wire cages (gabions) to form low terrace walls. Many of the plantings are “sale” plants, with the exception being a large, 60-year-old rose bush that belonged to the homeowner’s mother. Plants include a metasequoia (dawn redwood) tree, “Hot Wings” Tartarian maple tree, Japanese snowbell trees, various grasses, corkscrew willow, Oregon grape, hornbeam, redbud, sunburst locust and many ornamental shrubs such as vanilla strawberry hydrangea. This garden is still new and a work in progress — you will love the homeowners’ appetite for interesting plants.

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