(This is a 2016 garden description. Gardens for this year’s tour can be found here.)
This diversified garden of hardy plants and environments is also by intention a haven and food pantry for northwest birds.
The gravel garden and rockery on the west side is full of drought-tolerant plants like Corokia cotoneaster, Blue Ice cypress, and rosemary ‘Very Oily,’ a northwest cultivar ideal for cooking, attracting hummingbirds, chickadees, sparrows and finches.
Next to the house is a Harlequin Glorybower, also known as a peanut butter tree because of the distinct nutty scent left behind when the leaves are crushed. The fragrant white blooms are surprisingly irresistible to hummingbirds, as well as butterflies, and bees. Centered in the long north side planter is a peach/orange trumpet vine and at each end is a Moroccan broom. At the end of the wall is a private hot tub surrounded by bay laurel, gingko, and pomegranate. Across the front of the garage is a long trellis supporting white Chinese wisteria.
Visitors may go on the deck for a better view of the main garden with its gravelly meadow, woodland pond, and stream. This area was described as a park-like setting for its prior appearance on the West Seattle Garden Tour in 2004. The area has retained that feeling, but is more open now, and boasts more mature specimens. The scarlet oak near the garage is the largest tree. Magnolia ‘Elizabeth’ occupies center stage. The wedding cake dogwood in the woodland is taking its time, but the owner envisions it will one day be the star of the garden.
Find a vantage point somewhere in this secluded “yard-en” and enjoy a few moments of tranquility.