joy creek spring

Beautiful spring days have been few and far between this year, so when last Saturday dawned bright and clear, I knew it was time to head for Joy Creek Nursery.

An early visit allows one to focus on emerging plants like this Rogersia. Sorry, I failed to make a note of the full name, but I will be back to see if it maintains the wonderful bronze tones it is showing early in its cycle. If so, I must have one of these.


No slug damage on these emerging Hosta leaves, and the light was just right to emphasize the dance created by their veining.

muscari macrocarpum ‘golden fragrance’

And speaking of dancing foliage, get a load of this clump of Muscari macrocarpum ‘Golden Fragrance’. It is always a learning experience to see how they do things here. I have been wanting some of these, and now I will order up a small amount and plant them all in a clump, like this, rather than spreading them out.

berberis lologensis

The almost needle-like leaves of Berberis lologensis stay on the plant through the winter. Its flowers are more prominent than those on most barberries.

bamboo structure

When you have a nice bamboo grove like the one at the entrance to Joy Creek, the bonus is plenty of material to build structures like this.


Vignettes of conifers have kept this garden interesting all winter. Now they take more of a supporting role as the divas begin to take the stage.

pruned rhodys

I have written often about the way they have limbed up the huge Rhododendrums around the house, so I thought I should show you what they look like. Quite an improvement over the way they so often are allowed to become big, dark blobs of leaves in foundation plantings around town.

metal sculpture

Several of these metal sculptures do their part to keep things interesting.

arcostaphylos densiflora ‘Harmony’

This was not primarily a shopping trip, but after all the hospitality shown me it would have been downright rude to leave empty-handed. I have been wanting a Madrone to add to my evergreen drive, so right after I leave you, out I go to plant this Arctostaphylos densiflora ‘Harmony’. Oh, and about that hospitality…if you go on a weekend, they make the best chocolate chip cookies!

9 Responses to “joy creek spring”

  1. Loree/ danger garden Says:

    I was there on yesterday, and took some of the same pictures you did! And I love that Manzanita, it’s the very same one I bought there last year.

  2. Grace Says:

    Joy Creek is on my radar for this summer. Thank you for the pictures and virtual tour. Good luck with that awesome Manzanita.

  3. ricki Says:

    Loree~How is that Manzanita doing? I was counseled to pinch back the tips to get it growing up rather than sprawling.

    Grace~Try to allow a little extra time when you plan your Joy Creek visit, and I’ll have you over for tea and crumpets.

  4. Loree/ danger garden Says:

    ricki, really? Well that just makes me happy…because it just so happens that I pinched back the tips over the winter, when it was frozen and I got all paranoid and tried to wrap it up to protect it and intead broke the tips. Ya, that’s how good I am…

  5. ricki Says:

    Loree~Don’t you just love it when you accidentally do the right thing?

  6. Wendy Says:

    pretty pretty stuff!! and cookies too?!

  7. ricki Says:

    Wendy~Yes, real homemade chocolate chip cookies with walnuts.

  8. Scott Says:

    Great post…love that clump of Rodgersia, such an absolute stunner! I always enjoy going out to Joy Creek…really is my favorite nursery in the PDX area…and the display gardens are a big part of that.

  9. ricki Says:

    Scott~Yes! The gardens are worth a visit any time of year, and it is hard to come up with a question the staff can’t answer.

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