Thursday, July 30, 2009

Tropical Green-land

aka Oregon.

On our Daily Dog Walk, my nephew Tigger and I enjoyed the landscaping--frontyard fountains, clematis wrapping a street sign, hidden lawns, banana trees...


Yep. They were a surprise to me too. (We were exiled in SoCal for thirteen long subtropical years before we escaped to the Sierra and somehow I just never contemplated bananas growing above the Forty-fifth Parallel.) Not only did we see banana trees--no actual bananas growing on them, happy to report--but we also saw a bamboo hedge that functioned beautifully as an impenetrable fence and even a palm tree swaying in the breeze at sunset. Either Global Warming is worse than I thought, Oregonians are jonesing for a tropical vacation, or the gardeners up there are adventurous souls pushing the USDA Zone Chart.

Tigger and I were a bit less adventuresome...We planted coleus seeds for him to enjoy outside this summer and inside this winter.

Bananas and palm trees are just to big to bring inside when the snow falls.


  1. Your nephew is a cutie!

    I have never heard of banana trees that far north either. But I was also surprised to discover people can grow peaches in Utah.

  2. Always humming8/03/2009 7:52 PM

    Oregonians, particularly those in the Portland area, do push the USDA zones. Our winters are unpredictable...we can go years without snow or dropping below 28 deg F and then have several winters when the temps regularly drop below 20 and with several days of snow. Every area of a yard has its own microclimate. I have a beautiful Salvia that should never make it through any of our winters but it is against the wall with a southern exposure and it survived last winter without hesitation. Banana trees are iffy but several people manage to keep them year after year. But then, this area grows the nursery stock for much of the country and I regularly supply plants to family (as you know!). I guess that comes with living at the same latitude as England!

  3. Thanks, he's really great!