10/10/2007

Yerba Buena Nursery

The godhead of California native plant nurseries in the Bay Area is a mile down this dirt road off Skyline Road in Woodside.

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The drive is actually more beautiful than that picture indicates. It's more like this.

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It's always very festive here.

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In December, they have Christmas tea lunches. And they have farmhouse teas throughout the rest of the year.

Anyhow, it's a nice place to visit, and especially nice to visit today--the day after the first real fall rain of 2007.

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And, of course, tons of plants.

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Did you know the tallest tree species in the world is endemic to the Pacific coast, from mid-way up California to southern Oregon? This is it in a 1-gallon pot. Sequoia sempervirens, the Coast Redwood.

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(Not to brag, but California also claims the world's most massive trees, and the world's oldest trees--Sequoiadendron giganteum and Pinus longaeva, respectively.)

Anyhow, I didn't come here to buy a big tree.

I came for Monardella macrantha, and I'm taking five of them. I'll donate one or two to the San Francisco Botanical Garden so we can try to propagate it there for plant sales, and I'll keep the others for myself.

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No indication whether this is the one cultivar 'Marion Sampson', or if it's the species, or whether these were propagated from seed or vegetatively from one plant. The woman working the store today didn't know, and the nursery manager is away on vacation for another week. Maybe I'll call back to ask. I'd like to at least try growing this plant from seed. Other species of Monardella are very easy in cultivation, but this one is not. Which is too bad. Because it smells great and the flowers are relatively unusual.

9 comments:

Annie in Austin said...

The nursery looks worth the drive, Chuck, and I'm glad you got some rain.

Good luck with the Mondardella.

Annie

SLH said...

I love that nursery! Visited several times when we lived in the Bay Area; the demonstration garden is worth the trip even if you don't buy anything. One of the downsides to living in Southern California is that the quality of nurseries doesn't hold a candle to those further north. Thanks for the trip down memory lane!
Sharon

Pam/Digging said...

That looks like a cool nursery. Thanks for the tour.

Deviant Deziner said...

Glad to hear that you had a nice time at Yerba Buena.
The road to the nursery looks well maintained.
There was a time about 21 years ago that this road was nearly impassable after a rain.
Many a day ( I lived off of this road up to the left ) I had to put it in 4 wheel drive to get to work down at Filoli Gardens.
Yerba Buena is always worth the trip !

chuck b. said...

The road seemed to be in especially good condition today. I hardly felt like I was off-roading at all. I think they've been doing some upgrades.

mmw said...

Ok, now we're going to have to get serious about pollination. I hope you have your paintbrush ready.

Trey Pitsenberger said...

The last time I visited Yerba Buena Nursery Gerda Isenberg was there! Now that lets you know how long ago that was. She was a legend in the native plant world.

Deviant Deziner mentions working at Fioli. I worked right "next door" at The Phleger Estate, and use to be able to hike up from the estate to the top of Skyline, or sneak over and check out Fioli. Its good to see the nursery is still operating and pulling people down that road.

Anonymous said...

Hi Chuck-
Matt of Yerba Buena, back from vacation. Found your blog via google blogs - thanks for the kind words. Best of luck with the Monardella - it is the Marian Sampson cultivar. A tricky one but worth the struggle. Please introduce yourself when you visit the nursery next!
Cheers//Matt

Unknown said...

The oldest trees in the world, too?
That, my friend, hasn't been proven.
How about those old Cryptomerias in southern Japan. One is said to be ca7000 years old. No one really knows for sure, however..