Saturday, October 9, 2010

Native Beauty

The last few weekends have been all about gardening for me and Erik.  We knew autumn will be time for the last of our major landscaping efforts in the front yard.  There were shrubs to plant and a rain garden to build (a bioswale of sorts to catch all the roof runoff).  I like gardening, but it’s been a big year for us, and I am SO happy that we will mostly be doing maintenance starting next year (and enjoying the fruits of labors, too!).
For the rain garden in particular we wanted to use native plants, so that meant a trip down the highway to West Linn (suburb of Portland) to visit Bosky Dell Natives.  I had an idea of the sort of magic we’d encounter here from Abby’s post earlier this year, but Bosky Dell is really the sort of place you just have to visit in person.
Besides being the nursery for Oregon natives, it’s a real treat to tour the grounds with the owner, Lory.  She’s passionate about plants, nature, and habitat restoration, but as an artist, she’s also realized an amazing personal vision for her house and the many outbuildings on her property.  Using salvaged building parts, she’s worked with a local carpenter to create a bohemian retreat amongst her thousands of plants.  From a distance, the turquoise buildings fade into the background, but up-close, Lory’s love of old wood, chippy paint, wrought iron, and old tin ceilings can be found at just about every turn. Here are a few pictures of her house:
Walking through the property, she's fashioned false-fronts onto her nursery greenhouses using old barn lumber and salvaged parts from vintage buildings.  And the customer check-out is in a retro trailer!

Behind Lory's house are two of my favorite buildings: a little stuccoed pump house and a garage/studio made from an impressive collection of old wood:
There is a cozy room off the back of the garage and a private garden, all connected with old Victorian doors:
Meeting Lory and hearing her stories about creating Bosky Dell was a great inspiration for me.  She’s the type of artist I inspire to be--one that really trusts her instincts and continues to dream big even when people may think her ideas are a little crazy.  Her property reflects her personality and her passions through and through.  I highly recommend a visit!