A link to the Site Index is at the bottom of the page.
Off the beaten path but worth the trip for the plant enthusiast who doesnt mind an untidy landscape. Emphasis is towards shade plants, interesting foliage, and plants of low maintenance needs. Great plants; Interesting selection; Modest prices. What it is: A small backyard nursery striving to introduce interesting plants not often found at the mainstream garden centres. Its the garden of origin of Lobelia cardinalis Summit Snow. The grounds are an informal amalgam of clearings, woodlands and rock outcroppings; display beds and nursery beds are interspersed along winding paths in the woods or around the rather scruffy lawns. This is not a place to visit if you like a manicured landscape or are disturbed by the sight of weeds or unfinished projects, but if you can overlook such things there are a number of gems to be seen! Close to 2000 species and varieties of plants grow on the property. Some native plants are available, including up to 10 species of native ferns. Some trees and shrubs in small sizes, although not an extensive selection. No pesticides or herbicides are used. Mature plants, potted in 1 gallon size or larger, are overwintered in the open. Almost nothing is forced into early performance in greenhouses or coldframes; plants bloom in their natural season. The potting soil mix optimizes root development, overwintering and ease of transplant rather than top growth. These plants can be succesfully transplanted at any time from spring to late fall. A passion for species peonies, and self-supporting forms of the garden peonies, has progressed to the point where some of these plants are about to become available here as well. Look for this nursery to become a significant grower of species peonies over the next several years, including several species which are suitable for woodland gardens. Extensive details about the plants, including cultural information adapted to NS conditions, are provided for all purchases, and not quite so detailed information is presented in the alphabetical listing (by botanical name) here on the website. Starting in 2002, join me on Monday evenings at 7pm for a guided tour of the plants to see what blooms when and what I've got tucked away in out-of-the-way corners. These take about 2 hours. Organized groups can schedule these tours for other times as well.
Mailorder is available to addresses within Canada only.
I figure there are roughly 3 kinds of folks who will want to make use of this site: those just looking for information about some specific plants; prospective customers who intend to make a visit to the nursery; and mail order customers. Depending upon which group you fit into, you might want to leap past all the introductory material and get stuck right into the plant listings, or you might be advised to browse through the introductory stuff before, after or during your review of the plants.
The website is about information rather than about particularily aesthetic presentation. It is essentially is an electronic copy of my paper catalogue, with the addition of photographs. My objective is for it to be broadly accessible to older and newer web browsers, so there are no exciting bells and whistles involved (nor, one might add, any of those annoying bells and whistles). Just words and photographs, and fairly minimal formatting. Boring but effective.
The website was designed and built by the same guy that drives the wheelbarrow, the potting trowel and the database; perhaps that is self-evident. Leo Smit, jack of many trades, master of some (on a good day).
I am one of those who doesn't like looking at crammed print on a computer monitor, so I tend to use larger fonts in the design. Those who like a crowded page can easily select Small or Smallest Font size in their browser View Menu.
I'm also one of those who dislikes waiting around for pages full of pictures to download since I'm on a phone modem, and in any event I resent the increased bandwidth which photos for the sake of pictures represent. So except for one or two page(s), you will not find photos on my pages, but you will find links with which you can open the photos of interest to you. The flower and plant photos are all jpeg format, 360 pixels wide and 360 pixels or less in height, and range in file size between about 11k to 120k. I have not chosen to reduce file sizes by increased compression.
All photos and links to other sites should open in a new window, except the page indexes at the top of each Section and the navigation bar at the bottom of each page. At least that's what I've told the software to do.
All the photographs are my own, taken with a digital camera. The objective is to have a photo or two of every plant in the list, but quite often I am so sure that I already have a photo of something that I never bother to get one! So some of the more common creatures remain without photos. Ideally I would add new photo links to the webpage as the summer progresses and I capture more of these plants in electrons, but realistically it's not too likely that will happen.
Each photo includes a golf ball, or a part of one; in the case of larger objects like a complete large plant a greyish-orange basketball. These are in there to provide a sense of scale; I figure golfballs and basketballs are pretty much universally known even among plant enthusiasts. Really, I don't play golf amongst the flowerbeds (or at all, if you must know). The golfball has the added advantage of making it obvious if a photo is underexposed; if the golfball is grey then the colour of the flower beside it will also be more dull than in real life. And if I were to cheat by trying to make a red look more red or a blue more blue, the golfball will show that extra tint too (but I don't). In some photos I've used the golfball to adjust Contrast and Brightness, but there are some photos where you'll have to make that adjustment mentally. You may also notice in a few instances that the backgrounds of the golfball and the flower are not quite matching. In these instances I've moved the golfball side of the photo over to the flower's side, that's all. (A puff of wind, the flower moves, a gap appears. Simple.) So the scaling indication is still accurate in the edited photo.
You'll also have to excuse the focus (or lack of it) in some pictures; it's a problem with those darned LCD viewfinders and my eyeballs not being able to squint well enough right up close.
Where there is no photo, you can of course use an internet search engine (I use http://www.ussc.alltheweb.com/ ) to try to find a photo; most of the named cultivars can be found, but with some of the species it is somewhat more of a problem!
I haven't incorporated a site search engine here, so your own browser's Search or Find function will probably come in handy if you are looking for certain things. Important hint: the browser's Find function looks only in the last window section you clicked in, so when you click on the Index bar to change pages you have to click your mouse somewhere in the main part of the window (where the changing information is) to make the Find function look in there.
Each plant listing includes all the Common Names that I have come across for that plant, so you can use your browser to find a plant by common name. To make that easier I have added a page of Just Names which lists all the common and botanical names found in the alphabetical listing so you don't have to go through all the pages individually. It'll open in a new window so you can move easily back and forth to the plant listings.
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