Ligularia with a tail to tell

Our anthropomorphic cat, Jasper decided this nearby Ligularia japonica would make a fine parasol substitute when siesta-time arrived on a recent bright sunny day..

Rocking and Rolling in the Winter Garden

If you’ve visited JLBG, you know how much we love working with rocks, so we continue to find new areas to plant more. We’ve recently tackled two long overdue projects near the Mt. Michelle waterfall.

The first was re-working the Mt. Michelle watercourse we know as Mystic Creek (named after one of our late cats). When this was installed in 2003, we used concrete to form the water channel. Well, after 18 years, tree roots had their way with the concrete, which lost both the battle and the war.

After a fair amount of root excavation work, Jeremy and Nick installed a new rubber liner, with rocks along the edge. We’ll probably wait until spring to finish the replanting in order to avoid planting on top of something that was winter dormant. Below is the new rocked watercourse.

Phase 2 of the project was re-working an adjacent bed, where light levels had changed dramatically since it was installed in 1998. Originally a full sun bed, the shrubs on the west side have grown substantially, leaving us with a bed that only gets 3-4 hours of sun on one end, and a full shade area underneath the canopy.

Here, we raised the center of the bed, with more of Jeremy and Nick’s rock work, which was then filled with our on-site created compost. This created a visual barrier to much of the winding path that visitors use to get closer to the small plants, which are now tucked in the crevices.

One the back (west) side, Jeremy and Nick installed another small rock seating area, of which there are never enough.

There are a few more days of rock work to complete Phase 2, then we’ll start on Phase 3, which will rework the west face of Mt. Michelle, with more boulders to create additional planting pockets. We hope you’ll check out the progress at our upcoming winter open house.

Blues Brother Bookends

Most garden visitors have never met our two indoor cats, but we couldn’t resist sharing this recent photo of Jake and Elwood posing as bookends. The Spinx statues ain’t got nothin on these guys. Both arrived a few years ago as adoptees after being found abandoned and thrown in a nearby river.

Furry JLBG visitor greeters

If you’ve been to visit JLBG, you’ve probably met some members of our welcoming committee. If not, it’s been a while since we introduced you to our furry-tailed staff. You can meet them during our Summer Open Nursery & Garden Days, July 16-18 & 23-25, 2021.

Jasper is our elder statesman, and has mastered the art of plopping down in the garden for a nap without disturbing tags or plants. Jasper needs a lot of rest, since he follows tours for hours through the garden, thinking he’s a dog.

Jasper

Henry adopted us from the home of a former neighbor. Of the three that you are most likely to encounter during a visit, Henry is the most aloof/standoffish of the three. Henry also seems to always be “on edge”, perhaps because Jasper is always looking to pounce on him. We’ve threatened to put him on kitty Prozac if he doesn’t learn how to lighten up and smile.

Henry

Kit Kat is a recent addition to our furry family and our only female feline. She loves a belly rub and will often be found by open house visitors on her back awaiting a willing set of hands. Kit Kat is the pudgiest of our three, having failed twice at Weight Watchers. We hope you’ll gently engage our greeters when you visit.

Kit Kat

Our most recent addition is Buddy, who was a stray that had been adopted by our neighbor, the late plantsman, Alan Galloway. Along with many of Alan’s plants, we also adopted Buddy. Buddy does a great job keeping Alan’s spirit alive in our garden, although he is the shiest of our felines.

Buddy

And then, there’s Foxy Lady, below. Foxy Lady just gave birth to four kits which live in a drain pipe here on site. Buddy leaves leftovers for her when he’s finished his evening meal. If you’re lucky enough to catch a glance, it will no doubt be a fleeting one.

Foxy Lady

Catatonic in the Garden

I’ve discovered that after everyone leaves at the end of each day, Jasper sneaks down to our patch of Kitty Crack (aka: Teucrium marum) and takes a few hits…for medicinal stress relief purposes, I’m sure. Kitty crack is sooo much better than catnip!

The Real Cats of JLBG

Today is National Black Cat Appreciation Day, so we would like to recognize past and present nursery cats of JLBG. If you’ve visited the gardens during open house and gardens, you have, no doubt, met some or all of our family of cats over the years.

Henry and Jasper are the current reigning Nursery Cats of JLBG! Meet them at our 2019 Fall Open Nursery & Garden Days.