Bloom Time

Spring is here! Everywhere I go, I see mounds of brilliant yellow daffodils and smell the sweet fragrance of Daphne. After such a drab, gray winter, I am ready for some color. Luckily, we have a number of local parks and gardens where I can easily see flowers in bloom throughout the growing season. If you also enjoy flowers and gardens, here are nine near-by locations to explore. If you plan well, blooms from these gardens and parks should take you through spring and well into summer. All of … [Read more...]

Holiday Lights at Shore Acres State Park

This year over 325,000 lights have been strung at Shore Acres State Park in Charleston as part of their 29th annual Holiday Lights. What began as simply stringing a "few strands of lights" in the formal garden has since become a community tradition. This year organizers expect to draw 40,000 to 50,000 visitors. Although I had heard about the Holiday Lights before, it wasn't until I talked with Shirley and David Bridgham, the co-chairs of the event, that I realized that this is entirely a walk … [Read more...]

Hinsdale Rhododendron Garden: Reedsport

Earlier this month we headed to Reedsport to experience something new, the O.H. Hinsdale Rhododendron Garden. Located 3 miles east of Reedsport on Highway 38, the garden is currently being restored by a joint partnership between the BLM and the “Friends of Hinsdale Garden.” This hidden treasure was a labor of love for one man, O. Howard Hinsdale. Saved from demolition in the late 1990s, over 700 of the original plants in this garden have since been identified. And, while the garden is beautiful, … [Read more...]

Hendricks Park: Rhododendrons

Recently, I took the opportunity to spend time at Hendricks Park in Eugene. It has been years since I’ve been to the Park and even longer since I’ve been there during peak bloom. I wasn’t disappointed during my early morning stroll along the gravel paths: the birds were singing, the sun was shining, and the light, spicy fragrance of rhododendrons and azaleas filled the air. For the most part, I had the paths to myself, so I took my time with my camera and tripod. My goal on this trip was … [Read more...]

Heather Garden

Tucked into a bend in the road near the Cottage Grove Community Hospital is Cottage Grove’s own Heather Garden. Planned and maintained by the Oregon Heather Society, the heather garden is inspiration for anyone interested in growing heathers, and I’ve always found it to be a bright spot regardless of the time of year. Heathers are small, evergreen shrubs which are also sometimes called “heath” (if you would like to know the difference between heather and heath, Genevieve at North Coast … [Read more...]