Sunday, December 14, 2008

Nursery Crawl #3

Here we are...the hosts to this rambling adventure, two fruits and a nut however you want to read it is up to you. Randy said this picture makes my butt look fat, I think Terry looks like an's his ball cap though. We began the last crawl with a visit to Miguel's Imports on Burnet you can see, the day is gorgeous so you know it was last week...we haven't seen the sun in awhile.

The gates are impressive, you may remember this place, it used to be downtown off 5th.

They have really nice patio art and furniture, the prices are very reasonable and there are some good buys up until the first of the year!

60% off whitewashed, unfinished pots! I didn't catch a shot of them but they have a large selection of chiminea's...better prices than Home Depot and Lowe's.

They have both folksy-rough and finished sculpture as well as metal work for collectors.

Randy and Terry are there in the back...they're looking for perfectly round pots with holes in the top...they had them but not big enough...

The second stop proved to be the best deal for me. Shoal Creek Nursery is just off Shoal Creek road on Hancock next to the Cemetery...a free source of rock by the way. Things tend to be pricey here but I found a Japanese Maple for $15! It was small...quart sized... I've never seen a price like that. They had several varieties ranging up to $160.

There are several ponds but I didn't notice a lot of water plants for sale. Note to self: check out the watergarden place up in Cedar Park.

Beautiful annuals and indoors a huge selection of fresh greens for Christmas, awesome decorations, tools and fertilizer and other pretty stuff.

Just another view facing North. They are having a sale on pottery as well, 50% off selected items...every color!

The owners live in Louisiana and truck the plants over from there, though a lot are grown right here. Everything looked healthy and happy and I've never had a problem with anything I've purchased.

This is Jerry, he was very knowledgeable and helpful!

That's as far as we got before the boys were mooing about food! So, this again, was Randy's choice "El Azteca" at 2600 East 7th Street.

As you can see it's got a colorful interior and the guys a were thrilled that we could get a pitcher of Margaritas. Everyone enjoyed their meal. I had the mole which was okay, but the charro beans were wonderful...until the next day that is.

They served us each a scoop of sherbet which is so old school and delightful. They have a huge selection of Mexican homemade candies and 2009 calendars at the checkout. We all got a calender, the images drawn or photographed have an aged appeal and the illustrations are classic...$3.50, you can't beat that for a stocking stuffer!

Terry gave it a thumbs to the side, and you can tell that Randy took most of the Margaritas, we haven't found a place that Randy doesn't think is "the best!"

Randy and Terry came across this little place on the East Austin Studio Tour earlier this month. It's called "The Utility Research Garden" as seen on the sign we saw propped up against a wall someplace inside. No one was there to help us, so we helped ourselves. We later found the owner on-line and realized that it's by appointment only, ooops!

They have a lot more for sale than just bamboo, whether you're in the mood for shopping or not, this place is worth a visit. It's uber creative with lots of whimsical visual art. Part of the property and grounds are available for rent.

This is the patio off the main building which currently houses a group of screen printers, we found their work yesterday at the Blue Genie Art Sale at the Monarch Center near Highland Mall, another great place for stocking stuffers and fine art.

I love industrial composition...someone is really scared of having their wheel barrels stolen!

This is what I mean by creative...checkout this mounded composition, and I don't know how old these pines were but they were luscious, I just had to scooch into the center, it was a super hiding place!

This is the side of the front building, everything is so detailed and all the doors gorgeous!

This cracked me up...looks like two guys at the urinals!

This is one of many window holes throughout the property.

These doors are gigantic! I'd really like to know who designed the place and where they got all this cool stuff!

One of a few greenhouses, notice the short wall, I just took a few shots of the walls and some of the details...there were succulents growing out of the cracks and fragments of finished art and found objects mortared into the spaces.

It's funny how all the nurseries are pulling out the's hard to find red in the summer.

I just loved this sign and abandoned sink station outside.

Here's an up close image of an area of the wall behind the greenhouse.

I had to include a few shots on the sepia setting...none of my shots are toyed with, I don't have photo shop...yet. I'm still trying to understand my camera and everything it can do!
I almost missed this above my head because I was so entranced by the wall and everything there was to see on the ground!

I love greenhouses! We couldn't find prices or help, but you can check out the website and make an appointment. It was mostly succulents, agave's, grasses, some trees, and lots of cacti.
Oh yea, Bamboo of course.

Super ideas everywhere you looked.

I'm falling in love with mounded plantings and have been planing one in my backyard for some time now. It was a magical feeling and provided such relief from the dreary Tillary Road that it was like stepping through an enchanted doorway into an eclectic Shangri-la.

I couldn't catch the butterflies, they were jumping around so fast but this mist flower was huge and teeming with insects!

On our way out we just had to play a bit in the little bamboo forest. The wind was slightly blowing and the dancing shadows made it a perfect reprieve. All we needed after a pitcher of Marg's was a hammock!

Not far up the street on Tillery is Ted's Trees.

I don't know what else to say, they had everything.

You have to drive to the back of the property to park and make your way through the jungle to find the office.

I guess I should clarify and say that they have everything except affordable tiny trees like my bargain of the day from Shoal Creek. I've been on the hunt for bare root fruit trees that should be available now but no one had any or had any idea when they would be coming in.

Lousey shot I know, but I just love Arizona Cypress and wish I could find a tiny one for my backyard. This baby was pretty big and too rich for my budget.

The sky was so blue and the berries on this China Berry reminded me of something Vincent VanGogh would have painted. When I got my house, we had a huge one in the back that split a few years ago. I've been trying to kill it ever since. It's a horribly invasive species and spreads by way of the birds...and unlike Nandina, you just can't remove the berries on a 30 foot tree.

As you can see, Ted's Trees offers more than just trees. There were several fields with large pots of shurbs and this one exposed greenhouse. Ted's is family owned and started as a wholesale nursery but they now sell to the public. They are just 2 miles east of downtown and were recently voted "Best Inner City Paradise" by the Chronicle, I may need to give them the heads up on The Utility Research Garden though!

We're adding another friend to the mix next week...Happy Gardening!


Bonnie said...

I'm tracking you guys. I don't know whether I like the tales of the plants or the tales of the quest for margaritas better!

ConsciousGardener said...

Awesome! You should join us sometime! Nice to see your sunny face Bonnie!

Pam/Digging said...

Still enjoying your expeditions. I'm on the hunt for a couple of small 'Blue Ice' Arizona cypresses too. I found one a few weeks ago at Natural Gardener, a 5 gallon size that was under $20. They had a couple of 'Carolina Sapphires' too, I think, but I'm looking for 'Blue Ice.' If you don't mind the difference, you might call to see if they still have them.

inadvertentfarmer said...

Wow, what a fun field trip! It is so interesting to see how different nurseries look in different parts of the country. Here in W. Washington it is all about evergreens, rhodies, azaleas and hosta! It is fun to see all the different plant material you have down there. I also bet your Mexican is way closer to authentic than we could ever get up north! Kim

ConsciousGardener said...

I'll check it out Pam...I'm not sure what the difference is?? Thanks for the homework assignment:)

Lori said...

Dude, there's so much cool stuff in this post that I don't even know where to start! Though I do have to say that I think my favorite pic was the cactus urinals. I didn't see it till you said it, and now I can't see anything else! Heehee.

I especially liked the Utility Garden section and that greenhouse wall. If anyone wants to organize a jaunt out there so that they're open, I'm totally game. And then we could get margraitas, since you guys make me thirsty every time I read about your nursery treks. ;D

And as always, I'm taking notes on places I now need to visit!