A Rare Plant Specialty Nurseryin Port Townsend Washington
Sue Milliken & Kelly Dodson, proprietors
What's New at The Farm - April 5 - Happy Easter! Well, we're a little tired but happy after a busy first open weekend here at the nursery. It was great to see familiar plant friends again as well as make some new ones who have not been out before. It is always fun to see people get excited about plants. We will be open from now on Th-Sat 10-4and will be loading the tables each week with new goodies.
The big news is our Killdeer couple is back (8 years in a row) and have been........Read more....
The Skinny on Far Reaches Farm
Welcome to our online store and hope you
find many of the rare plants offered as fun as we do. We’ve been collecting, growing and learning
about plants all our lives and the excitement has simply grown with time and we
look forward to sharing our phytomaniacal obsession with you. There are worse things to be afflicted with
than gardening. Take a moment and read some of the categories to your left on this page like "About Our Plants" for example so you know what to expect.
We have many more plants available here at the nursery that are not listed on our online store. Many are too large or don't ship easily or are in small quantities or we just haven't managed to get them up on the website. If we just didn't need to sleep, we could get more done. The nursery is not open all the time so check our hours and open days.
We propagate and grow most of our plants
ourselves which allows us to grow many more impractical species than we should. Many times people shy away from a rare plant thinking it is hard to grow, but more often, it is difficulty of propagation or simply not fitting into a standard nursery routine that makes a plant rare in commerce. Of course, not all of our plants are uncommon - that would be leaving out way too many good ones such as some of our favorite herbaceous genera like Trillium, Meconopsis, Podophyllum, Paeonia, Paris, Heloniopsis, Crocosmia and then the woody genera like Sorbus, Styrax, Magnolia, Decaisnea, Hydrangea and the like.
We will be adding new plants frequently so do check back.
We continue to enjoy the response from our customers - thank you! Here are a few of the comments we have received:
order(s) today. My plants arrived beautifully packed,
healthy, and surprisingly large. Thank you Far Reaches Farm!” – B.
H. North Carolina
“I received my plants this morning and what fine ones they
Thank you, too, for the bonus
Iris. I will certainly sing your praises among the plant groups I
belong to and, rest assured, I will be ordering from you again.” – RH – Colorado
Thank you, thank
you for your beautifully wrapped plants that made their way to Montana bursting with
vibrance and energy!” – LS – Montana
“This is my second order
with you. Your plants in my first order were large, healthy and very well
packed. I greatly appreciate doing business with you, and look forward to
more in the future. I understand you recently started offering plants
online mail order, it is great to have you as a resource for these beautiful
and rare plants. Keep up the great work, and know that you have a very
pleased and happy customer.” AO -
“I received my plant order yesterday. I just want to say I
am so excited by the wonderful condition of the plants and the excellent
shipping conditions you provided! You did a wonderful job of
packing. The plants are in beautiful condition and are so healthy.
I also want to thank you for the bonus plant! I didn’t expect that so it was a
wonderful surprise. I will certainly recommend your mail order
KD -- Washington
“you have sent me the finest mail-order plant material I
have ever received. Am spreading the word among all the Connecticut gardeners I know.”
RK - Connecticut
Large Band Pot This repetitive lauding of our friend Jim Fox for bringing us cool Asters from the UK could become wearisome and we promise to stop after just a few more. This selection of Aster ericoides was granted the Award of Garden Merit by the Royal Horticultural Society and in the UK this is the horticultural equivalent of being knighted. We are unlikely to be knighted anytime soon but we can have this distinguished Aster in our gardens. This is a lower and bushier plant getting just 3 feet high but that 3 feet is a glorious billow of thousands of small light pink flowers in the fall once it reaches maturity. When shipped in the fall, we'll need to cut this plant back.
4" Pot Perennial Impatiens. Apricot yellow pouchy flowers in late summer enliven the already vibrant foliage of this hardy Chinese species. A good spreader so give it some room. Judith McLoughlin in Victoria combines this beautifully with Filipendula ulmaria 'Aurea' or at least she did at one point in the past as her gorgeous small garden is anything but static.
Medium Band Pot Moon Carrot. Freakishly good plant with gray-blue leaves with an impressive mid to late summer branched inflorescence sporting compound umbels touched in pink then maturing white. Plant nerdishness meets high-end design with this one. Immediate full disclosure - this is biennial but reseeds so do not fear. Good drainage is key such as a sandier soil.
Large Band Pot In the Solanaceae or 'Tater Family, this deciduous perennial gets many stems that start blooming almost upon emergence in early spring with thimble-shaped chocolate flowers that are yellowish on the inside. Very cool. This likes part sun and is broader than tall at 2' x 3'. It has a nice little overlap with some of the black flowered Hellebores as it is really coming into its own as they are starting to tail off so there is a clever couple of weeks at least.
4" Band Pot Himalayan Blue Poppy. Few plants capture the imagination and fire a lust to possess to the extant this fabled perennial does. Our 'Lingholm' strain is one of the best of the Blue Poppies and certainly one of the most reliably perennial. We never tire of seeing this in bloom with its large flowers of a good medium blue or of hearing the exclamations of delighted wonder from gardeners of every skill level. There is something about this that is magic and our sympathies if you live where this cannot be grown which is about anywhere it gets hot and/or humid in the summer. This Meconopsis is not an Oriental Poppy. Forget we said the word 'Poppy' because everything that makes an Oriental Poppy happy will surely kill this aristocrat. Think cool. moist, part shade, what is going to make my Primrose happy? and you will be on the right track. This is going to be difficult south of northern New England unless you have a cool microclimate. Forget about Kansas although we have heard good reports from higher elevation in Colorado. We've seen the parent species of this hybrid at 12000' in eastern Bhutan and 10000' in Yunnan both in stable moss-covered boulder slopes which never dry. This appreciates a partly sunny to bright dappled shaded position with good loose organic soil that drains yet doesn't dry out. Acid soil and it doesn't like heat and it does need a winter so it can go dormant. A small percentage will bloom and die - that is just the roll of the Blue Poppy dice and part of the mystique. This strain is much less prone to that plus you have viable seed with which you can start new ones if that does happen. That said, the 'Lingholm' selection in general cultivation has been so diluted by generations of seed-sowing that the Royal Horticultural Society is calling this strain Meconopsis Fertile Blue Group to denote that it is a tall blue flower producing fertile seeds. But what really matters is that these have no peers as there is truly nothing to compare. Young, sturdy plants which will establish very nicely in the garden.
Small Band Pot A treasure for the rock garden or trough, this jewel of a species is native to Europe growing in crevices on rock cliffs. It likes good drainage but not too dry so add some fine gravel or sand to your planting mix. We've found it to be quite easy growing it in full sun and it often reblooms later in the year. It has actually been one of our most care-free of all of our Primulas. Unlike a lot of true alpines, this seems to tolerate our regular overhead watering in the nursery.
4" Pots Interesting and showy Japanese species that makes tidy little evergreen clumps. This is a just too darned slow to ever make it a viable plant for mainstream nurseries but it so worth the wait. So of course we love it! Unusual lavender-pink flowers held well above the foliage. These will slowly increase to make one sweet little grouping. Good moist soil in shade. The whole clan appeals to us beyond reason - Helonias and Ypsilandra are stellar relatives. We have a few very chunky plants we've kept for propagation but now that we have enough in the pipeline, these stalwarts are expendable. It's tough love here at The Farm but we know you'll do right by them.
Quart Pot Rare in cultivation, this form from NW India of this Solomon's Seal is mainly an epiphytic species growing in mossy trees and on mossy, humus covered rocks. The speckled pale pink flowers hang as small bells as the new growth elongates and as the season progresses, the flowers turn into attractive red fruits. In frost-free areas, the fruit-bearing stems overwinter and overlap the flowering of the next year's growth which is very charming. This is an evergreen species in mild areas and is some years for us but of late has been deciduous due to cold winters with no ill effects. It has done very well in our raised shade beds and this is another plant we mulch in the fall as a winter precaution. Good drainage.