Tucked away in the northern outskirts of Salem is a garden and nursery that focuses on just a few plant types – Hosta, Ferns, and Epimediums. While that may seem somewhat limiting, they have hundreds of varieties of each! They also appear to be branching out into Iris going by the number they have planted and for sale.
Nestled on a 34 acre estate, with over 4 acres of display gardens and some new areas being created, you can not only see them growing but they join a wonderful array of other trees, shrubs and perennials, plus plenty of bulbs. And everything is impeccably labelled. Thank you!
Strolling the grounds
Visiting at the beginning of May, everything was fresh and green, even if they perhaps still had a little growing to do. There was a new extension to the display gardens that was still under construction (or being renovated, not sure which) and many of the plants in there were small at the moment. There were certainly some choice plants in there and I can’t wait to go back when it is more mature.
The area around the house was a lot more mature, probably laid out when it was a homestead. The slope is terraced with grass paths running along the length. A large 10-sided gazebo provides a nice rest and place from which to contemplate their achievement.
The nursery sells many of their plants plus a whole lot more, so you can construct an entire shade garden. It is the Hosta tunnel that is the most impressive and, truth be told, overwhelming. When you see so many varieties, they start to blend in, and it becomes difficult to discern which ones you like more than the others. Thanks fully, on this trip I was not in the market for Hostas, but ferns.
And here is my one and only niggle. The ferns were organized by common name. Why? It makes no sense. If organized by species (and there are almost no named hybrids and very few cultivars) then you get to see the similarities and differences between them, making it much easier to compare. I almost missed one fern I was looking for because they had given it a common name that I had never heard of.
I certainly came away with more than I had intended to buy, and thoroughly enjoyed by stroll around their gardens.
Plan a visit
Sebright gardens are open from April through to October and you can find them at 7185 Lakeside Dr NE, Salem, OR 97305. They often host the Salem Hardy Plant Society sale in September which is also worth putting on your calendar.