U.S.A., Washington State. USDA zone 8b. Sunset climate zone 5

Sunday, February 9, 2014

NWFGS: Dan Hinkley's Several Favorite Plants

On the 7th of February, all eight hundred chairs in the Rainier Room of the Washington State Convention Center were taken. Even more people, who attended the Northwest Flower and Garden Show, were standing along the walls.  Dan Hinkley used two big screens to show his favorite plants. Well, some of his favorite plants. How would you select just a couple of dozen if there were thousands of plants to choose from? Nevertheless, here they are, several of the many plants which are beautiful, reliable and suitable for the Pacific Northwest. In addition to these qualities, many of them were chosen by Dan for the memories he has for certain people, places and circumstances.
We are very grateful to Dan Hinkley for sharing with us, in his own words, 
'25 (or so) plants I will always have in my garden'.
Actually, there were 39 of them which he described with professionalism and passion!
I allowed myself to include some pictures, links and videos.


1. Erythronium revolutum   Glacier Lily
2. Camassia leitchlinii  Quamash
3. Arctostaphylos densiflorus HE McMinn    Manzanita
4. Arbutus menziesii      Pacific Madrone

From China

5. Davidia involucrata,     Dove Tree
6. Magnolia wilsonii,     deciduous and fragrant
7. Sassafras tzumu  Chinese Sassafras
8. Stachyurus salicifolia 'Sparkler'   Winter Spike
9. Hamamelis mollis  Chinese Witch Hazel
10. Hydrangea aspera Plum Passion
11. Hydrangea angustipetala Golden Crane,  fragrant
12. Mahonia Lionel Fortescue
13. Helwingia japonica and Helwingia chinensis ( berries form on leaf blade )

herbaceous perennials

14.Beesia deltophylla, purple new growth, clumping, evergreen, for shade only (See video):

15. Disporum longistylum Green Giant, bamboo like effect to 5' in height, non spreading
16. Cypripedium formosanum, the best terrestrial orchid for use in the PNW
17. Mukdenia rossii Crimson Fans, for moist soils, brilliant red foliage color as summer progresses
18. Corydalis solida George Baker ( brick red flowers, late winter, spring ephemeral)
19. Cyclamen hederifolilum, autumn flowers, winter foliage

From Vietnam

20. Magnolia insignis, evergreen, large pink goblets for a long period in early spring
21. Schefflera alpinia, Hardy Schefflera
(Schefflera taiwaniana from Taiwan )
22. Edgeworthia chrysantha, deciduous 'daphne' used for paper production

In the upper picture is Edgeworthia papyrifera.
Edgeworthia chrysantha is much more winter hardy, below 0 degree F.
Additional information on Edgeworthia is Here


23. Holboellia coriacea 'Cathedral Gem'
24. Holboellia brachandra, white flowers, large edible fruit
25. Aristolochia kaempferi ( clever pollination strategy of 'collecting' living gnats inside flower )

From Australia

26. Grevillea victoriae, winter flowers, hummingbird attracting, orange/red flowers
27. Acacia pravissima, evergreen tender, late winter soft yellow flowers, quick to establish ( see video):

28. Leptospermum scoparium, evergreen, lovely bark, summer flowers of white

From New Zealand

29. Olearia cheesmanii, white flowers fragrant of coconut oil, self cleansing, evegreen (see video):

30. Pseudopanax crassifolius and P. ferox, lancewoods with long narrow foliage with clever protective strategy from predation by Moas

From Chile

31. Embothrium coccineum, Chilean Fire Tree
Drimys winteri 'Pewter Pillar'

32. Gunnera chilensis, Giant Prickly Rhubard ( herbaceous perennials with enormous foliage )

Gunnera in Far Reaches Farm, WA

  33. Lobelia tupa, Red flowers on tall stems, highly attractive to hummingbirds
Good post on Lobelia tupa is in Linda Cochran's Garden blog. 

From South Africa

34. Eucomis pole-evansii, giant pineapple lilly
35. Melianthus major 'Antanow's Blue',  Giant Honey Bush
36. Agapanthus species and cultivars, Lily of the Nile with late summer flowers of rich blue

Agapanthus that came to my garden from Windcliff

37. Dierama pulcherrimum, Wand Flower


38. Rhodocoma capensis, a hardy 'Restio' grass relative with graceful arching stems of evergreen foliage to 5' (photo Here)

From Burma

39. Cymbidium iridioides
Additional information  Here
I certainly will look to add some of these plants to my existing collection.

***Copyright 2014 TatyanaS


  1. I so wanted to attend this lecture (and all of the NWFGS) but the snow and ice here in Portland kept me at home. Thank you for the fabulous recap!

    1. Hi Loree! We got a lot of snow on the 8th and 9th, but it's melting and, I guess it's nothing in comparison with what you got!

  2. And thank you for sharing this wonderful list with us!

  3. It should be an absorbing lecture if someone talk about it with solid professionalism and passion...!

  4. Thank you for posting this! glad to see the names of several plants from my own garden.

  5. I let another year roll around without making it to Seattle for the Flower and Garden Show. Thank you so much for sharing with us. I can see you put a lot of time and effort in this and am looking forward to seeing all of the videos and websites you have included along with the photos of your own garden. I've heard Dan speak before and enjoyed it very much.

    1. Hi Karen! I do appreciate your note! Hope to see you at the NWFGS next year!

  6. Wow, there are so many plants here that I've never heard of. Some would grow in my garden, but many would not. Still, I want to learn more about them just because I'm curious. Thanks! I remember being fascinated with Gunnera when I saw it at Kew Gardens in London.

    1. Thank you Beth! I'm wondering if my brand new Gunnera will survive after our recent cold temperatures.

  7. I wonder how these plant explorers remember all these name? I could not even pronounce many of these names. So much information out there and so many different plants. I took down some notes while watching those video.

    1. KL, thanks! Some names are tricky... Practice, practice, practice...


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