I'm happy to say that one of my plants was chosen as a winner in the 2016 Plant Select Program from Denver Botanic Gardens and Colorado State University.  These plants are selected by a panel of professionals after trialing various plants in their … [Continue reading]


People often have trouble growing blueberries in Spokane, but it is really pretty easy.  They are plenty hardy if you grow the ones we sell.  The trick is having the right soil conditions.  Even in Portland where they are grown commercially, it is … [Continue reading]

‘Ketchup and Fries’ Hybrid Tomato/Potato

OK, we grow a lot of great tomatoes at Tower.  The best new hybrids and the best of the heirlooms.  But this year there's something new on the tomato table.  'Ketchup and Fries' grows clusters of red sweet tomatoes the size of cherry tomatoes in long … [Continue reading]

Petunia ‘Night Sky’

I would not normally write a blog on a particular petunia, but I think this one is pretty special.  I can't really say why, but this one has just the right amount of variegation and uniqueness for my taste.  There are lots of striped petunias, and … [Continue reading]

Tips for you, Tips for us

There are 2 new developments at the nursery this spring.  First, when I was replacing some worn signage, I added a sign to one of our tables called "Staff Picks".  If you get a plant from that table, you'll be certain that we have found it to be a … [Continue reading]

Opening the Garden 2016

If you're a reader of this blog, you may recall that the British term for the spring cleaning of the garden in preparation for the new season is "Opening the Garden".  I like this term.  It conveys the readiness and preparation one feels for the … [Continue reading]

Manito Park Greenhouse

The Manito Park Greenhouse (conservatory) is located in the heart of Manito Park, the undisputed jewel of our city with respect to gardens.  It's worth a visit if you are planning a trip here, and it is worth a trip back to see it again if you live … [Continue reading]

Winter Interest

Now that is officially winter, it is time to look at some plants for winter interest.  Many plants provide structure and definition in the winter garden.  When the snow is deep, the plants of interest tend to be the trees, shrubs and evergreens that … [Continue reading]

Red Twig Dogwoods

In winter, we become much more aware of the reason that red twig dogwoods have been given that name.  In summer, the twigs are a standard gray/brown with a slight red twinge, but in winter the color shines.  Not only are there red twig dogwoods, but … [Continue reading]

Santa Fe Botanical Garden

The Santa Fe Botanical Garden offers inspiration to those of us living in a cold and dry climate.  Though they got more rain than us last summer, most years we're nearly the same and given their 7000' elevation the winter is cold much like ours … [Continue reading]