The Mostly Mellow Garden of Westwind Farm Studio
Westwind Farm Studio is one of the places we saw during the first day of the Portland Garden Bloggers’ Fling. It seemed to me, as a Chicagoan, to be a very Portland sort of place, one where you can record music, take yoga classes, smell the fields of lavender, or commune with nature. It’s a place with a genuinely soothing vibe.
Westwind contains 40 acres that includes woodland, a naturalistic meadow-style garden, and a more conventional garden around a pool.
What I loved best was the meadow garden. Grazing land for sheep not so long ago, it slopes downward towards deep green woods, providing a view that made me want to pitch a tent right there and start a new life as a squatter.
Yucca, Agastache, Leucanthemum, Perovskia, Rudbeckia and other flowers bloom among the grasses.
I don’t know what this grass is (I feel like I should), but don’t the deep green conifers provide a fantastic background for it?
Another deep green background really sets off these Astilbe.
The same contrast really makes the red Monarda go KAPOW (a technical term used by garden designers). There were numerous hummingbirds zipping around but I wasn’t able to get pictures of any.
The gardens here also boast some very satisfying plant combinations, like these Crocosmia and Perovskia.
I was taken aback by these HUGE Epilobium in the more conventional upper garden. I’m used to seeing this plant in overgrown spots at the edge of the woods (its common name is Fireweed). Seeing it here made me appreciate its ornamental qualites, proving once again that a weed is in the eye of the beholder.
Also in the upper garden there were big splashes of bold splashes of yellow, orange and red – contrasting with the sloping meadow, which was dominated by straw-colored grasses.
There was more to see at Westwind, but at this point my camera battery gave out. Because of her job Judy wasn’t able to get to Portland until the first evening of the Fling – so she missed all the gardens we saw on Friday and I had to be photographer for a day. Too bad she didn’t get to see Westwind, it would definitely have helped her decompress from her business trip.