Gardening news and notes: Japanese Garden’s koi campaign, Lan Su plant sale …

Published: Wednesday, March 16, 2011, 10:00 AM

Pat Jeffries, The Oregonian


Pat Jeffries, The Oregonian




koi2006.JPGView full sizeThe Oregonian/2006Bring back the koi: Portland’s Japanese Garden is campaigning to refill its Lower Pond with koi. All but 12 of the colorful fish died in December 2008, when a storm knocked out the pond’s circulation pump and the pond froze over.

The garden has been working to improve the fish habitat in the pond and plans to restock it to the previous population level over the course of three years. Donations are being sought to purchase 40 koi. So far, the “Koi Kount” stands at 10.

Plant sale: The Lan Su Chinese Garden in downtown Portland is having its annual spring plant sale 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, March 19. Garden members can start the sale early, at 9 a.m. The sale brings together about 20 specialized nurseries and focuses on unusual plants, especially those from China. Fragrant plants (edgeworthia, daphne), peonies, bamboo and penjing (bonsai) are among the featured plants.

The website carries a list of the vendors, which range from the well-known (Joy Creek, One Green World) to the obscure (Bam Bam Bamboo).    

Rooftop vegetables: In north London, volunteers in a project called Food from the Sky have planted a vegetable garden on top of a supermarket  — what could be a more appropriate location? The group calls it “a new template for our future.”

It seems that the supermarket’s heat leaks through the roof enough to protect plants from the worst frosts, and the garden is producing enough that its crops are sold downstairs on Fridays.

It reminds me of the rooftop vegetable garden of Rocket restaurant (now closed) and serves as an example of what’s possible for urban farming.

– Pat Jeffries

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