Dragonfly Farms Nursery: here’s to abnormality!

I recently had the privilege of revisiting a very special nursery. If you haven’t been, you owe yourself a visit to Dragonfly Farms Nursery in Kingston, where according to their motto “abnormality is the normality.” And once you’re there, it’s easy to see why: you can expect to find an astounding selection of plants both common and rare, with an emphasis on way cool stuff you didn’t know you needed in your garden. Owner Heidi Kaster is a true plant nut and can tell you a lot about the plants she sells, as she has grown many of them herself in the nursery’s extensive display gardens. So it’s really not about having unusual stuff just because it’s rare – it’s about all the cool stuff that has really performed well over time and thus deserves wider use in gardens. And to that I could add, it’s not just about the plants themselves, but how they’re used: the planting beds showcase a delightful array of contrasts in color, texture, and form. So you get the idea: cool stuff, that does well here, from anywhere she can get it – it’s easy for a dedicated gardener to get lost in the nursery for a few hours.

While many nurseries are struggling to survive in this tough economy (and this year the weather isn’t helping much either), Dragonfly holds its own. I’d say this has to do with a number of factors besides just the draw of unusual and interesting plants. Perhaps most importantly it is the owner’s passion for plants and commitment to building relationships with local gardeners. Heidi remains strongly locally focused and, unlike many nurseries around here, appears to show little interest in annoying marketing schemes from worthless national mega-nurseries and branding campaigns (I don’t recall seeing any “Proven Winners” there for one. Hint, hint, other Northwest nurseries.) She also buys more from local growers more than anyone else I can think of, including us here at the Desert Northwest! Also, the nursery is well laid out and appears to operate on quite low overhead. If you’re looking for hardy Grevilleas or Banksias and live in Kitsap County, go buy them from Heidi so we can sell her some more… ha ha.

Dragonfly Farms Nursery is located at 34881 Hansville Road NE, Kingston, WA. Current hours are Thursday-Saturday 9-5 and 9-4 Sundays. For more information visit http://www.dragonflyfarmsnursery.com/

The scope of interesting plants is far beyond what I could list, but here are a few more photos.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Loree / danger garden
    Jun 12, 2011 @ 22:52:23

    I am so excited to get to meet Heidi and visit Dragon Fly during the Seattle Garden Bloggers Fling in July. God help me if she still has that giant Schefflera macrophylla then. You put that picture in your post just to make me drool didn’t you?


  2. Ian
    Jun 14, 2011 @ 17:01:56

    Pretty much! You’ll have to let me know what you think of the garden bloggers event.


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