Nursery News / November 2020
Russell Nursery is Open Daily 9 - 4:00 Tues thru Sun
COVID Protocols in Effect

Closing for the season Dec 20th 4:00 pm
Re-opening Feb 1st 2021 9:00 am
Happy Holidays!
As we look forward to 2021, we thank each of you passionate gardeners for your unflagging enthusiasm and constant support. Together, we made the very best of a tough year. May our gardens continue to flourish and our hearts remain grateful!

Wishing you a peaceful and quietly joyful holiday season. Keep your families close and be healthy and happy in the coming year!
Christmas trees are on their way and will be available for sale starting November 26th. Come in early for the best selection.
Greens Welcomed

Are you pruning hedges or shrubs? We repurpose unwanted greens into festive wreaths, centrepieces, and swags so please keep us in mind. Instead of burning or chipping your clippings kindly consider donating them to us!

We especially love: Cedar, Fir, Cypress or Holly. We also need branches with colourful bark, berries and/or variegated foliage.

If convenient, please drop off clippings at the nursery. If it's not, or if there is a lot of greenery, please call us at 250-656-0384 to arrange for us to pick up. Thank you!
Wreath-making classes are cancelled until at least Dec 6th as part of the effort to re-flatten the COVID curve. In a class on Dec 7th or later? We'll be in touch once we know whether the current round of restrictions was successful. Be kind. Be calm. Be safe. Hang in there.
Wreath-Making: Bad & Good News
Wreath-making classes may be cancelled but wreath making is NOT!!! At Russell Nursery you will find everything you need to make a stunning wreath at home. We have the wire bases (some pre-stuffed with moss), bags of moss and holly, greens aplenty, and all the decorative tidbits your creative heart can imagine.

Whatever your wreath-making comfort level, we have the goods to ensure that your door is adorned this Holiday Season!
Russell Nursery Cider: Bad & Good News
COVID will prevent us from serving cider and cookies in the shop this year but you can easily make your own at home. Here is our (not so secret) recipe:

Hot Spiced Cider

Mix together in a suitably sized pot:

2 parts apple juice to 1 part cranberry juice
Add couple of cinnamon sticks, a few cloves and allspice berries, (loose or wrapped in cheesecloth)

Bring to a soft boil, turn down the heat and simmer for a couple of hours

Best served warm with ginger snaps.

Stuck for Stocking Stuffer Ideas? Small, stocking-sized items can mightily please an avid gardener on Christmas morning.

One approach to finding a perfect gift is to ask yourself what your gardener grumbles about. Does she curse when she forgets plant names? Copper or zinc plant stakes will put paid to that complaint. Does he whinge about his knees after weeding? Perhaps a cushy set of foam knee pads will cure the ache. Hori hori knives are slender and fit perfectly into a Christmas stocking as would a spiffy new pair of gloves to start fresh with in spring.

Just want something fun? Who does not love a snow globe!!

Ideas for little (but thoughtful!) gardening gifts are abundant here at the Nursery. And friendly staff are here to help you find the ideal gift.
Gardening-Themed Gifts We were delighted this year to introduce many new people to the joys of gardening. These budding gardeners, having caught the bug, may wish to receive gifts of handy garden tools, or seed sprouting supplies that fuel their new found interest or expose them to yet another aspect of their new endeavour.

A dedicated foodie may love a West Coast Seeds sprouting kit. The newbie summer vegetable gardener might like an introduction to the charms of winter veg growing ... Linda Gilkeson's book, Backyard Bounty, would be ideal or perhaps a set of table-top indoor grow lights? Or seeding trays and a heat mat?

Picky, hard-to-please folk often welcome a Gift Certificate. Then they also receive a ready-made reason for another trip to the nursery! We can help you find the best gift for every gardener on your list!
Reflections on a Very Unique Gardening Season
by Laurel Rassenti
Well, what a year! Is it safe to say that the season evolved differently from what any of us would have imagined twelve months ago? Though the pandemic created challenges for all of us, we noticed many positive effects. We were so happy to see people: 
·    spending time in their gardens when many other recreational activities were off limits.
·    spending time with their kids in the garden.
·    taking an interest in food security and growing food.
·    taking interest in fostering natural spaces for indigenous plants, pollinators, birds, and other wildlife.
·    benefiting from fresh air and exercise at a time when we all had to stay home.
·    experiencing joy in their gardens, often while struggling with mental well-being.
·    embracing the nursery as a 'safe' place to visit. 
Three cheers for nurseries being considered essential services!
With more time at home, life seemed to slow down and gardeners had more time to fuss in their gardens. There's a movement away from low maintenance and towards building spaces that give joy and create feelings of nostalgia and cheer. Many gardeners grew flowers for fresh cutting, food, and medicine as a way to connect and take care of themselves, their families, and their neighbours. 
Some of us are using our gardens to recreate past experiences or to establish spaces that evoke faraway locales. It's amazing how plants can conjure strong memories of childhood; perhaps of a family home or a loved one long gone. In my own garden, I notice how my childhood memories influence my plant choices. I recall spending hours playing outside as my parents toiled on their roses (many of which I can still picture (even smell!) but not name). I am now dedicating a small area of my garden to roses. In a different section, I've added Crocosmia 'Lucifer' back by the compost bin right where it was when I was a child. And my rhubarb is from a chunk I've moved from one home to another. At this point, it's a family heirloom to cherish. 
But that is not to say that all elements of my garden look to the past as I also find inspiration from faraway cultures. I covet the colourful courtyard-style spaces of Mexico and Morocco, particularly Casa d'Azul (Frida Kahlo's home in Coyoacan, Mexico) and Le Jardin Majorelle (former home of YSL and Pierre Berge in Marrakech, Morocco). Both gardens centre around famously blue buildings (hey, MY house is blue!) and they incorporate lush plantings and hot colour palettes. What fun to combine elements from faraway places with PNW design!! Our gardens can be a means to escape to faraway places in a time when travel is off limits.

Has your garden helped you survive this crazy year? What’s been your source of inspiration? I’d love to hear! Email me at or tag @russellnursery in an Instagram post to share. 

Le Jardin Majorelle
Marrakech, Morocco
New to the Nursery in 2021...
Bulbs, tubers, and corms for spring planting/summer blooming: Watching plants grow from the roots up is incredibly rewarding, especially when there are spectacular end results. Gorgeous Dahlia blooms anyone? Just one of many coming soon!

Indoor plants; We think our shop could use some plant variety and drama so we plan to feature some tropicals. We're all very excited about expanding into new green territory!

Sprouting and microgreen seeds; We are expanding our West Coast Seeds line so that anyone can grow fresh food at any time of the year with minimal effort. Did you know that sprouts and microgreens are some of the healthiest foods you can incorporate into your diet?

We're growing more of what we sell; We hope you all know that we are growers as well as retailers. We want to bring you the best variety and quality!

Going wild for wildlife; We're growing our collection of plants and garden embellishments that support wildlife.
Better Pomes and Gardens ... A Plant ID Contest (With Prizes!!)
In winter, when the leaves turn colour (or fall off altogether), how can you know which plant is which? One useful clue comes from recognizing the seeds, cones, nuts, pomes, etc., that become all the more visible when the leaves depart.

What are the lovely red berries in the photo? You tell us!

Identify the genus of the plant that these richly-coloured beauties come from along with the genus of the other 9 plants in the photos (click on the link below to see them). Once you've identified each plant, email your plant ID list to

Name them all and you will be entered to win a Russell Nursery "Smarty Plants" Gift Certificate worth $25.00. Three prizes are offered. Get your entries in by Thurs Dec 3rd at midnight to be eligible. Winners will be notified via email. Hint: all the featured plants can be found on the premises of Russell Nursery. Good luck and have fun!

Monday Openings in 2021
Starting Feb 1 2021, Russell Nursery will be opening on Mondays once again.

Plant nerds rejoice ... we'll be open 7 days a week!

Please check our website for hours.
We want to extend the warmest thank you to everyone who has supported us through 2020. We are incredibly grateful for your patience, your visits, your smiles, and your words of encouragement as we navigated a remarkable year. We wouldn't be here without you and we can't wait to do it all again in 2021! Sue & Laurel
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