Welcome to the

Pith   Vigor



the Book



Hey There! I’m Rochelle Greayer. I’m a garden designer on TV and IRL. I’m also an author and entrepreneur who thinks she can save the world by teaching everyone a little something about landscape design.



REgister now!

A Free Master Class




Join the Course Today!

Mix & match plants like a pro!

A Peek at an Irish Garden Centre’s Treasures


Have you ever perused the online stores of garden centres far outside of your own regional boundaries?  I find it really interesting as, I think garden knowledge can be quite localized and trends, styles, products and ways of doing things can range widely in different regions even if their growing climates are similar.  

For example, I grew up in Denver, the daughter of a fierce gardener, and so was pretty in tune with the seasons, cold winters, and the drastic change gardens go through every year. So, you’d think New England would not seem so different (more humid yes, but otherwise similar) – but there are weird nuances here.

I have never been able to explain the New England fascination (trend, obsession?) with mums in the fall.  OK, sure, they are beautiful, but no place else has such a monomania for mums in the fall like New England. 

Why?  I have no idea.

Back to my point though, I am always curious about what I will discover about a place by visiting their garden centers.  

Like this morning Patrick Fitzgerald tweeted about some products at the  Johnstown Garden Centre in Ireland and I followed along for a peruse.  Happily, I discovered some fun things. 

Meconopsis sheldonii

meconopsis sheldonii via www.pithandvigor.com

Johnstown also has a special area of their website that features rare ‘plant hunter’ plants.  I have seen the Blue Poppy (Meconopsis sheldonii) many times before.  When I lived in the UK, there seemed to be somewhat of an obsession with the plant.  Oddly, that obsession has only recently translated to the US. 

Maybe it is like most fashion that I noticed living in two countries – things that were hot in London, would generally not become a trend in the US until much later (sometimes years).  

Maybe that means the blue poppy will take off soon?

Here are a few other interesting plants that caught my eye.

Davidia involucrata (The Handkerchief Tree)

Davida involucrata handkerchief tree
Davida involucrata (handkerchief tree or dove tree) at Emmetts Gardens, Ide Hill, Sevenoaks, Kent by Jill Catley

The Handkerchief Tree (Davidia involucrata) is so beautiful. I can’t think of a garden where this wispy dreamy tree wouldn’t be an interesting substitute for a more regular Dogwood.

Wollemi Pine

The Wollemi Pine has been found in fossil remains dating from the Jurassic period. Forget deer, can you imagine — these trees survived dinosaur munching!

The tree was recently discovered in Australia and is now available worldwide in an effort to save this rare specimen (only 100 trees exist in the wild). It’s shape and leaves are beautiful and I think it has proved it’s hardiness.

Wollemi Pine by Scott Davies.

Evergreen Winter Blooming Clematis + Double Echinaceas

Clematis ‘Snow bells’ or ‘Winter beauty’ by peganum.
Echinacea ‘Double scoop bubble gum’ at the Royal Botanic Garden in Sydney.

I am also loving two twists on old favorites.  The double decker Echinacea is much more eye catching (a little like Bee Balm) than the original and this  evergreen Clematis also blooms in the winter!

What is wrong with my plant resources

And finally — I saw these excellent little resources on their website.  Really, to me they are the clearest most easily read depictions of all that could ail you (or your plants) in the garden.  I think they would make any novice feel like they could effectively, and with some authority, go to a pro and describe their plant issue and get the right help.

Anyone know of another great garden center worth cruising on the internet?

Spread the love

REgister now!

A Free Master Class



Do you Need a
Garden Makeover?

Join my Free Webinar Today!

- Learn my 7-step system to design and build a stunning garden anywhere in the world.

- The 5 mistakes EVERYONE makes when creating a garden. (save yourself time, money, and headaches and get much better results!)

- How to work directly with me (but at a DIY price!) to design and create YOUR own gorgeous garden. 


  1. sara says:

    HI…long story short – found your site months back searching for garden stuff – been “normally” obsessed with your blog – i go to most, if not all of the sites you mention – and now i am in horticulture science in college and changing my major! I LOVE THE GARDEN!!! You should try and browse Rogers Garden, Corona Del Mar CA http://www.rogersgardens.com/ – great stuff, you can just walk around it is set up like a garden and OOO so relaxing…AND look at the Christmas/holiday stuff! * Plant Depot is a great place too http://www.plantdepot.com/site/! Have fun searching!!

  2. jim clarke says:

    Thank you so much for the twitter plug


  3. Hello Rochelle,
    Great article glad you followed through on my tweet just goes to show people are listening out there. I just came across this article by pure accident from someone who logged onto our http://www.fitzgerald-nurseries.com website link from this article. Such a small world 🙂 and so good to see the diversity. Your blog and website are fantastic amaziing amount of work! Well done.


  4. Margaret Bohan says:

    I have a garden in Ireland and I have trouble with my rose bushes, the leaves have large brown spots and fall off. What can I give the soil or what can I spray on the leaves?

  5. Gena says:

    I have a grafted weeping pussy willow which is only but a foot tall ,( it was indoor plant )all of a sudden the leaves all started dying and the stem turned black up to the grafted area , I can’t find a single thing on how to save my tiny enchantment tree?! Can you suggest anything ?

  6. Gena says:

    I have a weeping pussy willow that need something I can’t tell what it is but hopefully you can help me …
    It’s brown and I have seen little red bugs before and some kind of reddish egg sac growing on the pansies that I put in the same spot ? Please help

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

join the FrEE 10-day garden Design challenge

Your Garden will look waaayyy better in less than 2 weeks - Promise!

in the weeds?

Sign me up