The Fuchsias of PowellsWood
Friday, September 04, 2020
Have you ever been to PowellsWood Garden? It's a three-acre gem of a botanical garden hidden in a quiet neighborhood in Federal Way, Washington, just south of Seattle. Being in the Pacific Northwest there are, of course, lots of fuchsias planted about display beds in the beautiful garden rooms. I was on trail of just those fuchsias checking out the garden this week.
What many people don’t know is that there’s also a larger specialty collection of hardy fuchsias. Probably because it’s tucked away at the end of a trail that requires a little walking down a wooded hill, steps, a hairpin curve, and then up again through a segment of the native successional forest that comprise the rest of the grounds. It isn’t a long or rugged hike but the first steps leading down might be a little daunting. There are dozens of cultivars at the end of the trail. And most are identified. Some might be old friends, some might be new.
You might ask, why are these hardy fuchsias tucked away like this, secretly hidden away in the woods? Why? The fuchsias actually comprise a personal collection located near the still-private residence of Monte and Diane Powell.
The Powells established PowellsWood Garden on this 40-acre greenbelt they purchased next door to their home in 1992. Right now that fuchsia display is going gang busters.
The Fuchsias of PowellsWood are ordinarily a bit hidden but still always accessible to the public. There are temporary arrow signs announcing “Fuchsias” pointing out the beginning of the woodland trail so you can’t miss the entrance. And along the way so you don’t end up lost and hiking the full forty acres. That’s worth it, too.
On a side note, check out the Fuchsia excorticata in the main garden. It’s not the biggest, and again not immediately obvious, but it’s been growing in that spot for several years. Consider it a treasure hunt and see if you can Find the Fuchsia!
➤ PowellsWood Garden website.