“Mary, Mary, quite contrary
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells and cockleshells
And pretty maids all in a row.” —Mother Goose nursery rhyme

Spring has sprung! In Edmonds, that means lush gardens bursting with decorative, edible delights: String of Pearls, Sweet Sunrise Strawberries, Cerinthe Blue Honeywort, Centaurea Bachelor Buttons, variegated ferns, California Poppy Thai Silk Bush Rose Chiffon, Lauren’s Grape Poppy…

A drop in the bucket of all that’s in season, in the fertile Pacific Northwest. Garden Country.

Edmonds’ garden warriors take their plants and flowers seriously, and show them off with pride. An attraction unto themselves, their gardens grow full and hearty, whimsical, artsy, tidy or wild, with breathtaking abundance and variety, spilling over pots, ledges, balconies, peering through white picket fences, and dancing unabated to sea-foam winds, beside shade trees dangling pink and crimson earrings in a modern-day Eden, where every living thing is sacred and nothing is forbidden.

In full bloom, nature-loving annuals, biennials, and perennials offer up a pageantry all their own for locals and tourists strolling and taking in the scenery, or on their way from the Point A to Point B of their busy lives. Often, the gardens stop them in their tracks, as they gawk, point, and shoot pictures for social media shares.

It’s time to plant your spring garden, and watch it flourish.

Bountiful Home and Nursery, Garden Gear & Gallery, and Edmonds Bowl Ace Hardware provide all the necessary tools, seeds, gift ideas, and inspiration for garden warriors looking to add extraordinary, personalized touches to their spring through summer blooms.

These one-stop shops are also just a little different from the others out there, outside Edmonds — a little more exclusive, with exceptional varietals just waiting to be claimed.

“Follow the Path to the Nursery”

Todd Waddell saw a Bountiful Home and Nursery in a 100-year-old-house at 122 4th Ave. S., downtown. He went about filling the charming cottage home — inside and out — with “hard-to-find annuals and perennials, the unusual, weird, and wonderful.”

When he opened Bountiful Home in 2007, people fell in love with the “Old World Décor,” cozy, uplifting atmosphere, and museum-worthy pieces (a chandelier made of glass goblets, keys, dessert plates, and forks!) throughout, a mix of natural, organic loveliness, and an Alice in Wonderland meets Treasure Island garage sale/antique store appeal. 

"...A few garage sales later I found a cigar box full of keys, a dozen punch cups, some dessert plates, goblets and several hands full of old silverware. A little drilling, some Celadon ribbon and wire and POOF, we had made a chandelier. Instantly it created a buzz. Some begged to climb the stairs to view it, while others wanted to buy it. But this little lovely is staying here with me in the studio at Bountiful Home and Nursery, so more folks may enjoy the light in the attic." —Blogspot, "The Light in the Attic," Aug. 18, 2011

Home-made signs, wooden structures straight out of a Peter Pan novel, a robin’s egg casually nesting inside a metal mailbox from the ‘50s, with the door cracked open in an inviting manner…and that’s just in the front entrance!

Waddell’s backyard garden and nursery is the stuff of dreams, made from the natural fabrics birthed by Mother Nature in an organic merger with the man-made, tied together with bits of string and magic. A fanciful wood shingle shed popping with pottery eyes and a faded green-and-red birdhouse… “Old apple trees watch over junk fences laden with relics of yesterday while a wonderful collection of favorite flowers visit throughout the seasons… [website].”

New plants arrive all the time, including one of Waddell’s favorites, Nigella…Love-in-a-Mist…those Cerinthe Blue Honeyworts, Bachelor Buttons, and Poppy Thai Silk Bush Rose Chiffon.

Everything to spark dreams of your own.

Garden Gear & Gallery (102 5th Ave. N.) specializes in cute, whimsical gardening must-haves that may surprise you.

Gardening gear for weeding, digging, pruning, and planting, sure. Even cleaning and sharpening service for the Felco pruners they sell.

But they also carry enchanting, thoughtful items that satisfy the artistic, environmentally-friendly side in every gardener: recycled paper pots, porcelain planters in the shape of a human waving hello, with its head half-lopped off — the better to plant cactus in, my dear — and a baby llama, glass-blown humming bird garden stakes.

And of course, the main attraction, the plants. New arrivals include sweetly/spicy-scented String of Pearls, Tricolor Prayer, cactus of every kind, Euphorbia Firesticks, Monstera, heart-shaped leaf Hoya, and primrose.

Hero ACE Hardware & Grocery (550 5th Ave. S.) may be a chain, but the store doesn’t act like one. The hardware store is also set up like a mini-market, with a deli section serving fresh-made sandwiches and whole smoked chicken, and window-facing, counter seating to enjoy the view outside.

It’s a hardware store and grocer in one, very Edmonds-specific, with more than enough gardening tools and toys to play with, whether you’re designing a terraced or square-ft. garden, or several acres of a landscaped wonderland.

Pick up gigantic bones for Fido on your way out. It’s Edmonds, after all.

Edmonds Downtown Alliance (Ed!) did a great piece, “How Does Your Garden Grow, Edmonds?” Feb. 20. Check it out for more gardening resources.

Photos courtesy of Todd Waddell, Bountiful Home and Nursery.