Class Preview: Low Water Gardening with Maurice Horn

We continue our class series this weekend with Maurice’s talk on low water gardening.  Maurice is co-owner of Joy Creek Nursery and has years of experience with low and no water gardens.  He has worked on large scale projects with Reed College and the Oregon Department of Transportation as well as smaller projects here at the nursery and at clients homes.   The class is Sunday, April 8th, at 1pm.  No registration or fee required.

Near the end of a rainy day I sat down with Maurice and asked him a few questions.  The conversation went a little long because this is a topic that Maurice is both passionate and knowledgeable.  This is a slightly condensed portrayal of what we talked about.  You are just going to have to come out to the class to find out more.

Clematis 'Durandii'

What is your inspiration for this class?

I want to help people lower their water usage. The commercial and residential projects I have worked on have taught me quite a few ways to do this.

Do you have a goal for the students?

I want to increase their familiarity with soil amendments and appropriate plants so they can be successful with this at their home.  There are also a series of tips and lessons that I have learned through experience.

Such as?

For hell strips, a planting strip between street and sidewalk, there is a certain logic that you have to follow.  You have height restrictions because you cannot block any views and this is also a heavily used area where trash cans have to go.  Within this framework there is a plant pallet and design that work.

Bulbs are also great no water plants that can give you bloom throughout the season.  This is not just tulips and daffodils, but a wide array of underused varieties that thrive in this situation.

You have a hell strip at your house, what plants have you enjoyed most in it?

In my own garden I am allowed to experiment more.  Clematis ‘Durandii’ has been a wonderful surprise.  It is the only clematis that I have grown that has bloomed well without supplemental water.  I also have a wide variety of bulbs that are nearly always blooming.  They really add to the garden.

I would like to thank Maurice for sharing his time.  We hope you can make it out to the class to learn more.


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