Meet Scot Medbury, Executive Director of Sonoma Botanical Gardens. Scot has managed various public gardens including Brooklyn Botanic Garden and San Francisco Botanical Garden. Additionally, he is excited to share a new personal garden project on the southern Oregon Coast.
Scot currently gardens in Glen Ellen, CA (USDA Zone 9b; Sunset Zones 15 & 16) and Curry County, Oregon (USDA Zone 9b; Sunset Zone 17).
Rarely seen plants from the Southern Hemisphere thrive in Oregon’s mild Curry County.
What are some of the more unusual plants or genera that I am looking forward to growing in Curry County?
Araliads, citrus, Maddenii series rhododendrons; select palms, tree ferns, bromeliads, proteas, and araucariads; mild-temperate Southern Hemisphere woody plants generally.
Tree aloe (Aloe barberae), Arbutus ‘Marina” and featherhead (Phylica pubescens) frame a view of the Pacific Ocean in southwestern-most Oregon.
How did I become interested in gardening?
My maternal grandparents on Bainbridge Island made it fun!
Harvest moon rises over Sonoma Botanical Garden.
One of my favorite garden writers is:
W. Arnold-Forster, author or Shrubs for the Milder Counties.
A multi-trunked Mediterranean fan palm (Chamaerops humilis), a tree aloe (Aloe barberae), Phylica pubescens and a Queensland kauri (Agathis robusta) fill a bed in Oregon’s coastal Curry County.
What garden has most influenced me?
The Washington Park Arboretum in Seattle, which I first visited in high school, falling in love with the breadth of its woody collections, then almost entirely grouped taxonomically. I came to know that collection intimately, ultimately becoming a historian of its development and an advocate for its preservation and development.
Sonoma Botanical Garden’s expansion onto its Three Springs Ranch property will add new California native plantings to its historic focus on Asian flora.
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