Monday, January 16, 2012

Winter Salon at Jim and Dan's: superlative food and matchless company

Jim Dronenberg has more than doubled the size of this planting area since my last visit. He did the brickwork, installed the beds, and I have no doubt, planted those beds with the rare and beautiful curiosities he accumulates. I can hardly wait for next spring

It had to have been the largest event I ever attended there; I  missed their Perennial Plant Association Dinner. There were at least 50 attendees; an unbelievable selection of experts, geeks, and the less fanatical.  I was able to talk with Nick Weber owner of Heritage Roses though  recently enamored of dahlias. Ed Aldrich, the local dean of hardy tropicals, and dozens of other serious plant people. Jim and Dan enforce a strict rotation of seating. Everyone changes rooms and seatmates between courses.

Oddly, I met for the first time, a volunteer, Suzy ? (hey, I'm not a reporter!) from the Herb Garden at the Arboretum; she came with her husband Vinny, who was very tolerant of a houseful of wild-eyed fanatics. I was excited to hear her speculate about ways to increase the Arboretum's presence in Washington. She was both astute and positive. There were so many people and so little time....

I am grateful beyond words to Jim and Dan for providing the  opportunity, on a regular basis, to exchange knowledge, ideas, and experience with this kind of group in such wonderful surroundings.

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