The Garden at Winterhaven Devas, Nature Spirits and Fairies oh my
Besides the native trees like Douglas Fir, Western Red Cedar and Western Hemlock, the property supports a lot of native shrubs and perennials that grow along the edges of the property and the woods.

Deer Fern (Blechnum spicant)
Is a sweet little fern that mostly looks like a small sword fern with sharper fronds. It is less drought tolerant than the sword ferns so we don't have as many of them in our sandy soil.

Lady Fern (Athyrium filix-femina)
This is a finely textured deciduous fern that likes deep shade. You'll often find them growing in shady ditches on our hill. We have a few that grow in the deeper shade of a bed that is irrigated.

Sword Fern (Polystichum munitum) is a wonderful native mainstay. They can get huge over the years and provide interest all year long. They grow in both the sun and shade though they do better in the shade. We have them all over the property.

Small Sword Fern

Bunch Berry (Cornus unalaschkensis) is a wonderful little ground cover that likes rotting wood, deep shade and moist conditions. There weren't any growing here when we moved in but I've planted some in the deep shade in the rhododendron collection and they seem to be taking hold.

Bunch Berry

Low Oregon Grape (Mahonia nervosa) grows at the edges of our woods. It's about 2 feet tall and has leaves that remind people of holly. It has wonderful yellow flowers that are followed by purple berries.

Salal (Gaultheria shallon) is a great ground cover and small shrub. It spreads by sending out runners and can fill in an area in the shade or sun fairly quickly. It will grow just about anywhere on our property and isn't picky about soil at all. It's drought tolerant too. It's foliage is wonderful for use in bouquets and stays beautiful on the plant all through the winter. It has nice white bell-like flowers on pink stems followed by purple berries. I simply love it.

Small patch of salal

Kinnikinnik (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi) is another ground cover that grows in full sun to part shade. It's a slow grower but forms a nice thick mat over time. We didn't have any growing on the property when we moved in but we've planted a lot of it over the years and it tolerates our bad soil and drought wonderfully.


Evergreen Huckleberry (Vaccinium ovatum) is a lovely shrub that likes shade and will tolerate drought. It has nice foliage and once established produces dark blueberry-like huckleberries. I've added a couple of these in with some other natives.

Red Huckleberry (Vaccinium parvifolium) is a simply wonderful deciduous plant. It grows in both sun and shade, is drought tolerant, doesn't mind our poor soil and has lovely fern-like foliage and bright red berries that the birds like. We have a lot of them and they are one of my favorite natives.

Snowberry (Symphoricarpos albus) is a rather strange native that enjoys sun to part shade. We have one large bush near the rhody collection. It has light airy foliage and tiny little pink flowers that are followed by big white berries that look a bit like baby marshmallows. They'll stay on the bush a while and look suspended in air on the small branches after the plant drops its leaves.

Indian Plum (Oemlaria cerasiformis) is a deciduous shrub that is one of the first natives to bloom each spring. The flowers hang down like little lanterns and are followed by small purple fruits that are a good source of pectin for canning. The birds like the berries and spread seed all over so we have a lot of these.

Oceanspray (Holodiscus discolor) is another good-sized deciduous shrub that will grow in sun to shade and is incredibly drought tolerant. It has a cream colored spray of flowers that it is named for. They stay on the plant and slowly turn peach colored and then brown and stay all through the winter.

Salmon Berry (Rubus spectabilis) grows as a very upright cane with small prickles all over the stem. It has magenta flowers earlier than other berries. It's berries are bright red and the birds love them.

Red-flowering currant (Ribes sanguineum) is lovely pink flowering shrub that I had to add to our native plant collection once I saw it. The flowers put on a great show and the birds like the berries that follow.

Spiraea or hardhack (Spiraea douglasii) is a large shrub with pink pipe-cleaner-like flowers in the summer. It's supposed to like moist areas but we have a number of them growing on the southern edge of our property in a thicket with lots of blackberries and snow berries. Maybe there's a small seep in there to keep them happy.

Orange honeysuckle (Lonicera ciliosa) is a native vine with orange flowers. It aggressively climbs trees and can gird them if you're not careful. I keep them out of the trees and they've formed a sort of low hedge mixed in with some salal along the back driveway.

Orange Honeysuckle

Blackberry, trailing (Rubus ursinus) is the small native blackberry that rambles over the ground as a single ankle-biting vine. They aren't hard to keep under control and the berries are sweet and richly flavored when the vines are in the sun. They grow from shade to sun and can be a nuisance if you don't keep after them.