Oregon Fuchsia Society Display Garden
International Rose Test Garden, Washington Park, Portland, Oregon

A rose garden for the fuchsias? Why, yes, why not? Indeed, the Oregon Fuchsia Society sponsors one at Portland's acclaimed International Rose Test Garden in Washington Park. And it all makes perfect sense. The fuchsias were established on two slopes beside the steps at the far end of the main transverse of the Rose Garden. Originally planted with just more roses, the slopes had become too shady with the growth of several large trees to finally support them. Fuchsias to the rescue! There are other fuchsias tucked around the roses, here and there, so start up a treasure hunt when you're done smelling the roses and checking out the fuchsia display beds.

 Visiting and contact information.
  • The Rose Garden at Washington Park in Portland, Oregon
    Fuchsia Display Gardens of the Pacific Northwest.
  • This is a rose garden and the first rose is 'Debut.'
    Are there really fuchsias to be found in this rose garden, though?
  • In the acclaimed International Rose Test Garden
    of Portland's Washington Park no less? You bet!
  • Still… Looking across the beds of roses that go on for
    miles and miles, and miles, that hardly seems likely.
  • But right at your feet, you already find a first fuchsia
    nipping at your heels, trying to grab your attention.
  • There's no sign pointing the way to the fuchsias but they aren't too hard to find. From
    the parking lot, just climb down the stairs and take a left on the main transverse path.
  • There it is.
    The Fuchsia Garden at the Steps.
  • Don't be fooled by the rose sign.
    This is an alternate entrance, after all.
  • Fuchsias are planted on both slopes here. The trees overhead had
    gotten too large and there was no longer enough light to support roses.
  • The roses may have had their day in the sun, but
    now the fuchsias are flourishing in the filtered light.
  • A discrete sign set to the side provides the acknowledgements. The plants are
    mostly neatly labelled. A few labels have unfortunately wandered off, though. Bummer.
  • Members of the Oregon Fuchsia Society generously
    donate both plants and time to maintain these slopes.
  • Fuchsia
    'Christmas Elf'
  • Fuchsia 'DebRon's Black Cherry'. One of the beautiful
    new hardies from Oregon breeder, Ron Monnier. Look for it.
  • Fuchsia
    'DebRon's Black Cherry'
  • Fuchsia 'Uncle Henry'
    (This plant is possibly misnamed.)
  • Fuchsia
    'Delta's Groom'
  • 'Gracilis Variegata'. This is likely a sport from F. x magellanica 'Gracilis'. Its
    variegation is unstable and the plant often sends out shoots reverted to all green.
  • Fuchsia 'Shelford'
    (This plant is possibly misnamed.)
  • Fuchsia
    'Golden Gate'
  • Fuchsia
    'Golden Gate'
  • Fuchsia 'Golden Gate'
    'Whiteknight's Amethyst' and F. magellanica 'Alba' rise up behind.
  • The fuchsias on the Rive Droit.
  • Fuchsia magellanica 'Alba' a.k.a. 'Molinae' a.k.a. 'Eburnea'.
    Despite the alba, it's actually more pink than white. Especially with more sun.
  • Fuchsia 'Nameless'. There are a lot of red & whites to choose from. Vertically flared sepals are
    an interesting characteristic. Hmm… 'White Pixie' has yellow leaves. 'Torchlight?' Is that hardy?
  • Looking down the slope, there are a few companion plants,
    such as hosta and astilbe, also planted on the fuchsia banks.
  • Fuchsia
    'Delta's Sara'
  • Fuchsia
    'Carmel Blue'
  • Fuchsia
    'Carmel Blue'
  • Fuchsia procumbens
    A species native to New Zealand.
  • Fuchsia procumbens
    Like the other New Zealand species, it has blue pollen.
  • An attractive bench in the wall. Unfortunatley, the mulch has spilt down, making it a bit
    harder to sit and take in the fuchsias. There's a fuchsia spilling over the wall as well.
  • I don't know. The label says 'Zulu KIng'. But I'm a bit surprised.
    To me it looks a lot like 'Corallina'. Been awhile, though.
  • 'Zulu KIng' has a much longer, darker purple corolla than this. It's flowers should be smaller.
    The very floppy habit of this plant lines it up more closely with 'Corallina'. What do you think?
  • The moss is an attractive touch to the old stone.
    I wonder how long it took the gardeners to grow that?
  • This is also a test garden. Some fuchsias just don't make it for various reasons.
    'Roesse Blacky,' with its very handsome double aubergine flowers, didn't survive.
  • Fuchsia 'Anita' now peforming as
    'Anita' and the Berries.
  • Besides the Fuchsia Garden, there are other fuchsias about. While wandering,
    more than a few roses will catch the eye. And nose. Here's 'Cherry Parfait'.
  • The scents of many roses waft gently by as you sit.
  • A beautful heirloom tea sets a fragrant trap. Unfortunately, it
    lost its name over the long years it took in becoming an heirloom. Oh well.
  • Hardy magellanicas are planted around the Shakespeare Garden. The first
    fuchsia isn't recorded until almost a hundred years after the Bard's heyday, though.
  • Plantings in the Shakespeare Garden are set around an open oval of grass.
    Paving at the far end makes it like a small amphitheater, perfect for intimate performances.
  • This magellanica has grown through the
    evergreen hedges to arch gracefully overhead.
  • I just love the dramatic contrast of its almost lace-like
    foliage and flowers against the huge leaves of the musa to the side.
  • The play of colors between the two is also striking.
    Who would ever think to pair a fuchsia and a banana?
  • In the other direction is an interesting view.
    This is how a rose garden looks through fuchsia-colored glasses.
  • Back in that rose garden, 'Valencia' lies in wait.
    But it is time to move on.
  • The day's still young so there's ample time to visit the Japanese Garden set on the slopes
    of a deep crevace above the roses. More fuchsias are found along the way up there as well.
  • Fuchsias are even featured around the
    tennis courts, located between the two gardens.
  • Fuchsia 'Whitekinght's Amethyst'
    It has F. excorticata in its past so blue pollen as well.
  • Fuchsia regia
    A hardy species from the mountains of southestern Brazil.
  • Fuchsias and tennis, it seems, make a good match.
    Game, set, match: Fuchsias!
  • 'Thilco.' A beautiful (natural?) hybrid of F. magellanica x F. lycioides. [It's confusingly named.
    Thilco, or usually chilco, is the native common name for F. magellanica in Chile & Argentina.]
  • The grass walk that borders the east side of the tennis courts. A number of
    fuchsias are here so don't neglect to go down this garden path as well.
  • Finally.
    The gate to the Japanese Garden.
  • No fuchsias in here but many other treasures to be seen.
    Good-bye, then, until the next garden of fuchsias!