Garden Photo of the Day

Remarkable Rhodies and More!

By Kim Charles

Erla Richards from Independance, Oregon let's us in on a great little secret.

"When I read the GPOD on the Meerkerk Rhododendron Garden it reminded me of a trip a few years ago to the Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden in Portland, Oregon, with the senior group from our church.  It is a small garden of only 9.49 acres, but is extremely lovely.  The garden was initiated in 1950 as a test garden and many of the rhodies are from that time period and have grown to be huge.  There are more than 2,500 rhododendrons, azaleas, and other plants which have been donated by volunteers and gardeners. The garden is in a setting along Crystal Springs Creek amid small lakes, fountains, and small waterfalls.  I encourage anyone who lives in the vicinity or who is traveling through Oregon to visit this beautiful spot of nature.  Enjoy."

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R. Cilpinense

R. C.I.S.

R. Loderi King George (fragrant)

R. Fastuosum Flore Plenum

View Comments


  1. Maggieat11 05/23/2017

    Spectacular! What a gem you have found. That King George rhodie is absolutely amazing. What a lovely place. Thanks so much for sharing!

  2. tennisluv 05/23/2017

    Truly a garden worth visiting. Wish I had know about it when I used to travel to the PacWest on business. Rhododendrons and azaleas are two of my favs. Thanks for sharing.

  3. VikkiVA 05/23/2017

    Eria, thank you for these beautiful pictures. What a wonderful use of the land! Vikki in VA

  4. Jay_Sifford 05/23/2017

    How lovely! Rhododendron have this effect on my mind: they take me away from the city and to some beautiful hiking adventure in the mountains.
    Thanks for sharing.

  5. user-7007498 05/23/2017

    Good morning, Erla. Thanks for sharing pictures of that lovely garden. The creek and the waterfalls look so peaceful and relaxing. Looks like a great place to unwind. The twisted trunks of King George are eye catching.

  6. NCYarden 05/23/2017

    Wow, what a wonderland. Rhododendrons are such colorful clouds when blooming. Pretty magical. I really like those muscular trunks of the Loderi King george as well. Beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

  7. User avater
    meander_michaele 05/23/2017

    Hmm, I know the Bible says that God worked for 6 days and rested on the 7th... but I think it forgot to mention that he then went back to work and made the Pacific Northwest heaven on earth. Everything about this garden is divinely beautiful and inspires awe and appreciation. It looks impeccably cared for and I loved the artistic impression the trunks of the King George give. Thanks so much for sharing these pictures. Erla.

    1. erla 05/23/2017

      Yes, I agree. When we first moved to Oregon from California in 1964 to raise our kids in a sane place, I said that God would have to go some to make Heaven better than Oregon.

      1. User avater
        meander_michaele 05/23/2017

        Sorry that I did not see the spelling of your name correctly and instead, gave you the new name of "Eria"...I have since corrected myself. Lucky you to have been living in beautiful Oregon since 1984. Do have a personal yard full of rhododendrons and azaleas to enjoy up close and person during spring?

        1. erla 05/23/2017

          That is perfectly OK. I am not offended at all. My name has always been one of difficulty for people to understand and spell.
          And, yes, I do have Rhodies and azaleas in my yard. Some of my past offerings to GPOD showed them in their glory.

          1. User avater
            meander_michaele 05/24/2017

            Since I love to look and relook at great garden pictures, I put your name up in the search box to remind myself of your previous gpod submissions. Ah, ha, among your wonderful pictures, I see you had the fab photo of the Stellar's Jays. I had never before seen that variety of bird and I so loved their coloration. And, grr, I spelled your name wrong in my comments from that time also. I'd like to think I have now learned and won't make that mistake again!

          2. erla 05/24/2017

            Yes, I feel so blessed when they land on the tree just outside my office window. Their color is just brilliant. I tried to include a pic of one on our suet feeder, but I couldn't get it to copy. I don't know how others have put pictures in the comments, but I guess I'm just not that talented.

          3. User avater
            meander_michaele 05/24/2017

            I, also, have been thwarted in putting a picture into the comments. I used to be able to do it but from about a year ago on, it no longer worked for me. I would make sure the megapixels were low enough but still no luck. Maybe I'll try again someday coming up to see if my jinx has been lifted.

  8. user-6945477 05/23/2017

    Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden looks like a glimpse of Paradise. So beautiful! Thank you for sharing your lovely photos, Eria.

  9. sheila_schultz 05/23/2017

    What a magical garden to wander, even in the rain! King George is indeed a mighty ruler of his realm, he's magnificent. Gorgeous photos, Eria, thank you for the tour of this lovely garden.

  10. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 05/23/2017

    A magical spot! Thanks for sharing. Perhaps it is not that rare, but it is so unusual and really breathtaking to me when I see an old rhodie limbed up, with it's knees showing. Awesome.

    1. NCYarden 05/23/2017

      Hey Tim, did you see that? 9.49 acres is a small garden. LOL

      1. User avater
        Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 05/23/2017

        I did and thought about commenting...... :)

  11. Sunshine111 05/23/2017

    The 11th photo with the waterfalls was my favorite! Thanks for sharing!

  12. NWAgardener 05/23/2017

    Thank you for sharing this spectacular garden! It's hard to believe so much beauty could be packed into less than 10 acres. King George is my favorite, but the water features and, of curse, all the rhododendrons are magical.

  13. user-4691082 05/23/2017

    So far, Kevin is the only person to get Erla's name right! Lol! Thanks for sharing your outing with us, I can't get over King George!

    1. user-7007498 05/23/2017

      Hi, Rhonda. I had to magnify the screen to make sure I saw it right?

      How are things out in mushroom country?

      1. user-4691082 05/23/2017

        They are fine! How are all the wedding plans unfolding? Would like to have you over in the fall!

    2. erla 05/23/2017

      That's OK. It's hard to tell the difference between a printed i and l. I appreciate the comments, regardless. The "relax" one I'm not sure about!!

  14. user-7008585 05/23/2017

    I'm not really a rhodie fan (I know, heresy!), so I wasn't really interested in visiting Crystal Springs. After living in Portland a few years, I relented and BOY was I impressed! Truly a wondrous place - paradise on earth...

  15. User avater
    LindaonWhidbey 05/23/2017

    Erla, thank you for sharing this beautiful garden as we were there in the fall a few years ago and made a note to be sure and get back in spring. It's so important to have these green spaces in cities. That Loderi King George is regal especially the way they've trimmed him. On a side note, do you know that your name autocorrects to "relax":)

    1. erla 05/23/2017

      Really, or are you just meaning it is a relaxing walk through nature??

      1. User avater
        LindaonWhidbey 05/23/2017

        When I typed in your name, my computer wrote relax instead of Erla which I thought was rather funny since it's the one thing that gardeners rarely do:)

        1. erla 05/24/2017

          That's for sure. Especially now when I'm trying to catch up with all the weeds that took advantage of the months of rain that kept me inside most of the Spring.

  16. User avater
    vanhatalosuomi 05/23/2017

    This was a very nice find in my email today. Thanks for sharing the lovely pictures!

  17. Meelianthus 05/23/2017

    Thank you Erla for sharing these amazingly beautiful photos. What a treat for you to see!

  18. maryannborcherding 05/23/2017

    It is a lovely place to visit. Like Dawn, I'm not a rhodie fan, but Crystal Springs is a lovely place. My favorite tree there is the Dove Tree. A beautiful specimen and when in full bloom glorious! Walking paths make it easy for visitors with less mobility. My other favorite viewing pleasures are the ducks! Around the lake they have information boards on all of the different variety/species(?) Everything is well marked and easy to identify.

  19. user-6536305 12/29/2017

    Will certainly pay a visit next time I travel through Oregon. Thanks for sharing and happy new year!

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