After a thoroughly enjoyable Plant Identification class, I found myself wondering how the instructor, Diane Pierce remembers so much about the subject. The obvious answer is that she loves plants and gardening. The best part is that her enthusiasm is quite infectious and I know I will be back for my monthly installment of knowledge and inspiration.
I loved learning about plants that occur in unusual forms. For example, Clematis recta which is an upright form, quite different from the vine form of Clematis that we all know.  Another curious plant is Hebe ochracea ‘James Stirling’. This little Hebe did not have the tidy four leaf arrangement that we easily recognize. Instead, it has scale-like leaves that grow into a “whipcord” like stem that at a glance reminds me of an Arborvitae. Other handy gardening tips that Diane shared is how and when to divide a perennial, the correct way to prune a Lavender and for many of us she solved the mystery of when to prune – before or after flowering.
Diane has a great sense of humour and is a wonderful story teller. No doubt her humour will help me remember at least a few of the 25 plants she teaches in each class. Soon I will be able to at least maintain the illusion of being a plant expert!
For those of you who want to experience Diane’s impressive plant knowledge and gardening tips, the next class is on July 16th from 1pm – 4pm. Better still is that it will be a field trip to the gardens at Government House. To more information please visit our website  or call 250-479-6162.
By: Cheri