Gardens of
Portland & Salem:
A Pacific Horticulture Society Tour
May 21-26, 2017
Tour Manager: Scott Borden
Local Host: Mike Darcy
Board Member, Pacific Horticulture Society

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Join Pacific Horticulture Society in the Rose City of Portland, Oregon.  Mike Darcy, host of Portland’
s longest-running radio show, “In the Garden with Mike Darcy,” has arranged for exclusive access
to some of the best private gardens in Portland and Salem.  We will also visit the world-famous
Portland Japanese Garden as well as the Lan Su Chinese Garden.  Our headquarters is the Inn at
Northrup Station, a charming all-suite boutique hotel conveniently located on the Portland Streetcar
line, surrounded by the eclectic restaurants, cafes and boutiques of Northwest Portland.  

Sunday May 21: Portland, Oregon.  Make your way to the Inn at Northrup Station for a 5-night
stay. The Inn is an all-suite boutique hotel, located in a lovely neighborhood on Portland’s
Northwest side, walking distance to shops and restaurants with easy access via the Portland
Streetcar to the Pearl District and Downtown Portland.  Your Tour Manager will hold an informal
gathering in the lobby early this evening, followed by a few blocks walk to our welcome dinner at a
restaurant known for local farm to table cuisine.
Reception, Dinner

Monday May 22:  Portland.   After breakfast at the
hotel, depart for our first full day of gardens.  Our first
stop is the garden of Bruce Wakefield and Jerry
Grossnickle, featuring a wealth of garden diversity,
including ponds, perennial borders, woodland
plantings, a rock garden and a greenhouse brimming
with tropicals. We continue to The Dietrich Garden,
offering a series of garden rooms containing
perennials, flowering trees and ornamental grasses.
Then we’re off to visit Craig Quirk and Larry Neill and
their garden, Floramagoria.  The front garden is
subdued with a Northwest/Asian vibe. It’s in the back
garden where the crazy begins. Pathways and walls
separate gardens ranging from tropical to Mediterranean to succulents to veggies.  Following
lunch, we’ll visit Barbara Blossom Ashmun and her one-acre garden of island beds and mixed
borders.  Next we visit Doug Barragar’s garden. The bones of his garden are a wide variety
dogwoods, Styrax, Stewartia and maples with an understory of rhododendrons, hydrangeas and
perennials.  Last but surely not least for today is the Jane Kerr Platt Garden, started from scratch in
1940s.  Originally an apple and cherry orchard, the garden is known both as a collector’s garden
and for its ability to display specimens with an eye to the combination of color, texture and size.
After nearly 70 years, many of the older plant specimens can now be seen in their fully mature
form.  Return to the hotel late this afternoon with the balance of the evening at leisure.  

Tuesday, May 23   Salem.   Following breakfast at the hotel, depart on a one hour drive to Salem,
the “Cherry City” and capital of Oregon. Our first stop is the garden of John & Kathy Palmer, filled
with plants collected over the last 30 years. There are large perennial beds, a vegetable garden, a
fun greenhouse and colorful chickens.  Kathy’s extensive collection of statuary and architectural
pieces are displayed throughout the garden. Next we visit Carolyn and Larry Kolb at the former site
of Wind Dancer Garden.  We’ll enjoy the koi pond, kiwi arbor, veggie garden, cacti garden, rain
chain garden and lots of container plants.  Our lunch stop will be at Schreiner’s Iris Gardens, a 10-
acre display garden with over 500 varieties of iris, arranged in beds among eye-catching
companion plants. Our visit coincides with the annual Bloom Season.  If time permits, we may also
visit the private garden of Ray Schreiner, a member of the Schreiner Iris family.  A highlight of today
is sure to be the Adelman Peony Garden, featuring 250 peony varieties interspersed with iris,
delphinium, lupine and other perennials and bulbs.  We then venture to Sebright Gardens &
Nursery with over 500 varieties of hostas, shade perennials, hardy ferns, and beautiful display
gardens. Having filled our senses with the horticultural wonders of Salem, we’ll head back to
Portland, arriving very late afternoon with the evening at leisure.  
Breakfast, Lunch

Wednesday, May 24  Portland.  Following breakfast, depart the hotel for a visit to the
International Rose Test Garden at Washington Park.   In addition to the glorious display of roses,
on a clear day there are beautiful views of Mt. Hood. Our next destination is the Portland Japanese
Garden, considered one of the most authentic and beautiful Japanese gardens outside of Japan.
There are five traditional gardens, a pavilion, and many plants imported from Japan. Our visit
includes a private guided tour. Next we head downtown for a private docent-led tour of Lan Su
Chinese Garden, an authentically-built cultural heritage garden and living museum of Chinese trees
and flora. Within this authentic Ming Dynasty scholar’s garden, serpentine mosaic
pathways lead to harmonious landscapes of plants, water,
stones, pavilions, and poetry.  The collection includes hundreds
of native Chinese plant species and forms. The Garden is home
to more than ninety specimen trees, many rare and unusual
shrubs and perennials, including magnolias, cymbidiums,
camellias, osmanthus, rhododendron, and bamboo. Following
our visit, we will drop off interested guests at Powell’s City of
Books  near Pioneer Square for time to browse the stacks and
visit local boutiques, cafes and restaurants before taking the
Portland Streetcar, taxi or Uber on your own back to the hotel.
Guests who do not wish to wander downtown may remain on
our coach, which will continue to the hotel, arriving early
afternoon.   Lunch and the balance of the day and evening
are free to explore and enjoy Portland on your own.  

Thursday, May 25    Portland:  Following breakfast at the hotel,
depart for the garden of Anita Barby.  Bordering the Willamette
River, this collector’s garden has been evolving since the 1940s.  Just down the street is the
Garden of the Bishop’s Close, known as Elk Rock, created over many decades by Mr. and Mrs.
Peter Kerr.  Their house, constructed in 1914, was positioned to take advantage of the view of Mt.
Hood.  When the house was finished, Kerr, an ardent amateur gardener, started on his long
cherished plans for an extensive garden. In 1957, when Mr. Kerr died at the age of ninety-five, the
house and garden were given by his daughters to the Episcopal Bishop of Oregon together with an
endowment for the care and maintenance of the garden, with the stipulation that the garden be
opened to visitors.  This English-style garden is known for its spectacular collection of magnolias,
which should be in peak bloom during our visit.  We next head for lunch and a visit to Garden Fever
Nursery, a neighborhood gem located near our next two garden visits. Linda Ernst and Joanne
Fuller have created delightful urban gardens on adjoining properties
-- in fact they share a garden gate allowing visitors to flow easily
between the two.  We plan to include one additional garden (stay
tuned!) before our last stop of the tour.  Lucy Hardiman is one of
Portland’s best-known designers, lecturers, and former President of
the Hardy Plant Society of Oregon. We’ll peruse the garden
surrounding her big Victorian home, where she tests plants and
design ideas.  Return to the hotel late this afternoon and freshen up
for our Farewell Dinner with wine at a local restaurant, walking
distance from the hotel.  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.

Friday, May 26   Farewell:  After breakfast at the hotel, check out
of the Inn and say a fond farewell to new and old friends.  Perhaps
continue your travels in the Pacific Northwest, visiting the Columbia
River Gorge, Seattle, Vancouver, Victoria……  

Itinerary Note:  Given the number of private garden visits included in this tour, it is always possible
that garden owner circumstances may necessitate a change in the itinerary.  Should a particular
garden become unavailable to visit, Sterling Tours will make every effort to substitute a garden of
equal or greater interest.

Flights:   Our tour begins and ends in Portland, Oregon (PDX).  Our hotel is about 30 mins by taxi
from the airport.  Airlines offering service to Portland include Alaska, Southwest, Delta, American,
United, Air Canada, jetBlue, Westjet, and Spirit.  Please plan a flight arrival no later than 3pm May
21, to ensure ample time to reach the hotel in time for our reception and dinner. Departure flight
May 26 may be scheduled at your convenience as no tour activities other than breakfast at the
hotel are included that day.

Tour Land Cost:  $1595 per person for members of Pacific Horticulture Society, $1695 for non-
members,* based on 2 persons sharing a room.   Supplement for single occupancy is $695.  A
deposit of $250 per person is required to reserve a place on this tour with balance due 60 days
before departure.  A minimum of 15 guests is required to operate this tour for the stated price -- a
maximum of 24 guests can be accommodated.  *Membership in PacHort starts at just $28 so why
not join before you register for the tour as you can then receive the member price.   
Join at www.

Cost includes:
•        5 night’s accommodation in Portland
•        Hotel taxes and service charges
•        5 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners, 1 welcome reception
•        Ground transportation as specified in itinerary
•        All sightseeing and entrances as per the itinerary
•        Escorted by Mike Darcy, Tour Manager Scott Borden
•        Donation of $200 to Pacific Horticulture Society

Cost does not include:
•        Airfare
•        Travel insurance
•        Airport transfers
•        Gratuities to motorcoach driver(s)
•        Items or services not specifically mentioned in the itinerary.

Physical Capabilities - This tour include a GREAT DEAL OF WALKING, sometimes on uneven or
unpaved pathways and/or cobblestones, and occasional use of stairs. Some of the places we will
be visiting can only be seen on foot with no other access possible.  Guests with limited mobility
MUST consult with Sterling prior to tour registration.  

Travel Insurance -  As your deposit and eventual final payment are both non-refundable, we wish
to make you aware that individual travel insurance is available to protect you against cancellation
penalties as well as provide coverage should an incident occur during the trip.  We will send an
email with your deposit confirmation containing information about how to get a free quote and/or
secure your coverage online or by phone.   We strongly encourage you to purchase insurance at
the time of deposit, as most pre-existing conditions can often be covered.

To print the itinerary, click Here

Terms and Conditions for this tour, click Here

For more information, contact
Sterling Tours, Ltd            
2907 Shelter Island Drive Suite #105-262    
San Diego, CA 92106      Tel: 619 299-3010     800-976-9497
Sterling Tours, Ltd