Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Somewhere over the Rainbow (Gardens) #3

October is Support Your Independent Nursery Month hosted by Pam Penick at Digging.  I'm joining in by posting about my favorites here in the San Antonio area.  Last week I posted about Hill Country Gardens in New Braunfels.  This week's choice is Rainbow Gardens #3 on Bandera Rd. northwest of the city. Rainbow Gardens has two locations in San Antonio and I visit both of them often.

The sign and entrance appear nondescript, but try not to judge this garden center by its parking lot.  On the other side of that blue building is five acres of "gardening heaven" as described on their website.  Past the check out area into the gardens you've definitely left Kansas and arrived in OZ -- or make that "aahhhs."

An inviting and colorful entrance to the gardens.  Annuals, natives and drought tolerant perennials are just the beginning.  You'll also find a seemingly endless selection of trees, shrubs, tropicals, herbs and veggies in an organized layout.  They also carry a full selection of soils, mulches, amendments, fertilizers and garden supplies.  Add in the beautiful display gardens and a gardener could spend hours here.

Let's take the tour.  A quick look at the annuals on the way to my favorite section

One more distraction along the way -- Rows of glazed ceramic pots by color.  Planters and pots in other materials are also on display.

My favorite section, the ornamental grasses!  Worth the wait since they look awesome despite the heat and drought of summer.

Around the other side is the butterfly garden display


Ideas for a variety of gardens..."gardening heaven"?

Rainbow Gardens is known for detailed display labels with specific information on how a plant will perform in our San Antonio climate.

Still more to see...this is five acres after all.  The water wheel is a popular stop for families.  Great fence for Texas gardens.

These stone mosaic pots are new here, very nice!

Huge selection of trees in sturdy wind resistant containers

Displays under the oaks with those helpful tags everywhere.  Rainbow Gardens' other location on Thousand Oaks is also five acres and just as nice.

Heading back on the other side of the gardens, I'll end the tour with this view of all those plants under beautiful oaks at Rainbow Gardens #3 in San Antonio.


  1. I was told of those places by a former nursery salesman from AZ...another couple places to visit next trip! I think they need to entice better at the front parking area, but tough to lose parking. Thanks for the preview...

  2. They have some very nice touches: that gorgeous ornamental grass display garden and the photos of mature plants on the info signs. Boy, I'd have never given them a second glance based on the exterior of the shop, but inside it's a whole different story -- very appealing. Thanks for showing us this nursery, Shirley.

  3. This looks like a good one.
    I may have to check it out one of these days.
    Maybe not so far from Wimberley.

  4. Used to live near the Bandera Road Location. And yes it does look pretty odd from the parking lot. When I lived there it was the only location. Used to love looking at their grass collection and also their tropicals. Shumachers was always my favorite however with Milbergers pretty close.

  5. DD - The whole access is odd as the parking lot has a narrow frontage on a very busy road. At least I had been to the other location first or I might have moved on.

    Pam - The Thousand Oaks location is probably more convenient from Austin, it's not far from ARE and in the direction of the Zoo.

    Greggo - I am researching a post on the history of Schumacher's, especially Chip's legacy of preserving and propagating natives long before there was commercial demand. If there's anything you could share, please email me. Milberger's is great too. So many choices and only two weeks left in the series.

  6. Linda - Thank you for your comment. The Thousand Oaks location is just off US 281 so that would be more convenient to Wimberley. The current plan is to post on that one next week.


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