Monday, October 8, 2012

Support Your Independent Nursery: Field trip to Bulverde

October has been designated Support Your Independent Nursery month by Pam Penick at her Austin blog Digging.  All through October I'm visiting nurseries in the San Antonio area and posting about them each Monday.

This week I headed north on US 281 about nine miles beyond Loop 1604 to the community of Bulverde.  Bulverde used to be out in the country, but is quickly becoming a northern suburb of San Antonio.

I had heard about a new nursery with an interesting plant selection, so went to take a look.  Unfortunately, Stoddard's was still closed at 10:25 AM on a weekday morning.  This happens sometimes with small, family-owned businesses so if you are planning to visit during the week, you might want to call first.  I took a few photos through the fence and it does look like a nice option if you live in the far north suburbs of San Antonio.

Heading back toward town only a short distance, I stopped at Greens and Blooms, just a mile west of  U.S. 281 on Borgfeld Road.  I'd never visited this nursery before and it was well worth stopping to see their beautiful gardens full of a large selection of plants.

Nice display along one side of the parking lot against a limestone bank.

This variegated lantana I had admired at The Japanese Tea Garden last fall caught my attention.

This pretty blooming female cycad greets you at the entrance to the gardens

Nice porch and entry into the gardens

The display garden inside features a gorgeous large pond and stream under the oaks

This large spineless opuntia growing in the rocks near the bridge shows the resilience of these plants.
Many of the plants on offer are displayed around the ponds.

A large gazebo for hanging baskets and more plants

The gazebo is covered with flowering vines

An old wagon a wheelbarrow add interest to the displays

I enjoyed seeing this antique carriage inside the gift shop

This long vine-covered pergola provides a shady walkway to rows of plants.  The shade is welcome most of the year here in south Texas.

After touring the gardens I walked out to the shadehouses and was surprised to find there were at least four of these large buildings.  That's a lot of plants.

Lots and lots of plants

A display of ornamental grasses and native plants in front of one shadehouse.  This gulf muhly is taunting me because mine isn't blooming this year.

Rows of cacti and succulents next to another shadehouse

But that wasn't all.  Beyond the gardens and the shadehouses were acres of mature trees in containers.  This place is big!

A hawk flew over hunting for lunch

I did see some native favorites like Texas kidneywood trees in bloom and will have to return to explore again.

Among the selection of shrubs were several rows of large callistemon in bloom

A bottlebrush plant always brings back favorite plant memories from childhood.

Blooms and Greens is a great resource, especially for contractors and landscapers.  The staff is helpful and knowledgeable.  It is a very pretty setting and the selection is excellent, especially for trees.  Since not all plants were tagged and I saw only a few posted prices, shopping here might be harder for someone with limited plant knowledge.  But if you enjoy being surrounded by thousands of blooming plants and mature trees all available to take home, this is your place.  It is well worth the short trip north of San Antonio to visit Greens and Blooms.

For a look back at the first of this years featured nurseries, Shades of Green, click here.

To see my featured garden centers in the San Antonio area from October 2011 start here.

Don't forget to go to Digging to check out nurseries in the Austin area, Pam has a giveaway for you as well.


  1. When I get back, it's off to support my local nursery or two! That looks like a great find, and you gotta' love the occasional live oak branches adding mystery and age to the place...graciousness or selling what likes it there. What a concept!

    1. It does look very southern and gracious and is a nice change from the rustic Texas look.

  2. This looks like a big place. Maybe I need a day trip.

    I had dreams of a large, spineless opuntia like that...the deer ate it. Now, I need to replace an agave in the new drive bed. They've shredded it.
    There will be some 'regardening' going on around here.

    Thanks for the tour.

    1. Spineless doesn't work in deer country unless it is inaccessible as this one apparently is.

      I have a regardening post coming up tomorrow too.

  3. Thank you for featuring these two garden centers. I've been lost without ARE and I'm looking for places to fill the void:)

    1. ARE is tough to replace but we have many good options left. I was at Milberger's yesterday and with post that one next.

  4. What a beautiful landscape... Its a full on nature garden, I love it. I can't get enough of seeing green houses surrounded by arbors, vines, flowers, and oaks. It doesn't get much better then that, and a day in the sun for a gardener such as I. God bless.

    -Tony Salmeron

    1. This place look like it's closer to your area than ours and that's part of the charm.

  5. It looks so shady and cool under those live oaks and pergolas. This does look like a good resource for designers and contractors in particular. Thanks for showing us around, Shirley.

    1. You're welcome Pam, I'm happy to have discovered this gem as well.

  6. A nice to place to visit, I know Bulverde. Shirley , my Gulf Muhly hasn`t bloomed either. I put it out in June and am seeing them bloom all over elswhere. Does it not bloom it`s first year?

    1. It does take about a year, I put mine out this spring too. The fall planted ones are blooming, not fully this first year but nice enough.

  7. These look like great places to visit. The blooming cycad is gorgeous!

  8. That looks like a great place Shirley - I will have to check it out! There is a great nursery on the way to Boerne, just off I10.....I think it popped up just this year - have you been?

    1. That's Burns Nursery and I went to their opening in spring 2011. They are quite nice, we have a lot of interesting options here.

  9. Cool - I thought they were newer than that. We are sooooo lucky no doubt! It is such a pretty city we live in. Have a great week, Shirley :)


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