Open Garden Days at Cecil and Molly Smith Garden

The Cecil and Molly Smith Garden, world renowned for its collection of species and hybrid rhododendrons, will be open during the blooming season, Saturdays and Sundays, April 7—May 20, 2018, 11:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.

This three-acre natural woodland setting also features choice trees, shrubs, wildflowers, and bulbs, including Cyclamen, Trillium, Erythronium and Narcissus, which complement the over 600 rhododendrons and azaleas.

Established in the early 1950’s, the garden contains many rare species grown by Cecil Smith from seeds imported from China and cuttings from England, as well as hybrids he developed. The Portland Chapter of the American Rhododendron Society purchased the garden in 1983 and, along with the Willamette and Tualatin Valley Chapters, now manages and maintains it.

A selection of plants featured in the garden are available for purchase. There is a modest admission fee of $3.00 for the general public. Admission is free for ARS members. Due to the sloping site the garden is not considered handicap accessible.

The garden is located at 5055 Raybell Road, St. Paul, Oregon, 97137 which is 7/10ths of a mile west of Highway 219 between St. Paul and Newberg. Turn west on Champoeg Road and continue straight on to Raybell Road to the garden. For more information, call Dick or Karen Cavender at 503-625-6331 or see

This spring, don’t miss this hidden gem which has been featured in Horticulture magazine and several television programs.

Guided group tours of 10 or more people can be scheduled. Details are on the Garden’s web site.

American Peony Society 2018 Convention and Flower Show

Experience the beauty and fragrance of hundreds of peony flowers on display when the American Peony Society convenes for their 2018 Annual Convention and Flower Show May 23 – 27 at the University Place Hotel and Conference Center, 310 SW Lincoln Street, Portland, Oregon.

Scott Parker, APS President, said the convention is unique because it features the finest peonies in North America, all in one place at the same time. Typically, the blooms would have to been seen over the course of seven weeks in growers’ gardens.

“The smell is intoxicating and the colors are stunning,” Parker said. “That’s the neat thing about it.”

The theme of this year’s Convention, “Portland Peony Prelude,” is designed to highlight the beauty and diversity of peonies, and to remind denizens of the City of Roses, that there’s no need to wait for the roses to bloom, when peonies rival roses in terms of both their beauty and fragrance, making them the ideal  floral “prelude.”

The Flower Show is a free event, and the public is invited to attend from 1:00 to 5:00 pm on Saturday, May 26, and from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm Sunday, May 27.

A series of educational seminars will be conducted by peony experts and are also open to public at no cost on Saturday and Sunday May 26 – 27. A seminar schedule will be posted on the American Peony Society website prior to the Convention.

Attendees are invited to visit the APS book and peony seed sale which will be open throughout the Flower Show.

The American Peony Society was established in 1903 to promote the development and improvement of the genus Paeonia and to foster studies and public interest in cultivated peonies as a garden plant. Membership is $25 per year, and is available during the Flower Show or by visiting the American Peony Society website at

For more information, visit the APS web site at

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