DALLAS — If you are looking to plant something in your garden that will catch the eye of guests and neighbors, you don’t have to search online for unique flora.
Daryll’s Nursery, 15770 Ellendale Road, Dallas, may have just what you are looking for, all in no more than a drive just outside the Dallas city limits.
Daryll’s has the unusual in stock, from aptly named dinosaur food plants — they have leaves that grow to 6 feet across — to several varieties of bamboo. Both are displayed in the landscaping at the nursery, so you’ll get an idea of what they will look like in your yard.
Owner Daryll Combs has plenty of dinosaur food, otherwise known as gunnera plants, in stock.
“I actually reduced the price on them because we have so many now,” said Combs. “Last year, we didn’t have as many, but in the fall, we divided a lot of the big ones and put them in smaller pots so we could get a good crop going.”
He’s done the same with the bamboo, including the most popular variety, black bamboo. They began producing their yearly new growth last month.
“Which is pretty exciting,” Combs said. “The new grow is bigger around and taller than the one before.”
With the black bamboo, it takes a few years before the bark turns its signature color.
“The first year is green; the second it’s spotty golden; and the third year the bark turns black,” Combs said.
With summer approaching, Combs suggests fig trees, another item that is well-stocked.
“They love the heat,” he said. “They produce well when it’s hot.”
He also has an abundance of blueberries on hand, perhaps a result of a wet early spring. Combs said people don’t have to feel intimidated about trying blueberries out for the first time. He provides detailed growing instructions for the uninitiated.
“This is something new that I’ve done. I have these information areas. The blueberries just have a label with a name on it,” Combs said. “I’ve printed up information to take with them, to find all about (the plant), descriptions. On the bottom we have a website that you can go to for more information.”
All plants have detailed signs that Combs encourages people to take pictures of for future reference.
Combs said he propagates most of what he sells at the nursery, so he has first-hand experience with most plants, and that knowledge he passes on to his customer via the signs.
“I spend a lot of time doing this,” he said.
If you haven’t been to Daryll’s in a few years, you’ll see a new “house” at the nursey.
“We call it our small house,” Combs said. “Everything in here is smaller in size than the bigger plants. A lot of them we have in bigger sizes, but we give the public a chance to buy something at quite a savings in a smaller pot, but still get a really good quality plant.”
You may also run into a few signs of a different sort. They say a selection of plants aren’t ready for sale yet. That is another effort on Combs’ part to make sure his customers have success with the plants they buy from him. He waits until a plant’s roots are fully established in the pot before offering them to customers.
“We don’t really want to sell anything before it’s time,” he said.
In a finishing touch, Combs sells his own mix of potting soil.
“We have regular customers that buy that, that come every year,” Combs said. “We get a couple of them in the spring that can’t wait. If it’s too wet, we don’t mix it.”
The mix contains black compost, pumice and fine bark. The trick may in the formula, Combs said.
“It’s not the kind of soil, you know the packaged soil in stores. You pick it up and it’s really light. This is heavy,” he said. “We call it Daryll’s Planting Mix. We used to label every bag, but we don’t even label it anymore. People know what they are getting.”
For more information: daryllsnursery.com.