Last Sunday I made a very quick trip over to Austin to spend the day with my friend Rosemarie. We were college friends, having met aboard the Texas Clipper II when we sailed the summer before our freshman year in college. She’s from a town just outside of Austin but now lives in California and had come to visit her family for two weeks. We met at the Treaty Oak, a tree I’d heard about but had not visited. I found it tucked between parking lots and a shopping center, so it was hard to imagine the many other oaks that used to surround this now lone oak.
After spending time walking around the city near the oak, we had lunch over at Chuy’s on Barton Springs Road. Then Rose said we had to walk over to a restaurant around the corner called Casa de Luz, which turned out to be this wonderful oasis along with a vegan restaurant. We walked around the restaurant to check out the food, which looked delicious, and perused their small bookstore—I could have bought several books!
We then dropped in at Flipnotics, a coffee shop with live music, for a few hours. I sipped some hibiscus tea while Rosemarie enjoyed a cider.
And then listened to live bluegrass music for awhile outside until we started sweating too much. I mentioned to her that I’d always wanted to visit The Natural Gardener to which she replied she knew where it was as her mom loved to go there. Turns out the nursery is just off of US 290 in south Austin and we’ve been passing by it as we’ve driven out west to camp or hike many times over the year. Now that I know this I will be making a detour to the nursery when we come this direction.
This nursery was awesome! Definitely going on my list of more interesting nurseries to visit. There was a bit of different diversity in plants than what I normally see, but I did see some old standards for Texas. What I liked most was their vegetables gardens in the back.
Inside their store was a pretty diverse seed collection and something else I found completely intriguing, a disease and pest diagnosis area, complete with a microscope and staff to look at your problem plants and pests. Very interesting, something I would love to see more of.
It was a wonderful day trip and I’m glad to of had a local, if now a former one, to show me a few new places.