Revisiting Green Acres Nursery in Folsom

A year ago, Green Acres Nursery opened its 3-acre location in Folsom on the outskirts of Sacramento. At the time, it was billed as the largest retail nursery in California’s Central Valley. Here is the blurb I posted about my March 2012 visit. Since Folsom is a 40-minute drive from here and Green Acres’ Sacramento location is much closer, I had only visited the Folsom nursery that one time.

However, on Friday I had the opportunity to go back for another look-see. The nursery is located on the edge of town on a hill overlooking the Highway 50 to the south and upscale housing to the north.


View from Green Acres Nursery in Folsom, CA

While Green Acres has just about everything a gardener could want, their selection of shrubs is particularly impressive. There were at least a dozen different camellia varieties, many of them still in bloom.


Camellias in bloom

Like last year, I was also drawn to the many different kinds of pieris. These two were my favorites: ‘Temple Bells’…


Pieris japonia ‘Temple Bells’

…and ‘Flaming Silver’.


Pieris japonia ‘Flaming Silver’

Another attraction that jumped out at me: heucheras in many different colors. Unfortunately, our hot sun bleaches their leaves to an unattractive dirt color in no time.


Assorted heucheras

While I know a thing or two about restios, I’d never seen this one, Rhodocoma foliosa. It’s a compact grower, only 3 to 4 ft. tall. Did I buy it? No. Do I now wish I had? Yes.


Rhodocoma foliosa, a compact restio with a dense growth habit (3-4 ft)

Coral aloe (Aloe striata) isn’t exactly rare but it’s still not very common in retail nurseries. This was a beautiful specimen in a 5-gallon container, reasonably priced at $25.


Coral aloe (Aloe striata)

The agave selection was much larger than last year. In a weird quirk of retail pricing, the 2-gallon sizes were $27.50, the 5-gallon sizes $25!

130315_GreenAcresFolsom_Agaves 130315_GreenAcresFolsom_Agave-americana-Marginatajpg

Agave galore

130315_GreenAcresFolsom_Agave-Mr-Ripple- -vivipara

TOP: Agave vivipara
BOTTOM: Agave ‘Mr Ripple’

I was positively giddy when I found an Agave desmetiana ‘Joe Hoak’. It’s been one my favorite agaves for a long time, but I had never seen one in a local nursery. I was so happy to be able to snap up a large 5-gallon plant for $25.


Agave desmettiana  ‘Joe Hoak’

The selection of woody spurge cultivars continues to grow every year. Check out these three beauties. They are so different!


Assorted woody spurges

This silver-leaved Euphorbia characias cultivar is similar to ‘Tasmanian Tiger’ or ‘Glacier Blue’ but it has wider leaves. It’s called ‘Silver Swan’.


Euphorbia characias ‘Silver Swan’

Vertical gardening has gone mainstream: This is a beautifully made wooden rack, about 4 ft tall. I loved the combination of succulents and herbs—and a black mondo grass thrown in for good measure.


Vertical garden rack

One of the biggest surprises were these tall (at least 5 ft.) African milk bushes (Synadenium grantii ‘Rubra’). I bought a smaller specimen last year, and it was awesome to see what it might look like soon.


African milk bush (Synadenium grantii ‘Rubra’)

And finally the most beautiful sight of my visit: a Kanjuji granite lantern. This is my favorite Japanese lantern style. Green Acres had a half a dozen different granite lanterns. None of them are cheap, but they are beautifully made and will last a lifetime (or two). If I’d had $500 to spare, this one would have come home with me.


Kanjuji-style granite lantern


  1. Looks like a nice way to spend a day. So you're not going back for the restio? It's only 40 minutes...

    Which reminds me: this is the year I get an Elegia capensis or similar. It will happen.

    1. Alan, I'm keeping my eyes open for you. Plenty of Chondropetalum tectorum, but Elegias are impossible to find in local nurseries.

  2. Ah you got a Joe....I am jealous. Now I wish I was driving down to the SF Fling and could stop in route and pick one up! Congrats!

    1. Loree, my 'Joe Hoak' had two small pups. I removed them when I repotted the mother plant. If they live, I'll send you one of them.

  3. Some very nice plants there! I've been thinking about getting a Joe Hoak for quite some time now but I only ever see them as small plants. Seeing that big one has sold it to me, must get one soon even if I have to start with a small one.

    1. 'Joe Hoak' would be a deserving addition to your collection. If you can find one, you should definitely grab it.


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