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Old 09-14-2010, 07:26 PM
 
Location: Des Moines, IA
219 posts, read 365,761 times
Reputation: 72

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Now, I have heard many great things about this city. And I wanted to know -- how GREEN is Portland and I mean it in two different ways. Firstly, I know that it rains there a lot. Is it green there all year round?? What I mean to say is, when it comes to your seasons, do you have a full Fall, and does everything turn brown for a few months again until Spring, or do trees and such stay green all year round? This might seem like a silly question but coming from the Midwest, I'm pretty clueless about an oceanic climate. And secondly, of course, I've heard so many things about Portlanders being extremely liberal and progressive, recycling is a big thing, as well as preserving nature. How true is this and could anybody give me any examples?
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Old 09-14-2010, 07:50 PM
Status: "Finally starting to rain and cool down!" (set 27 days ago)
 
Location: Wilsonville, OR
1,147 posts, read 853,597 times
Reputation: 1820
Things here are opposite of what is normal in other temperate areas with heavy tree cover, such as the southeast for example. The amount of begins to decrease when spring starts and dries up almost completely during the summer. During this time, unwatered grass turns brown and some trees will begin shedding leaves due to the dryness. Things in general stay green, though. When autumn arrives, the rains start moving in, and the grass grows back the trees that still have their leaves are vibrant and healthy.

Many of the trees in this area are evergreen trees, so they will be green and pretty year-round.

If you want more information on our climate type, check this out:

Marine West Coast Climate
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Old 09-14-2010, 10:59 PM
 
42 posts, read 45,275 times
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I find it is green year round. In summer the grass turns yellow/brown but that is the same time that all the flowers are blooming and the gardens are going crazy with growth. I don't think there is anytime that is downright depressing, which I used to see when I lived in Southern California when it would get so hot and dry in mid-summer.
Laura
www.DaybreakCohousing.org
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Old 09-14-2010, 11:09 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
1,657 posts, read 2,659,306 times
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If I may....

Maple trees turn color and loose their leaves, just as other parts of USA, which I tend to believe has to do with daylight hours, than anything else. Grass browns out during the dry season of July and August when very little rain occurs (typically.) In my neighborhood, grass needs to be cut last December (2009) until mid-December and again in late February thru July 5th when the rains stopped. I, as a renter, felt sorry for my homeowner neighbors last march out cutting grass in March while it was drizzling rain. It had been drizzling rain for several days on and off again. Drive through many neighborhoods last March and April and you would have seen yard work left undone, waiting for better weather to play in the mud.

Yews, shrubs, and grass do wonderful in Portland. Oaks, Maples, and ornamental trees do loose their leaves. But until you make it out to Portland, you cannot imagine just how well shade loving flowering plants and shrubs thrive out here like huge blossoming rhododendrons, hydrangeas blooms the size of basketballs, and Azaleas flowering perfume in the spring time that will overpower a person walking by. No shade tree needed since most of the spring is overcast most of the time. {Your neighborhood mileage may vary. Older the neighborhood, the more rhododendrons)

Aside: this may be the "the City of Roses" but from what I can tell from front yards, Hydrangeas and Rhododendrons are a both a close 2nd in popularity.

Snow falls only seldom each year, ground never freezes. So, many ground hugging plants don't hibernate, in my limited experience. Fruit trees and Nut bearing trees of course must hibernate, and do so.

Naturally, this winter might be a once in 50 year cold winter, and no one will own snow shovels, so YMMV. Portland is BYO road-salt kind of town.

Phil
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Old 09-14-2010, 11:33 PM
 
474 posts, read 765,511 times
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Phil, you need to add Japanese maples to that list - rhodies, hydrangeas & Japanes maples are EVERYWHERE!
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Old 09-14-2010, 11:41 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
1,657 posts, read 2,659,306 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by puerco View Post
Phil, you need to add Japanese maples to that list - rhodies, hydrangeas & Japanes maples are EVERYWHERE!
You are, of course, correct. I had forgotten about them.

Phil
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Old 09-15-2010, 12:41 AM
 
Location: Des Moines, IA
219 posts, read 365,761 times
Reputation: 72
It sounds beautiful!!! In Iowa, where I've lived most of my life, we go many, many days a year without any sun. November through March we can go literally weeks without any sun at all, but that isn't the most depressing part. The worst of it is the sludgey brownish ground where nothing is growing and not much rain is even falling. It's just a grey, uneventful sky doing nothing at all for the earth, and it's so bland. I get SAD pretty severely, but I can't imagine it being any worse in Portland because at least in Portland, things are still green, and if it's raining, it's a sort of productive rain if you know what I mean.
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Old 09-15-2010, 11:24 AM
 
Location: Beaverton
640 posts, read 938,634 times
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I think Oregonians become sort of accustomed to how gorgeous Oregon can be. They say, 'oh, yes, it's green most of the time' but I hear stories again and again of folks from other parts of the U.S. coming and being brought nearly to tears by the lush-ness of the scenery in Oregon.

It's like seeing the ocean for the first time; a person just can't describe it in a way that expresses the grandeur of what you will experience.

YMMV: it really depends on where you are coming from, but if you want to be someplace where you can actually feel that the world is alive around you it's Oregon. IMO.
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Old 09-15-2010, 11:31 AM
 
Location: Des Moines, IA
219 posts, read 365,761 times
Reputation: 72
I do remember the greenness of Oregon when I visited a couple of years ago. I was astounded by the Columbia River Gorge area. I took an 8,000 mile, 6 month long excursion of the Western half of the US, and that is some of the most beautiful country I had come across. I loved it there, truly. I can't wait to go back and explore. I never made it out to see the Oregon Coast but I have heard amazing things about it. And aren't there dozens of waterfalls in the area as well? Portland is what, an hour, hour and a half from the ocean?? Does the weather change much if you drive an hour this or that way outside of the city? That's one of the things about SF... you drive a few miles in a different direction and it's like another day entirely, weather wise. So I know, I KNOW that I will love Portland in the summertime, which is when I have seen it, but it's nice to know that I might have something to look forward to in the late fall/winter as well. Where, like I said, in Iowa, it's brown and grey, with the exceptional blizzard that eventually turns into black or grey sludge. I'm ready for a change.
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Old 09-15-2010, 02:08 PM
 
43 posts, read 71,944 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TygrrEyzz View Post
I do remember the greenness of Oregon when I visited a couple of years ago. I was astounded by the Columbia River Gorge area. I took an 8,000 mile, 6 month long excursion of the Western half of the US, and that is some of the most beautiful country I had come across. I loved it there, truly. I can't wait to go back and explore. I never made it out to see the Oregon Coast but I have heard amazing things about it. And aren't there dozens of waterfalls in the area as well? Portland is what, an hour, hour and a half from the ocean?? Does the weather change much if you drive an hour this or that way outside of the city? That's one of the things about SF... you drive a few miles in a different direction and it's like another day entirely, weather wise. So I know, I KNOW that I will love Portland in the summertime, which is when I have seen it, but it's nice to know that I might have something to look forward to in the late fall/winter as well. Where, like I said, in Iowa, it's brown and grey, with the exceptional blizzard that eventually turns into black or grey sludge. I'm ready for a change.
So many different micro climates in Oregon, it's hard to keep track. The ocean is under 2hrs from Portland. The average year round temp there is 45 to 65 degrees. It rains on the coast ALOT. Some areas may get up to 90 inches of rain in a year. It ain't swimsuit weather, even in summer except for rare days. The great thing about the coast is it can be 90 degrees in Portland, drive to the coast and it's 65. Instant air conditioning.

Going east, take the old Columbia Gorge Hwy to hit all the great waterfalls. The gorge is very windy, and tends to get ice storms in the winter. The town of Hood River is often called the windsurfing capital of the world. If you've never been there, check it out on a summers day. It's great.

The east side of the Cascades have four distinct seasons (with crisp falls, and snow) and more sun than the west side of the mountains. The Cascades hold all the marine air so Portland and the valley get mild winters and rain. In the summer is it so strange to have 80's during the daytime and 30's at night, but it is great sleeping weather.
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