The following are some of the area nurseries with holiday specialties:
The Quail Nursery in Encinitas displays traditional red poinsettias and new hybrids amid a rustic setting of antiques and books. The Quail Nursery also offers fresh cut Noble firs and flowering hanging baskets. 501 Quail Gardens Drive. 753-8646.
Sunshine Gardens in Encinitas offers a wide variety of poinsettias, wreaths and fresh garland to go along with its selection of trees and "Yule logs," sweet-smelling fireplace logs. Located at 662 Encinitas Blvd. 436-3244.
Weidner's Begonia Garden in Encinitas carries pansies, cyclamen, fushias, impatiens, diascias and anthuriums as well as Ecke poinsettias, which range in price from $5 for a 4- to 5-inch plant to $60 for a Grande Tree. A 12-inch ivy Christmas tree costs about $10; a small Kentia palm costs about $15. Just east of Interstate 5, about a quarter of a mile north of Leucadia Boulevard. 695 Normandy Road., Encinitas, 436-2194.
Thornton-Blue Pacific in Encinitas specializes in bird of paradise and other cut flowers. Sells wholesale and at a walk-in retail store, where a 3-foot bird of paradise stem sells for 75 cents. 950H Zona Gale Road, Encinitas. 753-1177.
Tropic World Inc. of Escondido specializes in hard-to-find or unusual plants, and offers an ever-changing selection of roses, fruit trees and ornamental and native shrubs. The nursery also features hybrid orchids, bamboo, bonsai and Christmas cactus, as well as Jade plants and Christmas Cheer. Tropic World has one of North County's largest selections of roses, and carries about 400 different kinds of fruit trees. 26437 North Centre City Parkway. 746-6108.
Canterbury Gardens and Gifts of Escondido specializes in English gardens. It carries more than 200 varieties of roses, custom indoor floral and plant arrangements and hanging moss baskets, as well as garden statuary and ornamentation. 2402 S. Escondido Blvd. 746-1400.
Pinery Tree Farm in Escondido, near Rancho Bernardo and North County Fair, lets customers cut their Christmas trees. You can also buy a potted tree that can be used for the holiday and then planted again. The Pinery is well stocked with Monterey Pines and offers free tractor-driven hayrides during the day. Located at 12450 Highland Valley Road, half a mile from Interstate 15 off the Highland Valley Pomerado exit. 487-1284.
Fallbrook Garden Center and Florist offers handmade original wreaths and planted baskets to go along with a variety of poinsettias and special trees such as Noble firs. Located at 1625 S. Mission Road. 728-6371.
Schaeffer's Nursery in Fallbrook stocks live Christmas trees in containers and cut Noble and Douglas firs from Oregon. Schaeffer's also offers a colorful mix of poinsettias and hanging baskets of bougainvillea, as well as an assortment of wreaths. The nursery is at 2319 N. Highway 395. 728-7090.
Walker-Vice Nursery in Valley Center specializes in citrus and avocado trees, and also carries some ornamental plants. 11050 Mystery Mountain Road. 749-1615.
Vista Tree Farm sells a variety of ornamental trees, shrubs and vines, and specializes in landscaping and renovation. A popular item this time of year is an espalier, a fruit tree or ornamental shrub that is trained to grow in a flat plane against a wall or hanging off a trellis. Located at 825 Poinsettia Ave. in Vista. 598-5588.
Pepper Tree Nursery in San Marcos has cut and live trees, a variety of house plants, poinsettias and Christmas cacti. They flock trees in red, blue and white. Santa will be on hand to take photographs with the kids on Dec. 15 and 22, 1019 W. San Marcos Blvd. 744-3822.
S&S Growers in San Marcos offers an extensive display of traditional ground covers such as ice plant and ivy, as well as colorful low ground covers such as Garzanias, Verbenas, and red apple, which is similar to ice plant. Located at 3232 N. Twin Oaks Valley Road. 744-3232.
Nurseryland Garden Centers in Escondido, Oceanside, Carlsbad, Rancho Bernardo and Del Mar carry cut trees, such as Noble and Douglas fir, as well as live trees like Monterey pines, Italian stone pines and Aleppo pines. Nurseryland carries flocked trees in white, poinsettias, live sequoias, and wreaths and live garland for decoration.
Carlsbad: 925 Palomar Airport Road. 438-3990; Del Mar: 2610 Via de La Valle. 566-1191; Escondido: 415 N. Ash. 745-0444 and 260 Crest. 741-6603; Oceanside: 1828 Oceanside Blvd. 757-9239. Rancho Bernardo: 16588 Bernardo Center Drive. 485-1551.
Rancho Soledad Nursery in Rancho Santa Fe has more than 250 varieties of palm trees displayed in a football field-sized greenhouse with its own tropical atmosphere. Rancho Soledad Nursery carries a wide variety of orchids and anthuriums and specializes in uncommon or unusual plants like the cycad, which resembles a prehistoric palm tree with fernlike leaves. A 2- to 3-foot cycad is in the $200 range, and a 20-foot plant can cost as much as $5,000. Located at 18539 Aliso Canyon Road. 756-3717.
Sho-en Environmental Gardens in Ramona has more than 30,000 trees on the premises, which include bonsai, and Japanese Black Pines trained in the Oriental tradition. Sho-en also has cycads, indoor and outdoor sculptures and Oriental stone lanterns, which range from $300 to $10,000. Call for directions. 15090 Sho-en Lane. 789-7079.
Country Gardener Nursery in Carlsbad offers a complete garden center as well as a Christmas display gift shop. They feature a wide variety of live trees and fresh cut trees from Washington. They also specialize in Christmas cactus. 4915 El Camino Real. 729-6339.