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joe_OC

RIP George Sparkman

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joe_OC

With a heavy heart, I am sharing the news of George’s passing.  I will miss him and his dry humor.  Cancer sucks.

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Meangreen94z

It was a shock to hear it. RIP

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waykoolplantz

i have had many dinners on the porch with George and cant believe hes gone. He was a fan of my garlic brussels.

i sent this pic of Dr B & Cathy at dinner to George 2 months ago...with the caption 'wish you were here'.  

Now more than ever

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Hilo Jason

This is very sad news and I will miss him as well. 

I’m thankful for the 10 years of living near him in Fallbrook and countless visits to his nursery, talking plants and life. I have fond memories of arriving at the nursery, and then we always walked out past his shade house to admire the view of the hills of Fallbrook together.  It was the same every time and I always looked forward to that. 

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DoomsDave

Sad to hear.

I had the occasion to visit him at his place out there in the wilds on the edge of Fallbrook.

Hope his family is okay.

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Firepalm

Very sad to hear the news.  He told me a bit about what he was dealing with on our last visit towards the end of 2019.  My experiences with him were much like Jason's.  Always started by admiring the view beyond the shade house out towards Camp Pendleton and paying a visit to some of his favorite plants such as a particularly ferocious E. Horridus that he had dubbed "Hitler."   I never got tired of listening to him talk about plants.  He was always very generous with his time and knowledge and his dry wit cracked me up.  No doubt he will be missed by the plant community.  RIP George and thank you for the memories and the numerous plants in my garden that always put a smile on my face.

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Jeff Searle

I was saddned to hear about George passing away. It was expected however as Andrea and I had a long talk on the phone one day while driving not too long ago.  We will always be grateful and humble that he would fly all the way from California to  Florida just to come to our annual Christmas Party each year. He will be missed. Our condolences to his wife and family. RIP...George.

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PalmatierMeg

I, too, am saddened to learn this news. I never met him in person but corresponded with him when I bought palms from his website. What a loss to all palm lovers.

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Tracy

George was a friend.  I met George looking for a deal on cycads and palms but over time I didn’t call or visit him just to purchase plants.  I would call when returning from Riverside County to San Diego and ask if I could stop in on my way home.  Yes, I did buy a lot of cycads, aloes and many palms from him, but like others I spent time visiting with him and touring his favorite plants.  Those favorite plants like “Hitler” und “Eva Braun” the male and female Encephalartos horridus, his latifrons and various woodii hybrids also became some of my favorite plants that I would ask to visit.   Sometimes he just wanted to show me the oddball variant of the many specimens of a particular species.  He was passionate about his plants and appreciated when others shared his passion.

I will miss watching the sun setting up on his nursery pad in Fallbrook as we discussed world events, travel, my sons and things far afield from just plants.  In addition to his dry sense of humor, I remember his German accent which was only really noticeable when he spoke Spanish to his employees.  I heard Deutsche but the words were all Spanish words.  I loved to tease Herr Sparkman about it and he took it well.  If you were enthusiastic about plants he was always happy to share his knowledge about them, which is why we sometimes found the sun setting and temperatures cooling on some of those afternoons I visited.

I know he fought this cancer hard.  We spoke on the phone a handful of times over the last few months but only when he was up for it.  I sent him texts with photos of plants in my garden that I got from him that brought me joy and wished him well.  It was his decision whether to talk about how he was faring or if he just wanted a distraction from his fight.  Up until the last text he sent back to me when he had returned to the hospital again, he was optimistic, telling me that “he would improve”. 

I will remember George when I look at the many cycads and palms in my yard. How can I not remember the knowledge he shared with me and think of him when I’m gardening?  Selfishly I will miss seeing and talking to my friend.  To his wife I send my deepest condolences and George:  Auf Wiedersehen, Freund.

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Joe palma

I'm very sad to hear the news about George. He was a great guy and had a great sense of humor. Grew really nice plants and was well respected. Was always very kind to me and that was appreciated for sure.  Great loss to our palm world and he will be missed. Thanks for all the nice palms and cycads George. RIP

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MattyB

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rprimbs

I had no idea that George Sparkman had died.  That's too bad.  He was a super nice guy and a top horticulturalist.

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waykoolplantz

lost the talipot is a storm...losing George truly overwhelms me.  pic taken 6yrs ago

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Tracy
On 6/29/2020 at 5:43 AM, waykoolplantz said:

losing George truly overwhelms me.

Another side note, George never minded if I brought a camera and took photos of plants but he was very clear that he didn't want to be in any of the photos.  I was being chastised while taking this photo of him in front of an Encephalartos tranvenosus x woodii, not for taking a picture of the cycad, but for getting him in the frame.  Lots of reminders in my garden to bring up good memories about George.

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