Favorite Garden?

Bill_zone6(W. Pa)January 10, 2003

We all can describe our favorite garden. Weather grandmother's, Kew, or one local that is easy to frequent. I have a special place for Longwood Gardens. A 6 to 7 hour drive; it is necessary to stay over a couple of nights. Entering the parking lot we always look to see the trained plants on the main building. Even the trees planted in the parking lot islands are special. As one comes out the building into the gardens, the first thing to see is the large specimen dogwood tree. Up to the right is the Annual Walk where plants are symmetrical and asymmetrical. Hugh Cannas! Straight ahead, the famous conservatory, a must to visit. The dancing water, the hugh topiaries (sp?), the grass displays, perennials, vegetables, specimen trees of full maturity, and a whole lot more. I have no idea where it might stand in world ranking (if there is such a thing), but it has to be very high. If you are in the area, it is a must. Even to plan a vacation here, you will have many sites to visit. Anyone have a favorite garden?

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I too love to visit Longwood. On the same trip this summer, I also went to Chanticleer for the first time. WOW! Great to experience such a different "feel"- seems a bit more of a playful place- even the garden chairs were painted in funky designs. Anyway, the two are close enough to stretch out that vacation one more day. Anyone else been there? Closer to home, I like to visit Green Spring gardens in Annandale, VA. Easy trails and labelled plant material-great ideas.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2003 at 9:53AM
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Bill_zone6(W. Pa)

Hi Vachick, doesn't Richmond have a garden worth visiting? And then I guess Williamsburg might be considered, as many gardens. I have driven right past Williamsburg many times, should have stopped, but didn't, on the way to the Outer Banks. Of which they have a first class garden themselves, the Elizebethian Garden, or something close to that.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2003 at 12:02PM
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I found a great garden in an unexpected place. I live near Petoskey, MI and there is a furniture store inbetween Petoskey and Charlevoix on the highway called The Whistling Moose that has a gorgeous garden, as well as a fantastic view of Lake Michigan. The garden is in back of the furniture store, and is worth a stop if any of you are familiar with my neck of the woods.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2003 at 2:03PM
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Dswan(z6 UT)

My favorite garden disappeared during the early 80's when the family property was sold for commercial purposes. Growing up there was a huge vegetable garden in that spot with peach trees, apricot trees, irrigated water and grapes and raspberries. A beekeeper lived next door and kept everything pollinated well. I've missed that garden a great deal. The soil was rich and humousy with a perfect texture.

It seemed like everything grew well there. When I drive by the spot, I still long to walk through that old garden.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2003 at 4:45PM
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Bill_zone6(W. Pa)

One garden isn't mentioned a lot is Fairchild Tropical Garden, just South of Miami, in Coconut Grove. A place to see tropicals in mature growth. Plus in a way, our own houseplants in their proper environment. Monstera deliciosas and climbing Philodendrons in their unusual tailored cut-away design leaves. Leaves designed to allow wind to pass through them, and not tear them to shreds in the tops of trees. The palm collection was touted as the world's largest collection, and still may be. I believe it was hurricane Andrew that took a direct hit on the garden a while back. Bringing this maturity to it's knees. The garden has made a wonderful recovery. This could only happen when the plants themselves are in an environment that suits them so well.

Here is a link that might be useful: Fairchild Garden

    Bookmark   January 12, 2003 at 5:22AM
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ParadiseWaits(z7 NJ)

Winterthur in Wilmington DE. Longwood outside of Philly. Meekerk on Whidbey Island, WA. Hank Schannen's private garden in Jackson, NJ. Deep Cut Park, Middletown, NJ. Colonial Park, Somerset, NJ. Duke Estate, Hillsborough, NJ. Well Sweep Farm, Hacketstown, NJ.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2003 at 6:49PM
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The one I've built! It brings me so much peace and satisfaction, when I'm away for too long I get antsy!

    Bookmark   January 15, 2003 at 4:29AM
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jkom51(Z9 CA/Sunset 17)

If you are ever visiting Northern California, take the time to visit Filoli Estate in Woodside, CA, about 25 miles south of San Francisco. It was built by William Bourne, a mining king, and later sold to Lillian Matson Roth of the Matson shipping line fortune.

She lived in Hawaii most of the time but Filoli was her 'gardening estate'. It is 200 acres, now run by the National Trust. Landscape students from all over the world come to do internships there.

About 20 acres are landscaped gardens, but because Lillian really did love to garden, it's done as a series of different small gardens, all opening onto each other. There's a rose garden, a Shakespearean knot garden, a Dutch garden, an Italian garden, a water garden, etc.

There are some incredibly rare plants in the gardens. Lillian became close friends with John McLaren, the Head Gardener for Golden Gate Park (SF's answer to NYC's Central Park). Whenever McLaren would get shipments of rare plants, some of them would mysteriously make a journey south to be planted in Filoli.

It is open March through October. The website is www.filoli.org. Guided tours are done by reservation only during the week, as I recall; they are the best way for first-time visitors. Remember that our spring in Northern CA is in March/April; summer starts in May; August (since our summers are dry) bakes the hills brown so there's little in bloom except for roses, lavender and rosemary, although those are beautiful enough!

I would sell my soul to have the garden house. It is the most gorgeous, peaceful, perfect garden room I've ever sat down in. Simple, elegant, and classic.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2003 at 12:40AM
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Bill_zone6(W. Pa)

Wow, what an articulate piece of information on Filoli. It has been on Victory Garden before. I lived in the area at one time, but didn't know of it.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2003 at 8:06AM
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If you're ever in the Frederick, Md area, Surreybrooke Herb Farm is a real treat. The name is misleading because they offer much more than just herbs. It's been featured in a number of garden publications and has recieved numerous awards. She (Nancy Waltz) sells unusual annuals, perennials, roses, herbs, trees, shrubs and alpines.
Aside from the beautiful cottage gardens, there's a parterre, a knot garden, a maze, ponds, a scree and...
Well heck, see for yourself, take the tour.
I will just add that the gardens have progressed quite a lot since these photo's were taken in 2000. The childrens garden is now finished and evey year there's something new and exciting.

BTW Bill, It's the Elizbethan Gardens in Manteo NC, very nice.

Here is a link that might be useful: Surreybrooke Herb Farm tour

    Bookmark   February 7, 2003 at 12:20AM
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Bill_zone6(W. Pa)

Thanks Penny, for the suggestion and web site. With a few more additions, maybe we can make a map using these as stops along the way.

    Bookmark   February 7, 2003 at 12:26AM
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Oh my...I just found another one by accident!
Take the tour of "lazyssfarm" below. This one is in Charlottesville, Va. That's not TOO far from me and I just might have to take a trip this spring.

*as I sit here gazing out the window at the white stuff coming down*

I made my 1st trip to Longwood back in October. We didn't get to do the whole tour because it was pouring rain and we weren't equipped with rain gear. The conversatory is beautiful and I did notice that the parking lot area was very nice.

Here is a link that might be useful: Lazyssfarm

    Bookmark   February 7, 2003 at 12:16PM
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jkom51(Z9 CA/Sunset 17)

Oh, gosh, just I needed -- another on-line nursery to peruse (NOT!) Thanks, penny_md6! Looks wonderful!

    Bookmark   February 7, 2003 at 10:31PM
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The most incredible garden I have ever seen is the Butchart Gardens in Victoria BC, Canada. It is 55 acres of spectacular flowers, roses, sunken gardens, lawns, and fountains that Jenny Butchart originally started in 1904 on her husband's rock quarry. 2004 is the garden's 100th anniversary! It is worth the trip if you have never seen it!

    Bookmark   March 10, 2003 at 3:56PM
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I live in Southern California and have been to many gardens in the U.S. - I truly love Longwood Gardens and I also enjoyed Winterthur's Gardens. Here is So. California Descanso and Hungtington Gardens are pretty wonderful - but those greenhouses at Longwood were pretty incredible. I'm sure some of the European gardens are wonderful - ah, some day when things are more politically stable.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2003 at 3:13PM
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My favorite university gardens (so far) are Cornell University's Plantations in Ithaca, New York, and the University of Kentucky's arboretum (Lexington).

My favorite general gardens are the Brooklyn Botanic Garden and Longwood Gardens (Kennett Square, PA).

    Bookmark   March 18, 2003 at 10:18PM
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