Canterbury NH garden tour Aug 7, 2010

defrost49July 30, 2010

I think this is a new fundraiser in Canterbury. Over a dozen gardens to tour. Anyone going?

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Unfortunately, no, since I have to be out of town for work. :>(

It's a fundraiser for the church in town which besides being a place of worship serves the functions of social center and publisher of the town newletter. If anyone does go, I'd be interested in feedback - I'd pass it on anonymously to the organizers to help them out.

Canterbury is a scenic town with many active gardeners and lovely gardens, though I haven't looked at the list to see which ones will be on the tour. (Though I might be a tad biased . . . )


    Bookmark   July 31, 2010 at 2:08PM
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I'm planning to go and should have a friend or two along. Sorry you are going to miss it. With over 12 gardens on the list I doubt if we'll be able to see them all unless they are close together. I think it will be nice to see veggie as well as flower gardens.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2010 at 2:05PM
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I don't know how to post pictures here. But I thought someone, esp Barb, would like a report. I love garden tours. While it's nice to see a private garden owned by someone with an unlimited budget and staff of helpers, I like the ones owned by people like me so I can see some ideas and plants that I can afford. There were 12 gardens on the tour from 10-3 so it was pretty much impossible to see all 12. It was great that bathroom locations were marked. We brought bag lunches but due to time, skipped lunch and only stopped at the parish house to use the bathroom.
It was terrific that every place offered water and cookies. It was a perfect day, not too hot, but we still wanted to drink extra water. The map was fairly clear although I had trouble understanding which road I was coming into town on even though I've been to Canterbury before. Stops were well marked but it helped to have a driver and navigator.
Although my preference is for gardens owned by the average home owner, the 50 acre granite ledge show place alone was worth the ticket price. The tour by the owner was very educational. Neither the house nor style nor budget (strong Japanese influences) are like mine, but the use of existing ledges and quarry rubble was amazing. Some of the quarry pieces were very large sections of granite used for walls, bridges, etc. Climbing hydrangea espaliered along granite walls was equisite. The entire property was indeed a work of art.

I liked seeing vegetable gardens as well as flowers and was thrilled to visit with someone else who loves the lasagna method. Enjoyed the organic practices in another. Enjoyed seeing how others make walkways, mulch and trim. I was familiar with most of the plants but enjoyed seeing how people used them. Wonderful miniature/dwarf hostas in one garden. Same garden also had numerous small containers of succulents.
Enjoyed how people gardened around their entry ways. Liked seeing different garden ornaments from a beautiful metal fish sculpture to bird houses, to blue bottles. My garden needs more art.

The first year of this tour was probably a bonus because the owners had time to give tours. I've been to other garden tours where the owner isn't even present and no one can answer questions. Canterbury has very knowledgeable gardeners. I learned a lot. I especially liked hearing why they chose a certain plant, what problems they were having, as well as the successes. It was also a plus that most of the gardens were fairly close to each other.

I would definitely recommend this tour. I know some owners were disappointed that it was a little late in the season so some of their best plants had gone by but there wasn't the competition from the other July garden tours. Since tours usually use different gardens each year it might be hard to find another stunning show piece like the one with the granite ledges ... but I was absolutely surprised that a garden like that existed in this neck of the woods. Maybe there are other surprises in Canterbury. That garden would have been worth driving many miles to see. My friend and I traveled from nearby towns and I think most owners were surprised that they got some out-of-towners.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 8:43AM
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Figured out how to post photos. Here's the view of the climbing hydrangea on a granite slab wall.

After walking thru the gate you are in the front garden.

The front garden is a series of rooms at different levels with different granite features. Excellent use of creeping thymes as groundcovers.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 6:20AM
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Thanks, defrost! I'm glad that it went well and I'm also glad that you enjoyed it. I have visited the garden you posted photos of, though probably 10 years ago, and it looks like it has continued to progress. The owner has wonderful sense of design. Canterbury does have some great gardeners with quite varied styles! Do you have photos of any of the other gardens?

I only wish that it were another weekend as I always work the first couple weekends in August due to the League of NH Craftmen's Fair in Sunapee, though this year I had work out of state instead. The tour organizers wanted it to be after the Canterbury Fair so that they could get good publicity out through that venue as well as through the state's tourist info, which is why they chose the time. I do agree that for the plants to look their best, earlier in the season would be better. How did you hear about it?

I'll pass your comments on to one of the organizers so that they have some feedback, and I'll hope that if they do it in future years I can find some time to visit a few of the gardens (& let DH do his thing at the League Fair on his own for a bit.)

    Bookmark   August 22, 2010 at 9:17AM
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Hi nhbabs, the granite place was one of the first we visited and the tour took a while. I tried to take photos at another place but they didn't come out very well. We started rushing so we could see all the gardens (but skipped one) and didn't have time for photos. Now, of course, I don't have any records of the lovely container gardens of succulents at one house.

I'm not sure how I heard about the tour in the first place. I remember going to a facebook page. I might have seen it listed under community news in the Monitor and/or maybe the weekly farmers bulletin.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2010 at 1:35PM
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