Monday, May 12, 2014

Pennsylvania Garden Tour, Part One

These have been busy gardening days, so much going on in the garden (tree peonies blooming!).  Last week I even took off a few days of work so that I could plant after our plant-buying weekend in Lancaster County.  I have all my pots planted, a few new perennials are in the ground, and I have planted all my zinnia seeds (and they are already coming up).

And then on Wednesday of last week, Eileen, Prudy, and I took a field trip to three private gardens in the Swarthmore, PA, area. We joined a group of gardeners from Green Springs Park and got on a bus at the crazy hour of 6 am for the three hour trip to visit the gardens. We visited one garden, then stopped for a picnic lunch at Jenkins Arboretum, then on to two more gardens, arriving home around 7:30 pm. The owners of the gardens were all there to welcome us and took us on a tour of their gardens, explaining the history and development of their gardens. They were so friendly and informative and answered lots of questions. It was such a great day and I took so many pictures, so I am going to break this up into two or three blog posts. First to visit was the garden of David Culp, author of one of my very favorite gardening books, The Layered Garden. I have gotten a lot of ideas from this book, and was so happy his garden was included on the tour.

As you enter his garden down a gravel driveway, the whole left side is a hillside, planted with dogwoods, hellebores, azaleas, daffodils, primroses, trilliums,  snowdrops, rhodos, and much, much more. I have never seen so many hellebores, there were thousands, including some very interesting black hellebores. They planted the entire hillside themselves, and placed all the rocks, stone paths and stone walls.

There were so many different little gardens on the property--the hillside, the driveway garden (below), a street garden, perennials borders, a vegetable garden, patio garden, courtyard garden, and a ruins garden. I loved all the different spaces.

I thought these potted mosses were so great.  Potted works of art.

This planted strip along the street had everyone taking pictures. The colors were spectacular, we all loved that chartreuse pop, especially the golden hops climbing up the fence. And the tulips here and in the rest of the gardens were amazing. Several of these are antique varieties, I am definitely planting  more tulips next year. (And by the way, they replant the tulips every year.)

Hellebores and Tulips

Tulips and Euphorbias

One of my favorite gardens was this 'ruins garden.' Planted in the alcove of a stone wall (formerly a stable), it had lots of succulents, potted plants, trough gardens, a gorgeous tree peony about to bloom, and lots of antique tulips. Whoa, I would love a little spot just like this.

Their patio garden was shady, cool, and comfortable. We all wanted to sit down here and sip iced tea.  Lots of ferns here, along with more hellebores and wildflowers.

Prudy and Eileen enjoying the gardens

We saw this garden at a great time with all its spring blooms. I would love to see it later in the season with the hydrangeas, roses, lilies...such an inspiring garden. We were in heaven.

No comments:

Post a Comment