This weekend I attended American Hydrangea Society’s Annual Garden Tour with Julieta of the outstanding food blog LINDARAXA. This was the very first time we met in person, what a warm, delightful, accomplished and charming lady she is. We connected immediately.
Check her blog for a recipe of the most delicious banana muffins she baked for our mid morning snack, I have to admit eating more than one on the drive home!
On with the tour, the first garden is that of Michele and Alan Browne….
From the moment I saw the yatsuhashi bridge spanning the dry creek bed, I knew this garden was going to be special, and it was, on so many levels.
Michele, did her homework, the garden perfectly compliments the architecture of her magnificent Arts & Crafts style house.
The Japanese influence was evident throughout.
The lantern (below) on the side of the path indicates that you are welcome to enter the garden, if it was placed ON the path, it would mean they are not receiving.
Along this path is a connoisseurs collection of hydrangeas, all young and recently planted, Michele had to wait till the trees she planted grew enough to create the dappled shade the hydrangeas require. (this garden is only 6 years old)
Designed as a stroll garden it has the requisite water features or representaions thereof …
As one comes round the back of the house one discovers an outdoor room adjacent to the house…..
a courtyard with pergola (notice the repetition of the elephant leg columns, that make it one with the house) From this vantage point one can enjoy a dry landscape or meditation garden creating the illusion of water, promontory and rocky shore.
While typically raked sand, crushed slate is used here for ease of maintenance.
All in all, the clever use of conifers, japanese maples , and the Three Friends of Winter ( Black Pine Pinus thunbergii, Flowering Apricot Prunus mume & Bamboo) …..
the gardener has successfully created a garden of great beauty, serenity and harmony. BRAVA Michele!!
Hydrangea season is in full swing. I have, over the last 15 years, been ‘collecting’ hydrangeas and devising many ways to display them in a garden setting. They bloom a very long time and even when they pass their ‘prime’ they are still very effective; in fact I love them more when they are faded. They truly carry the southern garden throughout the summer months.
H. macrophylla ‘Westfalen” above…
Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Jogasaki’
Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Mme Emile Mouillere’, turning pale blue above..
Hydrangea arborescens ‘Annabelle’ in the garden with companion Kerriajaponica ‘Picta’ above..
The path leading to “The Circle of Friends” in my garden this morning … above
Some of the best hydrangea gardens in Atlanta will be on tour Saturday June 9th. Although this is a members only tour for THE AMERICAN HYDRANGEA SOCIETY, one can become a member/ buy a ticket, at several Atlanta Garden Centers or at 3 of the featured gardens on the day of the tour. (1 ticket $25.00 2 tickets $40.00)
Gloria Ward, the tour chairperson, has selected 7 gardens, the main criteria for which is being well designed including beautiful hydrangeas.