One of the joys of the Garden Tour Season I always look forward to, is the tour put on by Georgia Perennial Plant Association. Several chosen gardens are opened to the membership for one week- end a year. Most gardeners would have bottled water and iced tea available for the visitors. Margaret Moseley would serve her famous Almond Tea whenever her garden was opened. Last week Pimento Cheese party sandwiches were passed around on silver trays for the guests! (Did I forget to mention that in the last post?)
For several years I served as the Tour Chairperson of this organization as well as The American Hydrangea Society. I know firsthand about what it takes to create a successful event. So I was not surprised that in recent years the format has changed and only one garden is opened for a day. I like this change. One no longer has to budget their time and rush to see as many gardens as possible in the allotted timeframe. These are SPECTACULAR gardens where one could happily spend the entire day and still not take it all in.
This year, the garden of Lyndy Broder was the featured garden. Lyndy is a dear friend and an expert on the genus Clematis. Her knowledge and talents however, go far beyond Clematis. She has collected an amazing variety of unusual and seldom seen trees and shrubs to create a personal arboretum ‘par excellence’ on her property….and almost all are festooned with the most delicious varieties of Clematis one could imagine.
A wall of seed grown species welcome visitors
Golden Larch (Pseudolarix amabilis) with Clematis
The Canadian Geese Meadow leading to the lake above.
The Sanctuary of St. Fiacre, patron saint of gardeners ( loved working with Lyndy on this project)
When a garden of this caliber is open….. everyone comes. This turned into a reunion of great plantsmen and gardeners, a huge amount of talent here, the energy was palpable.
This is the first garden tour I attended this season, there are several more on the agenda. I promise to post about them all.
Nothing says Welcome quite like a gate. I saw several that intrigued me on the Gardens for Connoisseurs Tour to benefit The Atlanta Botanical Garden.
My friend Becky rushing in to get detail photos of this delightful gate. We were tripping over each other in excitement. look at these ….
Clever designs and beautiful workmanship. We loved all the details. Gates like these were in several of the gardens, a wonderful piece, both practical and whimsical.
Several of Atlanta’s finest private gardens open for this annual event. These are all designer gardens with regular and knowledgeable crews to tend them. They are perfectly groomed. One will never find a yellowing leaf, no space left where a plant was lost, some annual potted plant is placed in its stead, very tastefully.
Touches of whimsy…….
The summer containers were packed with perennial foliage plants and annuals.
I was particularly taken with a table centerpiece …..
and of course the peaceful sound of water.
All in all a no miss event. With our weather this year, the gardens will be more beautiful that ever.
Climbing the wall; Hydrangea anomala petiolaris & Clematis ‘Freckles’ using it for support.
The Phlox divericata encouraged to naturalized between the daffodils.
I have pruned all the Hydrangea arborescens ‘Annabelle’, and almost all the Hydrangea paniculata. I still have to deadhead the Hydrangea macrophylla but I like to attend to those last lest I get too enthusiastic and remove this years flower buds.
Pruned some of the clematis that require it and took an inventory of the garden.
Some of the news is not good. I have record losses this year. There is no sign of life on several Clematis, and my favorite Quince ‘Apple blossom’ has bit the dust.
Over the last few years I have let some shrubs go and now they require some drastic pruning. Good thing I bought a good excellent lopper. That is another post, promise.
Finally there are signs of spring. The weather has been chilly in Georgia for an unusually long spell and bloom times are off.
Looking out the window, the Snowball Viburnum (Viburnummacrocephalum) is in its beautiful lime green phase and I can see the Yoshino Cherry tree (Prunus subhirtella ‘Yoshino’) blooming in the background.
These tulips ,below, were planted in the cutting garden about 5 years ago and although I cut them with their foliage every year, they still reappear. I must look up my orders and identify them.
Next week promises to be warmer and I expect an explosion of blooms. Meanwhile spring pruning is underway (late of course).
Due to an injury I have been unable to garden. I finally got to take a walk and snap some photos so here goes.. a bit of this ‘n’ that.
This scene makes me smile every time..the faded flowers on the hydrangea and the Camellia sasanqua ‘Sparkling Burgundy’ perfect partners.
Stewartia showing some of its famous exfoliating bark. This was the year to remove all the lower branches, it will look somewhat awkward for a few years…
Camellia sasanqua ‘Daydream’ I rescued this plant from the trash at a nursery. Margaret Moseley told me it was the only fragrant sasanqua in her garden…If Margaret was growing it ..I needed to have one too; but it was an old variety and no one carried it. One Autumn day, plant shopping in Alabama, I caught a sweet fragrance and went to investigate…there it was, a broken scraggly mess, lying in the trash heap… the treasure I was seeking! They gave it to me.
Beautiful colours on the lacecap hydrangea…
eggplants and peppers still going in the potager…
and the clematis that bloomed all summer & going strong still… Clematis ‘Odoriba’
“You should have seen it last week!” The familiar phrase heard from gardeners, when showing visitors around. Well to avoid that I’m posting a time-lapse kind of garden tour. Photos from the garden over the last two weeks.
The Dogwoods in the meadow, like most other spring-flowering plants, cooked in the 80 degree temperatures. the blossoms did not last long. Above, in their moment of glory with the native Phlox (Phlox divericata).
Above, the view from a second floor window, Dogwoods, Lady Banks Rose (white selection) & Viburnums. Those ‘Snowballs’ (Viburnummacrocephalum) are trained into trees.
Love the tree right by the house.
Early clematis, blooming now for several weeks.
Along the North Border….Viburnum ‘Kern’s Pink’ & Baptisia…. (below)
followed by Viburnum opulus, Purple smoke tree (Cotinus coggygria ‘Royal Purple’ ) & Styrax obassia ..heavenly fragrant bells.
How wonderful to be back in Georgia, where it appears we are in full-blown spring….
The gardening to do list grows daily as the overwhelming season is upon us. Trying to separate the list into A) what will make an impact in the garden visually, and B) plant requirements. e.g. weeding and feeding.
All the camellias, both in the Circle of Friends, and the Camellia Walk are in bloom along with the Hellebores.
Permeating the air is the fragrance of Daphne odora…. The garden is truly magnificent. A celebration of all the senses.
Yesterday I visited with Margaret Moseley. As usual I came home with a list of ‘must have’ plants.
Margaret has been an inspiration for many gardeners. Every season her garden is filled beauty wherever one looks.
Above, a welcoming entrance… the large tree to the right is a Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba), straight ahead is a Japanese Flowering Apricot (Prunus mume).
Margaret laid those stones when she was in her 70’s!
Below, a seating area beneath a flowering cherry tree (Prunus serrulata ‘Kwanzan’) surrounded by azaleas, camellias and underplanted with a variety of textured & fragrant groundcovers…
Well thought out focal points….
Camellias in bloom…. my new plant list…
Some of these Camellias are heirlooms, rare in the trade. While they may be a challenge to locate, don’t give up, they are out there.
One of my personal favorites is Camellia japonica ‘Ava Maria’ (above). When I first saw it in Margret’s garden the hunt to acquire one was on! Her very generous daughter Jane located it for me. It is a gift I treasure, as is Margaret’s friendship.
Note: plant names are visible if cursor is on photo. To read more on Margaret & her garden visit GARDEN PHOTO OF THE DAY. She is often featured.
Well, almost wordless. No photography allowed in the gardens in Charleston. Only shots allowed are from the public sidewalk. There was an exception where we obtained permission from the owner who was present in her garden for questions. No matter, walking down Charleston streets is a lesson in gardening effectively on a postage stamp! More to follow.