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Posts Tagged ‘Old Germantown Road Garden’

Friday, 11 July 2014

Garden Bloggers Fling

a fourteen hour day!

a reminder of our action packed fourteen hour day!

Old Germantown Gardens

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After an exciting time on the narrow Old Germantown Road, with a steep drop off on one side and a very large tour bus on a narrow two lane road, we got to the garden of my dreams.

This garden is one I have visited before, once in 2007 and again in 2011. On those two occasions, I was able to get around the whole garden, which certainly was not true this time. If you would like more details of the lower gardens, you might want to peruse those entries. Also, here is an article about the garden.

It is quite possibly my favourite garden of any I have ever visited.

garden in the entry, drive, down a long steep hill

garden in the entry, drive, down a long steep hill

There was some excitement as the bus almost backed down the hill to make the descent easier for a passenger with a bad knee, and one of the owners rushed out, crying out “Noooooo!” and waving his arms to stop it. The bus chugged and churned as it heaved its way back uphill again. Turns out that they have had a bus and a dump truck stuck down there and a regular tow truck was not enough to get them out!

dahlias and alliums in the entry driveway

dahlias and alliums in the entry garden

When one walks around the house onto a big patio with a greenhouse, one comes to one of my favourite features of this garden: my favourite water feature ever.

It starts with this round pool by the large greenhouse (full of exotics, but in 90 plus degree weather, I did not go in).

It starts with this round pool by the large greenhouse (full of exotics, but in 90 plus degree weather, I did not go in).

round

From the round pool, a rill runs across the patio.

From the round pool, a rill runs across the patio.

and curves down beside the stairs

and curves down beside the stairs

with a little waterfall

with a little waterfall

into this deep, deep pool.

into this deep, deep pool.

I was entranced with it all over again.

the view from the greenhouse terrace

the view from the greenhouse terrace

Tetrapanax beside the little deep pool terrace

Tetrapanax beside the little deep pool terrace

My other posts about this garden have a better story of how this area fits together; heat was addling my brain during this visit so the continuity is lacking.

He guards the sit spot by the little deep pool.

This gator guards the sit spot by the little deep pool.

Below the gator:  several bloggers were smitten with this plant.

Below the gator: several bloggers were smitten with this plant.

exotics over the low wall

exotics over the low wall

long flowers of I wish I knew what draped on the wall

long flowers of I wish I knew what draped on the wall

I found I could get down the stairs from the terrace to the beginning of the dry garden but me sore leg would not go down the sloping gravel path.

round and spiky, yuccas? reminiscent fo Cistus Nursery.

round and spiky, yuccas? reminiscent fo Cistus Nursery. Huh. I forgot to straighten that photo, didn’t I!?

So I went back up the pool terraces and around the house to the driveway, then down a sloping path (very carefully) into the shady side of the garden.

gravel path

gravel path

the boggy shade

the boggy shade

I wanted to get to a pool that I remembered from before.

from below, looking to the house

from the shade below, looking to the house

shade

A little pond

A little pond

a quiet pool

a quiet pool with a stream at one end

that feeds into the back of this pool, on the end where the shady bench is

that feeds into the back of this pool, on the end where the shady bench is.

pond koi

pond koi

plantings by the pond

plantings near the pond

bee

a fish sculpture in the pond

a fish sculpture in the pond

and another

and another

Allan got some photos from the same spot...

Allan got some photos from the same spot…

including how the small upper pond feeds into the bigger one

including how the small upper pond feeds into the bigger one.

photo 3

and a view from the bench, where I briefly plopped down next to another blogger to take a photo.

and a view from the bench, where I briefly plopped down next to another blogger to take a photo.

more fish admiration

more fish admiration

I miss my natural spring fed pond at my old house. Especially the smell of fresh water.

pond3

Leaving the pond with some reluctance, I made my way to the bottom of the lawn that slopes up to the house, remembering a photo the garden owners had shown tour guests last time, of a herd of elk meandering through before the entire garden was securely fenced.

lawn

a nice level path

a nice level path

a sit spot under an open gazebo

a sit spot under an open gazebo

tall fragrant lilies

tall fragrant lilies

lilies and clematis

lilies and clematis

bloggers on the deck

bloggers on the deck

through an arbour

through an arbour

nearer to the house

nearer to the house (Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’)

beside the path...I love a gravel garden

beside the path…I love a gravel garden

blogphoto

down a slope, a sculpture

down a slope, a sculpture

at the corner of the house

at the corner of the house; I believe that’s the greenhouse roof showing

looking down

looking down

I remembered a secret little circle of down there somewhere, with a couple of chairs, up some stone steps, but I just could not get down there to find again. Allan went all the way to the bottom of the hill, but none of his photos show it, either. I know it’s in one of my two older posts.

I was not lacking for sights to see on higher ground.

I was not lacking for sights to see on higher ground.

path with Eryngium giganteum, Allan's photo

path with Eryngium giganteum, Allan’s photo

some steps; I kept circling around the paths trying to find the levelest ways to walk.

some steps; I kept circling around the paths trying to find the levelest ways to walk.

The garden is on such a big acreage that the bloggers were wandering freely.

The garden is on such a big acreage that the bloggers were wandering freely and sometimes in solitude.

the dry garden from below

the dry garden from below

blophoto2

verticality (Pam Fleming would like this).

verticality (Pam Fleming of Back Alley Gardens in Gearhart would like this).

rose arches

rose arches

looking back

looking back

Here I came to the end of where I could walk; I just could not bend my sore calf to get down a slope like this.

Here I came to the end of where I could walk; I just could not bend my sore calf to get down a slope like this.

telephoto of huge terraced tomato growing further down the slope

telephoto of huge terraced tomato growing further down the slope

blogphoto2

back to the gravel gardens

back to the gravel gardens

dry

I keep trying to grow such a handsome Lobelia tupa; I just don't think we have enough heat at the coast.

I keep trying to grow such a handsome Lobelia tupa; I just don’t think we have enough heat at the coast.

I want this tall yellow verbascum; mine don't seem to branch like that.

I want this tall yellow verbascum; mine don’t seem to branch like that.

I find a mostly level way around the house, here just about to go under the deck.

I find a mostly level way around the house, here just about to go under the deck.

the lawn from just below the house

the lawn from just below the house

They have so much room for conifers.

They have so much room for conifers.

Oregano rotundifolium (I think) atop a wall

Oregano rotundifolium (I think) atop a wall

I turn back because of some stone steps and have another attack of Lobelia tupa envy.

I turn back because of some stone steps and have another attack of Lobelia tupa envy. The wall is to the terrace with the pool and greenhouse.

bloggers from England at rest

bloggers from England at rest

just so much richness

just so much richness in plants

looking down on the rose arches

looking down on the rose arches

I have made my way back up the steps to the terraces, into the house, and onto the deck.

I have made my way back up the steps to the terraces, into the house, and onto the deck.

the lawn from the deck

the lawn from the deck

looking down from the deck:  Allan's photo

looking down from the deck: Allan’s photo

Meanwhile, Allan had a different experience of the garden. He started making his rounds with his two cameras, one that kept going out of focus and one with a low battery, so I lent him my iPhone.

Allan’s iPhone photos:

looking back up the stairs to the lower terrace, the one with the small deep pool

looking back up the stairs to the lower terrace, the one with the small deep pool and the gator sculpture

me picking my way along on the level

me picking my way along on the level

photo 5

below the house

below the house

rose arch

rose arch

b3

terraces

terraces from below

down into the lower garden

down into the lower garden

About 80 bloggers had dispersed into this garden.

About 80 bloggers had dispersed into this garden.

down the slope into the shade

down the slope into the shade

steps

steps

photo 5

I remember from before this place where two paths diverge.

I remember from before this place where two paths diverge.

woodsy

woodsy: Allan says several bloggers were trying to capture the light on the flower to the left.

The lower garden abounds in Cardiocrinum giganteum.  If they had been blooming, I would have slid down there on me arse if necessary.

The lower garden abounds in Cardiocrinum giganteum. If they had been blooming (with fragrant white lily flowers), I would have slid down there on me arse if necessary.

b6

cardiocrinum appreciation society

cardiocrinum appreciation society

under the canopy

under the canopy

Every area is full of interest.

Every area is full of interest.

photo 2

swirlies in the shade

swirlies in the shade

gate and fence, debris dumped outside

gate and fence, debris dumped outside; Allan says this is “backstage”.

Allan wonders if tour hosts want their debris piles photographed. I am always interested in the working part of a garden.

b8

looking up to the house

looking up to the house

so much room for trees!

so much room for trees!

photo 2

I see he has made his way back to the lawn.

I see he has made his way back to the lawn.

the blue chairs

the blue chairs

bedecked

 

We reunited back at the house just before it was time to catch the bus.

Back in the house; one of our hosts make cookies; he is famous for always making cookies for garden tours.

Back in the house; one of our hosts make cookies; he is famous for always making cookies for garden tours. (Allan’s photo)

The owners do all of the maintenance themselves (and, at least the last time I visited, they still work, as well). They said that it is sometimes….what was the word, daunting? overwhelming? in the fall.

inside the front door

inside the front door

the driveway garden from the front porch

the driveway garden from the front porch

brollies by the front door in case it rains when tour guests are there

brollies by the front door in case it rains when tour guests are there (Allan’s photo)

near the front door

near the front door

looking from the driveway to the lawn

looking from the driveway to the lawn

above the driveway

above the driveway

atop the driveway wall

atop the driveway wall

a last look before the gate

a last look before the gate

the driveway gate from the bottom looking up

the driveway gate from the bottom looking up (Allan’s photo)

and we head up the steep driveway to where the buses were parked on Old Germantown Road.

and we head up the steep driveway to where the buses were parked on Old Germantown Road. (Allan’s photo)

Oh, that steep driveway! I had thought about it earlier in the day, worried about my ability to walk on such an incline, and remembered it as even steeper than it was. There is a pedestrian gate off to the side of the big gates.

This is still my favourite garden, yet now I am aware that with any frailty, a garden on a steep slope is difficult to navigate, which is why earlier this year I quit our one job (passing it on to a capable and talented local gardener) that is on a steep hill like this.

Next: the final garden of the day, just up the road a piece.

Here is blogger Pam Penick’s view of the Germantown Road garden on Fling day.

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