An unapologetic plant geek shares advice and opinions on gardening, the contrived and the natural landscape, as well as occasional topics from the other side of the gate.

March 12, 2017

I Love Longwood, Again

     In conjunction with attending last October's Perennial Plant Conference, two coworkers and I were able to visit Chanticleer, and Longwood Gardens - twice. On the night before the conference we went to see Longwood's Nightscape, which is a state of the art combination of original music, color, animation, and movement - all projected onto the garden's plants. You will have to take my word for how spectacular it was, as I was unable to capture any of the video due to exhausted batteries. It was worth every penny of the $27 price of admission. Two days later on the way back to Virginia, we stopped by again for a more traditional visit; neither of my coworkers had ever seen Longwood in the daylight. I was uncharacteristically conservative with my photography, but what follows is some of what we saw.

     Helenium
Longwood Helenium

     Gomphrena, maybe 'Fireworks'
Longwood Flower Garden Walk Gomphrena

      Hibiscus 'Fith Dimension'
Longwood Hibiscus 'Fifth Dimension'

     Sarracenia
Longwood Sarracenia (3)

     The next three photos were taken in Longwood's Theatre Garden.
Longwood Near Open Air Theater (3)

Longwood Near Open Air Theater (2)

Longwood Near Open Air Theater (1)

     I took this photo in their Idea Garden, and I got the idea that I really like this combination of colors. 
Longwood Idea Garden (2)

     Being fall, garden mums had a huge presence in the plantings along their Flower Garden Walk, which is always a must-see for me. I had to fight the urge to run jump into these great big bosomy pink mums.
Longwood Flower Garden Walk (1)

Longwood Flower Garden Walk (2)

     I have never been a fan of rainbow color schemes in garden design. Nonetheless, I had a hard time pulling myself from the a large display of assorted Dahlia.
Longwood Dahlias (1)

Longwood Dahlias (4)

Longwood Dahlias (2)

Longwood Dahlias (3)

Danette, Les, and Joelle at Longwood (1)


     Unrelated to Longwood, there is about a week left for bloggers to enter my annual Winter Walk-Off. Click here for details.

February 26, 2017

I Love Chanticleer, Again

     Last October, I found myself falling in love with Chanticleer all over again. This was my fourth visit, and I am not going to say it was my favorite visit, because I would also say that about trips 1, 2, and 3. This was, however, my first time in the rain, though not visit-cancelling rain. It was sporadic enough to just keep your umbrella handy, but not always open, and light enough to enhance photography - and I took a lot of photos, so I'd recommend loading up your pixel hopper before going any further.

     Front Entrance
Chanticleer Entrance (1)

     One of my favorite spots at Chanticleer is always the Teacup Garden, and I like that the gardeners get to change it from year to year. This fall the colors seemed sullen, in an attractive way. I was really smitten with how the raindrops beaded on the Euphorbia cotinifolia, and how the variegated Asclepias curassavica played so well with the grass, which I think was Nassella tenuissima. 
Chanticleer Teacup Garden (1)

Chanticleer Teacup Garden (6)

Chanticleer Teacup Garden (3)

Chanticleer Teacup Garden (5)

     Not sullen, the Cutting Garden was full of color, and being late in the season it towered over our heads.
Chanticleer Cut Flower Garden (1)

Chanticleer Cut Flower Garden (3)

Chanticleer Cut Flower Garden (5)

     Ruin Garden
Chanticleer The Ruins (1)

     Gravel Garden
Chanticleer Gravel Garden (1)

Chanticleer Gravel Garden (2)

Chanticleer (34)

     Salvia 'Limelight'
Chanticleer Salvia 'Limelight'

     Colchicum
Chanticleer Colchicum (2)

Chanticleer Colchicum

     Chanticleer House Garden
Chanticleer House Garden (1)

Chanticleer House Garden (2)

Chanticleer House Garden (3)

Chanticleer House Garden (6)

Chanticleer House Garden (7)

Chanticleer House Garden (10)

     This terrace sits at one end of Chanticleer House, and overlooks a large lawn and the gardens beyond. As a gardener, I can imagine ending my day sitting here watching the day turn to dusk, cool drink in hand.
Chanticleer House Garden (11)

     If you would like to see the remainder of my photos from this trip, please visit my Flickr page, and you can also see previous Chanticleer blog posts from 2016 here, and from 2011 here. Currently I am hosting my annual Winter Walk-Off, and I invite all of my fellow bloggers to participate.