This beauty is Lilium 'First Choice.' Ain't she grand?
Today, instead of working in our own garden (not that it doesn't need it), we decided to go on the island garden tour, an annual fundraiser for various arts programs. This year, the tour included six gardens ranging from an extravagantly planted garden surrounding a French provincial style house, complete with a stunning view of the largest harbor on the island, to a "stumpery," a more woodland garden that contains over one hundred large tree stumps salvaged from various sites and then underplanted with thousands of woodland plants. We visited three gardens today, and will see the other three tomorrow (including the stumpery, which we're intrigued by).
The gardens we visited today all had extensive hard-scaping in place, which certainly helps define a garden. If we actually owned the house we lived in, we'd be doing that, too. The first garden we visited was the densely planted one, where everyone seemed simply dazed by the sheer amount of plants present. It was quite impressive, especially in that most of the plants were not that unusual, and some were downright old-fashioned (Maltese cross, peonies, lilies, roses). Despite the sheer volume of plants, the garden is broken up into neatly defined zones that made it seem more intimate. My favorite plant was a primrose with a tall, fox-tail of a flower spike in pink, with a tuft of red a the top. Stunning.
The third garden we visited is located on a pretty steep site, which has been terraced, with lots of clever little paths stepping down here and there. Full of old-fashioned roses that smelled great, and little enclosed "rooms" with raised beds for growing vegetables, the most enchanting detail were the many places where small beach rocks had been set on their sides to form patterns. Lovely.
Tomorrow, the stumpery.
Meanwhile, here's a couple more shots from our garden. The first is Asarina scandens, sometimes called Trailing Gloxinia or Trailing Snapdragon. The last photo is Clematis 'Niobe,' one of the most beautiful large-flowered clematis, at least to our eye. This year we're getting quite a prolific number of blooms. This clematis continues blooming for us over a long period, making it a definite winner in our book.