Shady Behavior: 20 Great Plants for Partial Shade Gardens

“Ferns are the embodiment of green thoughts in a green shade and if a leafy shadow could take root, moss would surely be the result” –Hugh Johnson ‘Principles of Gardening’

I was always drawn to shady nooks as a child, especially if they beckoned from around a corner. In my mind, a deep green space spoke of mystery and enclosure with its long shadows and dappled play of light. This fascination has continued into adulthood where these memories now inspire many of my designs, particularly when it comes to creating a partial shade garden.

It’s a funny thing. In garden design, we often employ hedges, fences and walls to provide a sense of privacy and refuge; yet a shade garden uses none of these devices to evoke exactly the same thing. How is this so? It’s the plants themselves that create the feeling of sanctuary. They do this through their shapes, sizes, textures and most importantly, their contrasting tones.

A grouping of contrasting tones

A great shade garden, just like in painting, draws on contrasting light and dark tones to create a visual sense of depth in the landscape. Dark toned plants (in particular, ones with dense foliage) appear to move backward in the garden while light toned plants are forced forward. The successful combination of these key elements is what gives the shade garden its irresistible allure.

There are so many great shade-loving plants with beautiful flowers. But, if you’re looking to create that feeling of mystery and enclosure, start by

 

Variegated foliage

Variegated leaf of Polygonatum odoratum, Solomon’s Seal

In a shade border, plants with variegated foliage act as beacons, lighting up shadowy spaces and helping to create a feeling of breadth. Look for plants with cream, white or lime margins (or spots) and plant them at intervals among drifts of solid green foliage to create a ‘dappled’ look. The effect is alot like the reflection of moonlight on water.

Variegated Dogwood, Cornus alba argenteo-marginata

Hosta ‘Francee’ and Hosta sieboldiana ‘Frances Williams’

Pulmonaria ‘Trevi Fountain’

Broad leafed sedge, Carex siderosticha ‘Variegata’

Iris pallida ‘Variegata’

Candidum caladium

Solomon’s Seal

 

Dark foliage

Dark green foliage of Japanese yew, Taxus cuspidata

In painting, artists use dark tones to create the illusion of depth and make lighter colors ‘pop’. The same goes for the shade garden. Dark foliage tends to recede, leading the eye deeper into the garden. It also creates a nice backdrop for lighter-toned plants. If you edge the inner curves of your border with small, dark-leaved plants, it will make them look deeper.

Japanese yew, Taxus cuspidata 

Heuchera ‘Obsidian’

Rhododendron (any)

‘Illustris’, Elephant’s EarColocasia esculenta

 

Blue foliage

Blue hosta

Blue injects the perfect note of calm into a border. The cool shade provides a tranquil contrast to dark or variegated foliage. It’s not an easy color to find, however, as most blues tend towards purple, which produces an altogether different result.

Hosta ‘Blue Angel’

Hosta ‘Fragrant Blue’

Hosta ‘Hadspen Blue’

Fothergilla x intermedia ‘Blue Shadow’

 

Silver foliage

Silver-toned leaves of Brunnera macrophylla

A little touch of silvery foliage in the shade garden acts as a foil to other plants. It also shimmers in the moonlight. Don’t overdo it, though. This tone brings things visually forward. Too much silver and you risk losing that sense of depth.

Brunnera ‘Jack Frost’

Japanese Painted Fern

 

Lime Green foliage

Chartreuse flowers of bright green Lady’s Mantle

There’s nothing like a splash of lime green to lighten up the shade border. Lime calls attention to itself in a different way than white. More cooling, it brightens softly, like a light bulb on a dimmer.

Hosta ‘Twist of Lime’

Lady’s Mantle, Alchemilla mollis

Heuchera ‘Key Lime Pie’

Creeping Jenny, Lysimachia

 

Big-leaved plants

Giant leaves of Hardy Begonia, Begonia grandis

If you really want to make an impact, go big with these large-leaved shade lovers. Big-leaved plants placed in the back of the garden attract the eye and increase the sense of depth.

Indian Rhubarb, Darmera Peltata

Giant Leopard Plant, Ligularia tussilaginea ‘Gigantea’

Begonia grandis ‘Alba’

 

Denver Botanic Gardens Showcases the Best Of Western Design

Reflecting pool in the Denver Botanic Gardens

If you haven’t been to Denver, you may think Cheesman sounds like a strange place for a world-glass garden. But, the old-line neighborhood plays host to one of the best display gardens I’ve toured in decades. No matter the season, the Denver Botanic Gardens is sure to impress, and impress me it did, with its distinctive spaces presenting plants from all parts of the world.

 

ABOUT

Located at York Street, the Denver Botanic Gardens unfolds gradually, as step by step one beautiful garden flows seamlessly into another. There are 17 arid gardens showcasing plants that thrive in Colorado’s dry climate, internationally inspired gardens, ornamental gardens, shade gardens and water gardens. And that’s not all – there’s an ornamental vegetable garden and countless garden ‘vignettes’ in between, enough to make your head spin with all the horticultural inspiration.

Here are some highlights of the different gardens I visited.

The O’Fallon Perennial Walk

I love to meander, so we didn’t bother looking at the map and within moments found ourselves at the base of the O’Fallon Perennial Walk. Backed by a hedge of formally pruned native juniper (Juniperus scopulorum), the impressive border featured many of the plants I use in my designs back East. There were generous drifts of colorful bearded irises, yarrow, perennial geraniums, lime green lady’s mantle and ice blue amsonia (Texas Star) along with roses, boxwood and barberry, to name just a few.

Apricot Iris germanica

Aside from the beautiful plants, the cool thing about this border is its design. The hedged borders are angled so that the views from the north end (viewed in photo) make the south end appear farther away than it actually is. I also couldn’t help but notice that the plants were double the size I’m used to seeing – must be the dry Denver air!

Next up were a series of gardens called the Romantic Gardens. The Tuscan-style Schlessman Plaza features rustic stone columns, stucco walls and a pair of brick and stucco pavilions. The formal beds are planted with perennials and shrubs and flanked by ornamental crabapple trees.

Schlessman Plaza

Ornamental crabapples at Schlessman Plaza

The Fragrance Garden features raised beds of bright-colored perennials including  Achillea ‘Moonshine’, Dianthus ‘First Love’, Geranium ‘Johnson’s Blue,’ Monarda ‘Marshall’s Delight’, Nepeta and copious amounts of Love-In-A-Mist (Nigella) all accented by the silvery foliage of Buddleja alternifolia ‘Argentea’ (Silver Fountain Butterfly Bush) and Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’. The drought-resistant plants and shrubs are further enhanced by the grey stucco wall.

 The Fragrance Garden

Rounding a corner, we stumbled on an elliptical garden centered on a brilliant red and yellow Chihuly sculpture. The sunken garden entitled The Ellipse features roses from the May-Bonfils Stanton collection along with hydrangeas, lilies and daylilies chosen to coordinate with the jewel-toned glass (which reminded me of a red hot poker flower). The sculpture was specially commissioned for the Denver Botanic Gardens and installed in 2014. It is called ‘Colorado.’

The Ellipse in honor of Nancy Schotters

Path bordered by Sweet Alyssum that encircles the Ellipse

Reflecting pool at the end of the Fragrance Garden

The Herb Garden, to the left of the Fragrance Garden, was designed for ‘health and culinary enjoyment’ according to the brochure. The garden is maintained in collaboration with the Metro Denver Herbalists and includes basil, thyme, oregano, lavender and lemon verbena and other Italian herbs. Some of the herbs are used to make soaps and other herb blends that are sold in the Garden Shop.

Herb Garden medallion made of Wooly Thyme

Close-up of the medallion

Adjacent to the Herb Garden is the Scripture Garden, a contemplative space filled with plants that originate in the ‘Fertile Crescent’; the area common to Christianity, Judaism and Islam. Many of the trees, shrubs and flowers symbolize the various faiths’ religious stories. This includes a stand of olive trees whose species is native to the Mediterranean area. Unable to withstand the Denver winter, the trees spend the coldest months indoors in the garden greenhouses.

The Scripture Garden

From this quiet area we headed to the Space Pyramid, a futuristic-looking grey and black mosaic pyramid located at the heart of the garden. The Pyramid is home to a 60-inch spherical globe that simulates how the earth looks from space.

Space Pyramid and fountain at Denver Botanic Gardens

Adjacent to the Space Pyramid is the Ornamental Grasses Garden. Who knew there could be such variety? The beautiful garden encompasses a wide variety of traditional and new ornamental grasses including Indian ricegrass, switchgrass, cutleaf staghorn sumac and compass plant (Silphium laciniatum) a native to the eastern plains of Colorado.

Ornamental Grasses Garden

The sculpture in the back is called ‘So Proud Of My Children’ and was created by Nicholas Kadzungara.

I loved this garden space with a sheet metal sculpture by Alexander Calder entitled ‘Polygons on Triangles.’ It was the perfect counterpoint to all the torch lilies.

Another view of the orange and yellow torch lilies, so striking popping up from among the grasses.

June’s Plantasia showcases the plants and planting traditions of Asia. River rocks, designed to mimic the flow of water, cover the paths and change direction depending on where you want to walk. For example, the direction of the river rocks on the bridge matches the direction of the stream below.

River rock path in June’s Plantasia

Close-up of river rocks

Allium silhouetted against a black rock in June’s Plantasia

Here are some garden vignettes near June’s Plantasia

Iris ‘Wake Up Call’

The Dwarf Conifer Garden displays the largest collection of Jerry Morris’ dwarf conifers in the world. Morris is internationally known for his groundbreaking work with conifers, including the development of species with more desirable traits like bluer foliage, longer needles and better disease resistance.

Jerry Morris Conifer Garden

A secluded spot nearby.

Compared with all of the greenery we had just experienced, the Rock Alpine Garden was a breath of dry air. This garden features plants from high elevation regions around the world. The landscape includes over 2000 different plant species. Rugged rocks add to the garden’s appeal.

Rock Alpine Garden

The Gates Montane Garden was created in 1961 by S.R. DeBoer as a tribute to the late Charles C. Gates.  It is designed to mimic the mountain setting of the Gate’s property in Bear Creek Canyon. The shady woodland path is a nice contrast to the Alpine Garden with its mix of native trees, shrubs and wildflowers.

Columbines in the Gates Montane Garden

The Plains Garden depicts what the Denver landscape looked like prior to development. The majority of the seeds were procured from within 30 miles of Denver and represent such signature plants as Blue Grama grass, Buffalo grass and Liatris punctata (spotted gayfeather.) This garden survives on precipitation alone.

Plains Garden

Water plays a dominant theme in the Denver Botanic Gardens through which it meanders, alternately taking the form of streams, reflecting pools, fountains and water courses. We stepped out from the Plains Garden to encounter a large paved space crisscrossed by water pathways. Known as the Monet Pool, the water garden features an impressive array of waterlilies, lotus and cattails.

The Denver Botanic garden is a world leader in aquatic gardening and variety and breadth of aquatic plants.

The Monet Pool

The Potager, or Kitchen Garden, is encircled by the Monet water pathways. The edible plants are arranged in ornamental patterns.

Le Potager

These gardens are only a fraction of what you can see at the Denver Botanic Gardens, which brings new surprises with each passing season.

At the time of our visit, the gardens were embellished by sculptures by Alexander Calder. For more information on the gardens, click here for the Denver Botanic Gardens website. And don’t forget to visit the Conservatory for more eye-opening experiences.

 

A Little Taste of Japan In the Heart Of Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires’ lovely Jardin Japonés

There are so many beautiful, themed gardens in Buenos Aires I’ve almost lost count. But, there’s one last gem I’ll profile before we return next week to the United States. Located in the city’s Palermo neighborhood, it’s the zen-like Jardín Japonés. Think acres of green foliage, a shimmering lake spanned by lipstick red bridges and colorful clusters of over-sized koi, and you’ve got the picture.

We happened upon the Jardín Japonés on a sizzling hot day when most of the other public gardens were closed. Spying some Asian-style buildings amidst the trees in the distance, we made a beeline across a park towards the sloped-roofed structures. Along the way, we passed the customary assortment of cheerful dogs and professional dog walkers.

A professional dog walker (paseaperro) in Plaza Allemania

Located behind a tall wall and bordered on all sides by traffic-congested avenues, the Jardín Japonés proved to be a quiet oasis in the heart of a boisterous city. Originally given as a gift to Buenos Aires from the Association of Japanese Immigrants, it was constructed in 1967 to celebrate the visit to Argentina by Japan’s Prince Akihito and his wife in May of that year. The future royals’ visit was a big deal for Buenos Aires and the garden was to receive other similar official visits over the ensuing decades.

Entrance to the Jardín Japonés

Today’s 6-acre garden, however, is mainly the work of a Japanese born landscape architect named Yasuo Inomata. The city of Buenos Aires hired Inomata in the mid 70’s to redesign and enlarge the Jardín Japonés to look more like a traditional Japanese garden. Inomata modeled his design after a zen garden, focusing heavily on the critical elements of harmony and equilibrium. The renovation, which was completed in 1979, has since become a bridge for the city’s residents and its visitors to understanding the Japanese culture.

The first thing you notice when you enter the Jardín Japonés is a large artificial lake spanned by three traditional-style Japanese bridges. Painted a distinctive deep red, the bridges each take different forms and carry different symbolic meanings. The largest of the three is the Puente Okayama, also known as Puente Zig Zag Okayama. The flat bridge skims just above the water and meanders back and forth across the northern end of the lake.

Puente Okayama (the zig zag bridge)

The second bridge, called Puente Yamagata, takes the traditional arced form. Also painted red, it is a standout in the middle of the lake. (Also perpetually clogged with tourists, so a clean photo is pretty much out of the question.)

Puente Yamagata

The third bridge, el Puente Plan Ibaraki, is made from rough-hewn planks in a burnished red. The site plan shows it traversing a small cove at the opposite end of the lake. During our visit, however, we observed only two piers facing each other across the water. I loved how the open space between the two piers raised questions as to whether they were meant to connect or simply observe each other. Whether or not this was purposeful, it was one of the most memorable spots for me in the garden.

Puente Plan Ibaraki

At the far end of the park is a large Japanese building housing a restaurant, library and cultural center. There is also a traditional-style Japanese tea house. But what really caught my eye was this checkerboard lawn to the right. Crafted from bright white paving stones and lime green grass, it made me feel like we had popped in on Alice in Wonderland.

Checkerboard lawn

Directly behind the checkerboard lawn and adjacent to the center is a shop selling traditional Japanese plants such as bonsai, orchids and azaleas as well as other native flowering plants.

Plant store

And on the other side of the tea house is a rose garden.

Rose garden

A big draw for children is the giant koi and carp that live and feed in the garden. They swim in colorful clusters along the fringes of the lake and under the bridges where visitors are encouraged to feed them. Their open mouths can be seen bobbing above the surface.

We stopped for a fruit smoothie at the Salon Mie next to a large bell dedicated to immigrants. Its big gong-like sound resonated across the park and sent powerful ripples through our bodies. It was the perfect accompaniment to the next small patio, the Patio Hiroshima, which displays three numbered trees that are descendants of larger trees that survived the bombing of Hiroshima.

The sign reads that the surviving trees were located within a 2000 meter radius of the center of Hiroshima and that the city has registered 170 trees ‘a-bombardeados’ for which they have been given a plaque and a special name. That name is:

HIBAKUJYUMOKU (TREE SURVIVING THE ATOMIC BOMB)

In addition to these highly symbolic areas, the garden boasts more than 150 species of trees and a huge variety of plants representing a combination of Japanese and native Argentinian species. There are acres of white and pink azaleas, Japanese Matsumae-fuki cherry trees. mugo pines, magnolias and Japanese maples as well as native oaks, cedars, tipas and Pal Borracho trees. There are also beautiful mini waterfalls.

And carefully composed arrangements of stones.

The many different elements appear to have happened there naturally, although in the architect’s own words, this is a deliberate misconception.

Inomata said:

Japanese gardens that I create express an element of Buddhism called gokuraku (pure land). In these gardens, the trees and flowers are not arranged in a structured manner so that they can imitate what is found in nature [  ]. At first glance, they may appear disorganized, but in reality they follow an order.

Unlike most other public gardens in Buenos Aires, the Jardín Japonés costs money, with all proceeds going to its maintenance, which is administered by the Fundación Cultural Argentino Japonesa. The garden is also home to festivals and other cultural activities promoting Japanese culture within the city.

For more information on the garden, its location, hours and scheduled activities click here for the official website.

Buenos Aires’ El Rosedal: Taking Time To Smell The Roses

‘A collection of old roses gives a great and increasing pleasure.’

–Vita Sackville-West

There are rose gardens and then there are rose gardens. It’s not every day you come across a rose garden covering nearly 10 acres. But Buenos Aires’ El Rosedal, commonly known as the Jardin de las Rosas (Rose Garden), is just such a place. And the magnificent space is immaculately maintained and surprisingly, free to the public. Continue reading

The ‘Roomba’ of Gardening: Tertill Is A Robot That Weeds

Franklin Robotics ‘Tertill’ promises to weed your garden for you

Last year was a particularly big one for weeds, with many of us struggling in vain to control them in our gardens. But thankfully, just in time for next summer, there’s an invention that just might alleviate this tiresome chore. It’s called Tertill and it proposes to do the weeding for you. Continue reading

Longwood Gardens’ Nightscape Delivers A Mind-Bending Experience

Glistening cacti at Longwood Gardens' Nightscape/here by design IMG_1348

Giant cacti illuminated by LED lights in Longwood’s xeriscape garden

If you’ve been reading my blog over the past couple years, you already know that I’m a huge fan of Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania. The 1000+-acre property of gardens filled with specialty trees, shrubs and flowers never fails to move me, no matter what the season. And now Longwood has added yet another way for visitors to appreciate its extraordinary beauty. It’s called Nightscape.

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View of the Conservatory lit up for Nightscape

Billed as an ‘ immersive nighttime adventure’, Nightscape is a multi-sensory experience featuring moving images, lights and original music. The action gets going in the gardens just after dark when LED lights suddenly transform the giant property into a technicolor dreamscape. As visitors move through the Conservatory and outdoor gardens, the lights continually change form around them, presenting a kaleidoscope of varying colors and patterns.

Nightscape takes place across seven locations around the gardens, including the main lake, the Flower Garden Walk, the Topiary Garden and the grand rooms of the indoor Conservatory.

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LED lights transform the Palm House into a magical kingdom

The display is accompanied by original music composed especially for the display. The ethereal melodies float through the gardens, adding an otherworldly dimension and heightening the experience.

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A giant grass takes on a new personae

It’s quite a thing to walk through the Conservatory at night with all the colors changing around you. As the lights move across the plants, they highlight parts of the garden while obscuring others. The reflection of the tree branches in the windows of this part of the installation made it seem like a wild storm was brewing.

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At other times the lights form patterns steeped in symbolism that cause you to pause and reflect.

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Outdoors in the Topiary Garden, the clipped forms of giant boxwood are enhanced with colorful, whirling patterns. To my eye, the shrubs looked like spinning tops.

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But a few seconds later, the same bushes switched to black and white, conveying an entirely different feeling.

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The Rose Arbor, adjacent to the Flower Walk, features a wild assortment of oversized plants and shrubs illuminated in neon colors. The garden changes shape as the lights move around it revealing crazy daisy-shaped blooms and glowing rocks.

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On the far side of the Rose Arbor, the Flower Walk, which directs visitors deeper into the garden, takes on heightened dimensions with its stripy lights; almost as if there was a stadium full of people above you.

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My daughter took a video of the Flower Walk. I think you’ll get the idea.

The show was created by Klip Collective, an experiential art shop that specializes in integrating projection lighting and technology with storytelling to create compelling experiences.

Nightscape runs now through October 29, 2016, rain or shine. The display stays open until 11 pm. Ideal viewing times are after 8 pm in September and 7 pm in October.

 

Bellagio’s Arcadia Garden Is A Sure Bet In Vegas

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Bellagio Hotel’s Conservatory

Most people go to Las Vegas to gamble, but recently when I found myself in the city for a few days, I went searching for a garden. I didn’t have to look far. At the heart of the Bellagio Hotel, I discovered a garden oasis known as the Conservatory. As befits such a colorful city, it was overflowing with thousands of bright-hued flowers, intense-smelling shrubs and large, floral-embellished ocean creatures; all part of the hotel’s summer exhibit titled Under The Sea. Continue reading

The Inspiring Gardens of Annapolis’ William Paca House

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In Annapolis, Maryland there’s an impressive brick mansion that towers over the tiny streets of the city’s historic district. Built in the 1760s, the home once belonged to William Paca, a signatory to the United States Declaration of Independence and third Governor of Maryland. The property had seen many changes over the years until in the 1960s, it underwent a painstaking restoration. Today, the Paca House and Garden is a faithful representation of what a Colonial-era residence used to be, offering visitors a quiet respite in the very heart of this capital city.

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RESTORATION OF THE GARDEN

The restoration of the William Paca garden took an unusual course, aided as it was by two seemingly unrelated events separated by almost two centuries. The pair of events ended up providing important details about the original garden, its buildings and plants, enabling historians and horticulturalists to recreate the original 18th-century landscape with near-perfect precision.

The first event took place in 1772 when Charles Willson Peale (1741-1847) painted a full-length portrait of Paca standing in front of his garden. The painting documented key architectural features of the landscape, including a red brick wall, central pathway, two-story white summerhouse and Chippendale-style bridge.

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Portrait of William Paca by Charles Willson Peale

The second event took place over a century later during the early 1900s when the house functioned as a hotel popular with visitors to the U.S. Naval Academy. To make room for new dormitories, the Academy added fill dirt to a portion of the property. By happy accident, the filler acted as a cushion, preserving all of the brick foundations of Paca’s original garden and outbuildings.

According to Joseph Sherren, an intern with the curatorial department,

“It was one of those happy accidents that come about once in a lifetime.”

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Main view into the William Paca Garden

Drawing on the details in the Peale portrait as well as what was revealed in the excavated foundations, researchers and historians gradually reconstructed the bones of the original garden. Researchers then consulted Colonial-era garden manuals and plant lists to determine what plants might have grown in the various spaces.

Today the garden is composed of a series of terraces enclosed by red brick walls characteristic of colonial gardens in the Chesapeake region. Four parterres, laid out in precise geometric shapes, make up the middle terrace of the garden. The third terrace of the garden slopes down toward a fish-shaped pond and the Wilderness Garden. The property’s focal point, the two-story white summerhouse, presides on a small hill at the end of the garden, just like it does in Peale’s painting.

 

THE TOUR

The tour begins on the uppermost terrace, which was designed to serve as a platform for entertaining and for viewing the garden. It is the first glimpse a visitor has of the garden.

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The next two levels are laid out in parterres. The Rose Parterre (on the left) features many heirloom roses including alba roses, which were being grown as far back as the Middle Ages. There is also a broad assortment of companion annuals and perennials. During my afternoon visit,  the flesh pink rose ‘Maiden’s Blush’, purple allium, verbena bonariensis, perennial foxglove and tropical-looking yellow canna lilies were all blooming.

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Rose Parterre

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Close-up of purple verbena bonariensis

The Flower Parterre, which lies directly opposite from the Rose Parterre, was designed to provide three seasons of colorful flowers. At the time of my visit, pink and apricot daylilies, soft pink echinacea and purple liatris were all in bloom. Spiky blue veronica, golden lantana and lavender-pink Stokes’ asters rounded out the mix.

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The Kitchen Garden features a colonial-style shed and trellises and latticework crafted from branches and string. I observed lush crops of salad greens, snap peas and squash growing in raised beds, a tiny shelf stacked with herbs planted in terra cotta pots and many heirloom varieties of apples, pears, plums, cherries and figs trained as espaliers. (Products made from the fruits, herbs and vegetables grown in the garden are sold in the gift shop.)

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Kitchen Garden

On the second terrace, the Holly and Boxwood Parterres provide year-round interest with their carefully maintained geometric designs.

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Boxwood Parterre

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Holly Parterre

The Summerhouse is the focal point of the garden. It lies in the wilderness area, which consists of a series of meandering paths through beds of mixed plantings. Reminiscent of the ‘picturesque’ style of gardening that was popular in Colonial America during Paca’s time, the miniature, thumb-shaped building is reached by crossing a Chinese-style latticework bridge that spans a fish-shaped pond.

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The upper floor of the two-story building served as a viewing point for the garden during the summer while providing the Paca family with cool garden breezes from the Chesapeake Bay.

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Tail-end (literally) of the fish-shaped pond

 

THE ART OF DRAINAGE 

Paca was an innovator when it came to designing ways to channel the natural runoff across his property. He built a system of drains that diverted water into pleasing garden elements. At the lowest level of his garden, he constructed a brick canal to direct water into a spring house. It is a key architectural element in the lower terrace of the garden.

Today, the natural spring, which is still active in the spring house, feeds the pond. In Paca’s day, the water was also repurposed for household use.

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One of Paca’s brick canals used to drain water from the garden

 

The State of Maryland and Historic Annapolis bought the Paca mansion in 1965 to save it from demolition. They spent the following decade restoring the house and garden. In 1971, the site was recognized as a National Historic Landmark. For more on the house and gardens, click here for the website.

The property hosts the annual William Paca Garden Plant Sale on Mother’s Day weekend every year.