Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Hillwood Gardens

I spent much of Saturday at Hillwood with JCB and friends. She's already blogged about the estate's gardens through her eyes HERE and I thought I would give it my own (long-winded) spin. If you want to learn more about the estate, I did more extensive posts on the grounds and house back in November, you can read them here. The house, the greenhouse and the Japanese Garden. Above, the approach up the driveway -heavily wooded.
I love gardens. Unfortunately, I have black thumbs but was born with the gene of appreciation. There is a lot to appreciate at Hillwood; surely the most spectacular gardens in DC.The last of the spring tulips greeted us at the visitors center.
Unusual specimens are all around -check out this color combination near the back porch!
White wisteria grows over a pergola which surrounds the rose garden.Marjorie Merriweather Post, the foundress, is buried in the middle of her rose garden under a marble column.
The formal gardens are closest to the house. These were on view from her bedroom, as JCB said in her post.The retro blue chairs are original to Marjorie's reign here.I'm a sucker for the beautiful garden statuary.It was a damp day and plants were heavy with their new leaves and the moisture. Everything just weeps: A very luscious garden.
The plaque above states that this ivy is from Buckingham Palace.
And that this boxwood is from nearby Mt Vernon.The moss was green on the Japanese Garden waterfall.
I thought these Iris in the cutting garden were really spectacular. I had never seen any like this before.
Wisteria drips over the edge of the breakfast room.It will become even more full and lush later in the season.On the other side of the breakfast room is this newly gilded fountain. I was told they cover it in the winter time to protect the gold leafing and keep it bright.Not all of the beautiful blooms are outdoors though. The green house houses a huge collection of orchids of all different types and colors. I loved these reddish orange orchids: for some reason they made me thirsty! Reminded me of blood oranges I suppose!Moss growing on a water storage container. Is there anything prettier?
Visit Hillwood! Information on their WEBSITE.

18 comments:

An Aesthete's Lament said...

Fabulous fountain. Truly impressive. Any details about who designed it, et cetera?

little augury said...

this is on my summer trip list! thanks for the look (both posts) I love that awning! what a more than amazing woman-read a bio of her some time ago. G

ArchitectDesign said...

AAL -the only thing I could find out about the fountain was that it was recently reguilded by "the guilder's studio, inc.' and that it is a lead fountain with 23.5K gold leaf. I have a contact there and I'll email him to see if he knows anything.
Little Augury - you have to visit Hillwood if you make it to dc! It's right in the city, very easy to get to -only 20 minute walk from the metro!

pve design said...

I am in love with that scallop edged awning. Was it metal? What a gorgeous spot.
pve

Style Redux 2 said...

A really beautiful post. Have you been to Ladew Topiary Gardens outside of Baltimore? If not, I think you would really enjoy it.

bwemerson said...

'most spectacular gardens in DC'. But surely the Dumbarton Oaks Gardens are the equal of Hillwood's in scope, and far the superior in design quality, lovely though Hillwood is...

Thanks for all your wonderful posts---I love the variety and the tours of places, like the Moore mansion, not regularly seen.

bwemerson said...

'most spectacular gardens in DC'. But surely the Dumbarton Oaks Gardens are the equal of Hillwood's in scope, and far the superior in design quality, lovely though Hillwood is...

Thanks for all your wonderful posts---I love the variety and the tours of places, like the Moore mansion, not regularly seen.

La Maison Fou said...

Just beautiful. I have a pergola similar that covers my walkway to the studio each morning. A lil over a 2 minute commute!
Thanks for sharing,
Leslie

ArchitectDesign said...

Patricia, the scalloped edge was GLASS! can you believe it?

home before dark said...

There is something to be said for the "gene of appreciation." I think without it civilization would be an accidental hodgepodge. Lovely place to view. I'm out the door to hold chaos at bay in my own garden, at least for a moment. Thanks for the images.

Janet said...

I loved those plaques for the boxwood and the ivy! Your photos came out great ~ and the light was really tough that day.

ArchitectDesign said...

Thanks Janet, I just loved those plaques!!

HBD, Have a great day gardening!

Rose C'est La Vie said...

Can't seem to find a way to comment on your November post about the house. As an architect, what do you think about the beautiful oriel window at the rear? Of course you'll love it; but the placing of it is eccentric/asymmetric. Do you think that was the intention?

ArchitectDesign™ said...

Rose,while the front and rear elevations are somewhat balanced, they're still assymetrical (with a symmetrical center bay). The side elevations, as you can see, have very little emphasis on symmetry so the offset bay window (or Oriel) doesn't bother me, personally. It houses a different room (her dressing room), while the two to the right of it are her bedroom - so I guess it's simply a case of the exterior showing a different use on the interior or 'form follows function'. I appreciate a symmetrical facade but I'm not a stickler for it: it doesn't bother me here!

katiedid said...

Beautiful, just beautiful.

ALL THE BEST said...

So beautiful! I love the wisteria grows over a pergola!

YSLGuy said...

That is amazing. Thank you for posting. Now I really wish I had gone here while I was in DC last week.

Nadine @ BDG said...

beautiful pics-- especially the formal garden ones-- I'm enjoying surfing around your blog. Best, Nadine