Today was another busy one, with visits to four gardens labeled as distinctive in the tour description. Very appropriate. Our first garden was the Topiary Garden, where they’ve been working over 20 yours to train yews on forms replicating Georges Serat’s famous painting of a Sunday afternoon in Paris. What a laborious process, but most of the plants are filling their forms well at this point. Even more amazing, considering that the yews and other plantings are growing in about 10″ of soil over the remains of an old school that occupied the site before it burned in the early 1980′s. Pretty impressive project and what an interesting concept.
Next was the Park of Roses, another Columbus MetroPark project. We had a nice stroll through thousands of roses, but perhaps the most applicable for Arkansas was the Earthkind Roses area, showing hardy, disease-resistant varieties. They had particularly beautiful specimens of Sunny Knock0ut, which they consider the best of the series. Another favorite thriving for us at the Gardens is ‘Easy Does It’, the showy apricot rose shown here. A beautiful place and the roses are very well maintained, with much of the labor donated by volunteers. There were lots of good ideas for our new rose garden project.
After a nice lunch, we headed to yet a third great garden maintained by Columbus MetroParks, Inniswood. This formerly private garden has beautiful mature forests and a lot of interesting areas, including another beautiful herb garden and a great children’s area with native prairie plants. But my favorite spot was a small but amazing brick ruin, complete with neat little private seating areas, arbors, pools, and all kinds of little subspaces.
Our final stop was the private home of retired engineer . A fifty year project, filled with an amazing private collection, including some really unusual cultivars like a variegated zelkova and a yellow tipped oriental spruce. And some great art he’s collected, really finishes off a great and very interesting garden.
Tomorrow we’re off to the Franklin Park Conservatory and Gardens, looking forward to yet another new garden for me.