From last week, “Two years ago I reported on private gardens in California’s Sierra Foothills that open for charity, 6 each year, for one weekend in May. I missed last year’s event…but this year on the occasion of a friend’s birthday I made my way through the Nevada County countryside to visit four on Saturday, with a stop in the middle for lunch at Sergio’s Caffé in Grass Valley. Then two more on Sunday, not far from one another south of town, both of which were among my top three."
This week I give you the most flamboyant of the three. I suspect many of those who toured this year’s gardens might think of this one as Best. It was certainly the splashiest and, in some ways, the most interesting. However, in my opinion, those who created it didn’t seem to know when to stop, with whimsical items scattered around an already busy garden, as if growing things weren’t enough. And in a garden as lush with botanical interest as this one, the bric-a-brac seemed a distraction from the otherwise striking displays. And, despite it’s size, because of the sheer number of plants and distinct areas one moved through, it felt claustrophobic. The hillside location, I’m sure, added to the sense of congestion and my eyes would have welcomed more open spaces upon which to rest. Despite these flaws, it evoked a kind of wonder that such a complex space in design and terrain could be maintained to such a high standard.
The Rose Garden...
... with very tidy garden shed tucked into a corner, and...
...a heavily laden pergola between the roses and a lawn by the house.
Then up a hill to a Japanese-themed wood...
...and on my way out, figs, my favorites, and an upscale hen house.
Next week, a 3 hour drive to the San Francisco Peninsula
and a visit to one of the country's finest houses and gardens, Filoli.
Others of PortMoresby's contributions here.