May 3, 2009

We Do Ladew, Part I

Saturday morning, an old friend and I headed north of the city to the famous Ladew Gardens and their Garden Festival. We were looking forward to spending time in the gardens, which were glowing with beautiful pink, purple and coral azaleas and thousands of tulips, not to mention the incredible topiaries.

I am going to do three posts about Ladew: the Garden Festival first, and then the house, Pleasant Valley Farm and then the famous topiary gardens.

We started out in the main tent where some of the non-plant vendors had set up, and since it had just started raining hard, it was the best place to be. Pennoyer Newman had set up their beautiful pots which are all cast from old pots. I loved the look of these pots, but as you may remember, my back "garden" is only 12 x 12 feet!

Another of the vendors had a selection of garden antiques, including some great old galvanized watering cans.
Many of the vendors had items pertaining to fox hunting, since Harvey Ladew was a huge fan of the sport.
One of the other charming notes was the flower arrangements scattered though the tent (and the house) that were composed from flowers from the property.
The vendor that I was most interested in visiting was Stiles Colwill’s Halcyon House Antiques.
He has the most amazing taste, which I’ve always admired. He was at the Moroccan party a few months ago – but we missed each other. So I was pleased to have a chance to speak with him for a few minutes. We talked about me doing a special post about his new Halcyon House venture. Stay tuned for that.
As we were talking, I noticed Bunny Williams browsing among the Halcyon House items, and snapped a picture of her. We were not able to stay for her book signing, which was held later in the afternoon.
As the rain tapered off, we headed outside to see the plant vendors. There were a lot of shade plants, as well as some other unusual specimens. Here are some pitcher plants that were in terrariums:
A woodland trillium:
A billy goat gruff in metal, which made me think of the song in the Sound of Music.
I think that this wire urn would look brilliant in my back yard with a huge pot of cherry tomatoes and basil in it.
More tomorrow…


  1. I'm so jealous! What a gorgeous event. And those peonies and viburnum(?) are making me swoon.

  2. Mama... if you're talking about that arrangement, I think the pink flowers are tulips!!! they've got zillions there!

  3. silly willy - you got Bunny AND John Rosselli right next to her! wow. I love that urn. I love the house. I love the mural. the story. the whole thing. wonderful! can't wait for part 3.

    why are people so obnoxious? i can just hear the FLASH!!!!! why would anyone need a FLASH!!!! omg.

  4. Love the fox in front of the hen house painting. We have foxes in our suburban neighbor. Such amazing creatures.

  5. I want the white strawberry pot in the last photo.

    Thanks for sharing this event.

  6. A Bunny sighting! I am just catching up on your fabulous Ladew posts. Very inspiring.

  7. What a spectacular property! And event! Thanks for sharing these photos, I wish we had a sale like this Miami, you would think people are so garden oriented here, but no. I really enjoyed all the posts.


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