May 2, 2010

Ladew Garden Festival

Yesterday, I was the guest of the Ladew Topiary Gardens at their Second Annual Garden Festival. A friend and I attended last year’s premier event and it was marvelous, but the weather wasn’t great.  You can see some interior shots (illegally taken) here, and some of the garden last year here and here.Ladew 2010 003 This spring has been much quicker than last year, mainly due to the snow, so the property was much more leafed out this year. Everything was greener, flowers that usually bloom later in the season were fully out and best of all, there was very little damage to the property during the successive storms.

Naturally, the highlight of the Garden Festival is the range of unusual plants on offer, as well as the antiques and garden ornaments presented for sale.Ladew 2010 009One of my favourite stores, Halcyon House, had a booth which was full of gorgeous things, and loads of yellow flowers including mums, freesia and ranunculus. Ladew 2010 014 Things were flying out of there faster than Eric and Stiles could write them up.! It’s no wonder!Ladew 2010 013 

Here are some things I saw in some of the other booths.

Ladew 2010 016 Doll house with iron fencing Ladew 2010 020French garden cloches in blue and white
Ladew 2010 022 French instructional posters Ladew 2010 024 Garden-themed artwork

I loved this hutch filled with old terra-cotta pots and spools of garden twine. More than anything I saw, it reminded me of my visit to Petersham Nurseries outside of London.Ladew 2010 021

As we waited for the tour of the house, Pleasant Valley Farm, to begin, I snapped a couple of images of the exterior of the house. There’s a lovely koi pond just outside the dining room and farm office. To the left is the kitchen and servants’ wing of the house. Ladew 2010 026This is the plant stand that you can see in the image above. I would love to see this with a lot of mossy terracotta pots, maybe filled with herbs.  Just in case you are wondering, there are 13 arms on the stand.Ladew 2010 028 One of the spectacular plantings at the house, aside from the topiaries, is this winding rose that curls its way around the columns on the back of the house.Ladew 2010 030 Everywhere you turn at Ladew, there is something amazing that the garden crew has done.

Window-boxes filled with a cheery assortment of flowers.Ladew 2010 038Rows of bright tulips in every shade in the rainbowLadew 2010 037  Golden Delicious Apples espaliered against the south side of an out-buildingLadew 2010 036 The amazing wisteria plants on the breezeway between the main house and the card room.

Ladew 2010 041 Ladew 2010 043

Tomorrow, we will wander out into the gardens and see the magnificent topiaries, as well as some of the garden rooms.  Ladew 2010 045Thanks again to the staff at Ladew for inviting me to be your guest and to Jonathan and his committee for all of their hard work in making sure the Festival ran as smooth as silk. Bravo!


  1. you are so lucky there is so much history where you are!! we have so little of that in Texas!!!
    love that little dog bed.

  2. Beautiful. Thanks for the eye candy. Every photo was delicious.

  3. I adore Petersham Nurseries. And one can't go wrong with all that twine.

  4. This is soooooo freaky because I just watched on Create Channel, Garden Story & it was all about the glorious Ladew Gardens...just finished.

  5. Lovely post, I used to work at Ladew and it is just marvelous to see people blogging about a place you do not hear or read enough about! I unfortunately had to miss the garden festival this year and your photos are making me kick myself for having done so!


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