Sunday, April 28, 2024

Lakewold, Part 1

 On Saturday our garden club visited Lakewold, an estate house and garden located in the Lakes District south of Tacoma, WA. 

The estate began as a summer cottage on the shore of Gravely Lake in 1912. Through consecutive owners it became a grand estate meant mostly as a summer home. The garden evolved, with an Olmstead infulence and later refinement by Thomas Church in the 50's when it was then in the possession of avid gardener Eulalie Wagner. It was donated by her to a non-profit in 1987 and was then opened to the public. 

Tom and I have been here many times, but it was new to some of our club members. It is an impressive place.

The grounds around the house are formal. The outlying areas are much more natural. First the formal gardens:

The great lawn.

There were plants for sale around the house. Yes, we bought a few. 

Camellia petals. 

The lake side view.
My blog put my photos in the wrong order, so now we are back at the entrance.

Plants for sale in this lovely little court yard. 
Vide of the parterres from the shelter of the sunroom. Yes, it was raining, but not heavily, We were good.  

It was the perfect timing for lush new groundcovers, some in bloom, the colorful new foliage of maples, and the boisterous blooms of old rhododendrons.  

Ah, Spring.

Friday, April 26, 2024

It Rained, But We were Ready For it

 Yesterday, Thursday, it finally rained, close to an inch in total, slow and steady most of the day.

But we had been working to be ready for it. In the days prior, Tom did some "logging", getting the very tall, very neglected Oregon Grape along the driveway thinned and cut back. On Tuesday we borrowed our friend's pick up truck to haul it to the yard waste dump.

The Oregon Grape on both sides of the driveway is no longer looming way over our heads.

I helped a little, but not much.

On Wednesday we went shopping for more yard stuff and then Tom got the lawn raked of wind debris, mowed, and fertilized. I got the patio cleaned up and the driveway raked. We both hoped the coming rain would not also come with more heavy wind to undo all of our clean up. It didn't. We enjoyed the rain. We shopped at Costco and I did six miles on my stationary bike. Gotta keep moving. 

Of course I had to get out today, after our Friday breakfast, where Jill was a surprise guest, (she works from home on Fridays) and grocery shopping, to see what's blooming. 

Exotic looking parrot tulips.
Fringe tulips for Tom.
Princess Irene tulips, just because.
The tulip border on the wall is already fading but the unfurling hostas planted in between will soon cover the space. The tulip bilbs in cans will be removed. 

Our one big tree peony bud has bloomed. 
The first columbine. 
Apple blossoms. 
Even in the tulip bulb orders, divergents sneak in. 
The orange tulips here were supposed to be orangier and bloom at the same time as the purple ones, but the purple ones are almost done and much taller. Next year's order will get changed. There are always surprises in gardening. 
I don't pick my own tulips. These are from the grocery store this morning. But no doubt they did come from the Skagit Valley, just as my bulbs did. 

Now the sun is peeking through clouds. Our rain might be over. We have a garden club tour tomorrow. 

I hope your weekend blooms to your liking.