Fall Berries
Garden Elves

Gail and Layanee's big adventure!

High 72 F 
Low  58 F

Entry garden and rose garden at Blithewold, click to enlarge

Many of us have had the pleasure of meeting and spending time with fellow bloggers.  Many of us actually blog in order to share our passion and addiction for plants and all things gardening.  How could fellow gardeners be any other than strong, caring and well-rooted people?  I think it would be impossible. Many of you have already met at the Austin Spring Fling and know the joy of which I speak. I have met a few other bloggers, Pam from Digging, by phone, Heather from Heather's Garden, stopped in at Ledge and Gardens with her husband for a great visit and chat during the summer.  This past few days  I had the extreme pleasure of meeting and sharing plant passions and addictions along with many other topics with the award winning, Blotanicals, fellow blogger, Gail from Clay and Limestone.  Our big adventure started when I picked Gail up in Providence where she had spent the weekend enjoying the company of her son.  Sad to say I did not get to meet him as he was already at work but I did meet his friend, Val, and we chatted long enough for her to feel comfortable enough to let Gail go off with a total stranger.

We headed straight to Blithewold to meet up with Kris Greene, hort expert, gardener, artist, and fellow blogger.  Blithewold is a beautiful place due to the efforts of the staff there which includes Kris, Gail, Fred and Dan.  We made our way to the north garden,Dsc_0008 slowly as there was so much to see, and there was Kris working away neatening all even though it looked quite pristine in spite of the heavy rains of the weekend.  Kris was able to give us a tour of the gardens and point out some of the exceptional plants on this estate.  Here is a picture of the Clerodendron in full berry. Dsc_0006 It is the Harlequin Glory Bower and if I were near the coast it is a plant I would definitely have in my garden. It is a zone warmer at Blithewold than at Ledge and Gardens. Dsc_0007_2 The close up shot of the berries shows their striking  navy blue color with the red bract.    Dsc_0010 This Sequoia is the second largest in the northeast.  Dsc_0009 The  tree and shrub beds are filled with interesting specimens and edged and layered to great effect.   The above path leads through the bosquet and over to the greenhouse area where the annual display beds Dsc_0025 are in full glory. Dsc_0017 This is a new bed with the blue seat in the background and that large blue plant is the Salvia uliginosa which Kris writes about in her last post.  It is large, stunning and a beautiful blue.Dsc_0018   I took many pictures but the story they don't tell is the conversation between three plant lovers.  How can you resist the obvious when you see a plant such as thisDsc_0011 one called 'Hairy Balls'.  I know, there are three but that just leads to more mischief!  We had to move along to sample the ground cherries which neither Gail or I had ever tasted. Dsc_0037 Kris and Gail picked and I shot photos with their permission.  Ground cherries are curious looking little berries hiding behind a paper coat Dsc_0034 and Kris's description of their flavor as somewhat like kiwi is an apt one although I did taste a hint of melon and perhaps some oak.  Oh, no, that would be wine...no oak!   About Gail, she has a great curiosity about all things.  That is a gift which I enjoyed immensely. Dsc_0038 You can see the fun my compatriots are having in the garden.   We foraged, we ate, and we moved on as the ground cherries stimulated our appetites and we knew it was past the lunch hour for all of us

.  We moved on down to the pond gardens and the rock gardens Dsc_0043 and then made our way back through the bousquet where we said our goodbyes to Kris who still had a half day of work in front of her.  I can't thank Kris enough for sharing her garden, information, seeds,  and work with us both.  We have the memories shared to return to on those wintry, blustery, non-gardening days. 

Gail and I stopped for lunch and then proceeded to visit my sister as she was right across from the apple orchard where we picked up some local fruit.  Gail was exposed to family!  She survived and even thrived as my sister, Sue, is charming if I do say so myself (she hates to garden but has other gifts).  I was killing time until we could go to Lois's garden.  Dsc_0108
Lois's primula in spring!
I didn't take pictures this time at Lois's but she has been blogged here before and has a most incredible garden and she gave us a great tour.  On to Ledge and Gardens.  Gail will have to tell you about that.  We walked, talked, and had dinner with the EM.   I love to entertain in small groups and a group of one is even better.  You can get to know a person and, for me, that is one of the great pleasures in life. Gail and I had more adventures the next day but I will end this now with the end of a perfect day spent in the company of a contemporary and a garden and plant lover. I thank you Gail for seizing the day, so to speak, and coming for a visit to Ledge and Gardens.  We parted with  much more to talk about and that is a great way to part.  I so look forward to our next adventure!