Tuesday, June 30, 2009

More from the ANLD Tour

The Lilyvilla Garden was featured on the front of the tour flyer and brochure, and got most of the local newspaper press. With good reason, as it had the best structure, plantings and personality of all the gardens. I’m not a big believer in the need for a garden gate as a formal entrance to a garden but this one is so well done I’d take it in a second. You enter the gate after climbing a short series of wide concrete steps from the sidewalk.
The plantings were fabulous.
I walked right by these tall Tetrapanax trees without even noticing them! Shame. Luckily my husband spotted them right away and called me back. There was another smaller one in a corner. The trunks were so substantial. Loved the simple rusted wire trellis for the Clematis to climb on.
There were several Caster Bean plants around the garden, and the Acanthus was a different variety for me, with dramatically cut leaves and sharp bits on the flower spikes.
I give the LilyVilla garden my Best in Show award! Of course the fact that it was totally my style of garden might make me just a little bias.

At the next garden we found simple plantings and a nice solid retaining wall with character.
Along with beautiful Flax.
Walking on to the next location we discovered this odd sight. Poor trees! Two of them were getting the treatment. I loved these tomato cages at the next garden.
And I got so excited when I saw these agave-like plants, they were perfect! This home was not part of the tour but I planned to find out exactly what these fabulous plants were and get their source!...
But as I got closer I realized they were “perfect” because they are FAKE, Plastic Plants!!! Who would do such a thing!?

As for the tour…the voyeur in me really enjoyed the snooping, and the amateur garden designer in me was left feeling like my garden looks pretty good after all! One might call that a win/win situation, if one used silly phrases like that.


  1. I love Lilyvilla. I saw it two years ago and it's still one of my favorite gardens. Looks like the tetrapanax(es) have really grown up since then. I remember she said the're very robust!

    Those tomato cages are beautifully sculptural. I want Mr. Mulchmaid to make some like them!

    As for the plastic plants: Somebody is a little odd.

    From what I've seen, your garden SHOULD be on the tour next year...or do you have to be a professional landscape designer to be part of it? Just tell 'em you are, then. We won't let on.

  2. Looks like a very fun garden.
    Love the Tetrapanex trees. I've killed one in my garden a couple of years ago and really should replant another - they are so wonderfully textural.
    And those tomato cages are just FABULOUS !
    Thanks for an enjoyable tour.

  3. I love the tomato cage. The structure looks very steady too. This garden is so beautiful. TQ for showing.

  4. I spent a lot of time looking at the Lilyvilla garden in the newspaper. What's interesting to me is that it doesn't really have a huge variety of plants, they use repetition pretty effectively. Since I mostly have one of everything, I feel like there's something to be learned here. I bet it's even better if you see it in August, since it has a lot of good stuff for late summer interest. I wonder if there's some way to get a peek then.
    Plastic agave-imitators? I was in such suspense waiting to see this new plant I was going to have to get.

  5. What a fun tour, thanks for showing more, including the poor trees and their injectibles (something that a landscaper recommended for our semi-sick cedar tree but then an arborist said to forget it and so far, so good, fingers crossed). Tomato cages of the gods, I would almost be willing to grow tomatoes if I had some of those! I wonder about the bear's breeches, if they are some special variety to have those pointy flower "hats." Plastic plants in Portland? The horror!

  6. I'm still chuckling over the plastic plants on a garden tour. That first garden does look great. Thanks for bringing us along.

  7. Jane, is Mr Mulchmaid up for making tomato cages like those? If so judging by others remarks I think you've got a market! Thank you for the kind words, yes the tour is just for gardens designed by ANLD members. It was just nice to come home and look around and not be disappointed, I was afraid I would feel that way!

    DD, what do you think was the cause of death? Yes plant another, or three...

    Stephanie, you are right, I don't think a strong wind would even phase them and they would last for years unlike the usual floppy cages.

    Megan you called it as far as the repetition, a lesson for me too, since I tend towards the "gotta have it" reaction to every new plant I see. I am impressed you could see that from the article in the paper. Did you know this garden is very near your home? I think a few walks past and chatting up the owner and you'll be in for a fall peek. Or put your mother on it...I imagine she'd get you in in no time. Just call me first ok? :)

    Karen, it actually hurt to look at those trees! Why the resistance to growing tomatoes? Maybe if Jane's Mr Mulchmaid comes through you can get a set of your own and be on the way to tasty tomatoes!

    Pam, just think of how nicely plastic flowers would withstand the Austin heat! You could start a trend....


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