JJ, and we were comparing notes on our Agave collections, she was adamant that I must visit the Ruth Bancroft Garden. So isn’t it fitting that when I finally did it was with her? This is the scene visible from the street…
All of these beauties are growing outside the garden! Talk about great advertising…(you’ll have to forgive me for not getting many names on this tour, I let myself just be carried away by the splendor and didn’t get all documentary)
Aloe broomii, about to bloom…
And we enter the garden…
Ruth Bancroft Garden is approximately 3 ½ acres, planted on a former walnut orchard. In 1972 the beds and paths were laid out by garden designer Lester Hawkins, but the plantings were all arranged and done by Mrs. Bancroft. She had been growing potted succulents in greenhouses surrounding her nearby home and finally, with the phasing out of the orchard, she was able to get her specimens in the ground.
Back then the garden was private, however upon visiting the garden in 1989, and discussing the lack of preservation plans with Mrs. Bancroft, Frank Cabot was inspired to form The Garden Conservancy (a national organization founded by Mr. Cabot to preserve America’s exceptional gardens), this garden was its first project.
Ruth Bancroft is now 104 years old, I heard she made an appearance at the last plant sale.
On the right is Hesperoyucca whipplei var. eremica, on the left Manfreda 'Macho Mocha.’
Manfreda undulata 'Chocolate Chips' I believe...
And it's wavy pup...
Bloomed out dead mother, and pup.
Look at the label...do you suppose that means this Yucca was planted from seed in 1968?
This Agave obviously believes in sending its pups out, far away from home.
These plants were all under cover but it was large enough that you could walk through.
Here's a close up...
we visited the Berkeley Botanical Garden in 2009. This is only the second one I've seen.
And that concludes our visit to the Ruth Bancroft Garden, I'm so glad I finally got to visit! Thanks JJ for making it possible.