An event to get to, Noel Kingsbury speaking at Chanticleer, so I arrived late afternoon of October 24 to see the garden in approaching twilight. I usually feel the need to make the trek around the entire garden, but time being short, I chose just to see what I wanted and let it go at that.
Tea Cup Garden
I started with the Tea Cup Garden behind the smaller of the two former residences on the estate. It’s taken on an increasingly tropical look over the past few years, and at the entrance court was this fruit-laden pomegranate.
The bananas in the main courtyard were especially effective breaking up the late afternoon light. Plantings in the Tea Cup Garden change dramatically year to year.
The fountain is one of the few unchanging features.
Rounding the corner you come to this scene of a golden afternoon, looking out over the Tennis Count Garden, signaled by the tall plumes of Arundo donax in the middle distance.
By this time of year, the Tennis Court Garden has gone over, so I’m showing only its edges. This is Lindera salicifolia, which until recently I thought was Lindera glauca ‘Angustifolia’, of which I just bought five for my garden. I anticipate my L. Angustifolia will give me equal color once they settle in. This is an extraordinary shrub for its color and graceful, loose form.
Here Amsonia hubrictii and ground covers.
An interesting shade ground cover down in the Tennis Court Garden. Chanticleer’s on line plant list identifies it as Tinantia pringlei. I don’t know the plant but assume it’s perennial since I’ve seen it in past years.
Chanticleer House and Terraces
The entrance to the main house, with roosters on columns at the front court entry.
The gravel in the circular entry is always meticulously raked into waves and concentric circles.
The exotically planted walk around to the main courtyard at the back of the house …
… which takes you by this view over the Great Lawn below.
The terrace …
… also lavishly planted with tender plants.
An amazing golden form of Ficus lyrata decorates (yes, decorates!) the walk along the croquet lawn.
This paved square in the lawn changes every year (change being a constant at Chanticleer) … and for some reason always makes me think of a chess board and Alice in Wonderland.
One of Dan Benarcik’s show-off plantings near the pool.
This plant with the huge leaves is Tetrapanax papyrifer ‘Steroidal Giant’, a large form of Japanese rice paper plant. I’ve planted one in my small Brooklyn garden. If it survives, I think I may need to make some major readjustments in years to come.
Going down a narrow exit stairway, you encounter this humorous Marcia Donahue ceramic sculpture of bamboo with rooster’s combs, then descend a long path to the Great Lawn and the Serpentine.
Serpentine refers to the serpentine shape of the planting. It’s always some agricultural crop and this one is my favorite. A repeat planting from three or four years ago. If I had my druthers, I’d ask for this every year. It’s extraordinary paired with the Little Bluestem.
You may think I have too many photos of this planting. I don’t.
And across the Great Lawn, Muhlenbergia capillaris in full autumn bloom.
The Pond Garden
Moving on to the Pond Garden, the spires of Rudbeckia maxima in seed …
… in the distance the billowy white of a plant I remember from my childhood. It grew profusely in the wetlands of Bear Creek, just south of my home town in Mississippi. I saw it in bloom every autumn, but no one could tell me its name.
Only 50 years later did I learn what it was, on A Tidewater Gardener, the blog of a fellow gardener–Baccharis halimifolia.
Dry Garden and Ruin Garden
Running out of time, I headed up the hill via the Dry Garden to the Ruin Garden.
The Ruin has never looked so well to me as in this late light, with the brilliant autumn hues and hazy sunlight casting the interior stone walls into blue shade.