Three for Thursday: October 8, 2009

On Sunday, September 27th, I was one of the lucky garden writers who stayed over to tour various private gardens in the Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina. As it turned out, we were luckier in more than just the gardening department. I suggest you read this account by Southern Living's Steve Bender of how the other tour group, who intended to tour sustainable gardens, spent their day. Then mosey back over here to my corner of Katy and take a look at Helen Yoest's garden, as seen through my camera lens.

While our visit did include some unexpected drama, discourtesy of an irascible neighbor's hissy fit, nothing could have upstaged the beauty and delight we found in Helen's gardens. I felt very much in my element there from the moment the bus pulled up in front of her home. Like me, Helen is surrounded by fairly conventional landscapes in what seemed to be, like mine, a fairly staid suburban community. Helen's garden is unconventional, but delightfully so: exuberant and expressive, playful and imaginative, and I only wish I'd had more time to savor it and taken more pictures to share.

The front garden, where castor beans and conifers comingle

A feast for the senses of all its visitors: birds, butterflies & garden writers all find
much to enjoy in this bountiful border on the lower terrace in back.

There are also vignettes of serenity and simplicity scattered
about the gardens.

Many thanks to Helen for her gracious Southern hospitality and to all the GWA folks in North Carolina who worked so hard to make our time there such a pleasure!


Pam/Digging said…
I'm glad you weren't on Steve's bus, Cindy. I'd already read his account of the unhappy bus incident. Seeing Helen's garden must have been wonderful.
Unknown said…
Lovely gardens! Don't you just love seeing what other people do with their gardens.So many good ideas to remember
Gail said…
They had quite an adventure! You had a great tour. I've heard her garden is wonderful and you've shown that to be true! The fire ant description was almost funny. gail
Hey Cindy, Thank you for the nice tour post of my garden, Helen's Haven.It means a lot to me to have visitors like you; ones who can understand what I'm trying to build - you "got" the garden.

I hope my neighbors didn't dampen your spirit to much. They do that to other nice people on the block as well. It's really sad. But as my husband says,that's the worse can do. In the scheme of things, it could be worse.

Good to meet you. H
P.S. I added you my Gardening With Confidence blog roll.
What a lovely, contemplative garden! I wish I could have seen it. Poor Helen, how embarrassing to have rude neighbors. I know when we gardeners all get together we get rather excited and all talk at once, but it wasn't like you had a live band there, or anything.
Kathy said…
I loved Helen's garden, too, because it was clearly a garden designed for people to live in and be a part of. Though very beautiful, its primary function is not to show off, but to give pleasure to those who live there.
tina said…
Her garden is most wonderful and it is always a pleasure seeing it. You did a great job posting on it too. I enjoy seeing gardens thru other's eyes as it is always nice to get a new perspective. Fantastic shots of it too.