This Saturday, July 14, is the annual Secret Garden Walk of Kenosha’s Four Seasons Garden Club. If you are within driving distance of Kenosha, I strongly recommend attending this event. Garden walks are an excellent source of inspiration, as well as an opportunity to discover unfamiliar plants and see them used in their natural settings.
I attended last year’s walk, which featured six private gardens–three in-town and three suburban. If you live too far away to enjoy this excellent garden walk, here’s a sampling from 2011. Due to the number of photographs, the city gardens will be featured in Part 1 and the rural gardens in Part 2. If you click on any one of the photos, the other photos in that gallery will become available in slideshow sequence. To leave the gallery, just click once more in a blank space.
City Garden 1
An unexpected bonus here was that the house itself is on the National Register of Historic Places. Built in 1923, the prairie-style house was designed by Russell Barr Williamson, who began his career working with Frank Lloyd Wright. Large old trees provide cover for a soothing shade garden and an outdoor model railroad. All hard surfaces are effectively softened with plantings, including the attractive screening and built-in planters at the rear garden entrance.
City Garden 2
A small city garden bursting with color, set against an attractive blue clapboard home. Beautifully designed pots and hanging baskets turn the patio into its own separate garden. The main feature, however, is a Japanese style pond and garden, complete with koi and stunning architectural sun shade.
City Garden 3
A pleasant but modest home with a million dollar view of Lake Michigan and garden islands filled with Monet colors. Skillfully executed contrasting plant and leaf shapes abound in the mixed borders. Notice the effective use of opposites on the color wheel, toned down by shrubs and dwarf evergreens. Along the fence, soothing single color plantings are varied by changes in hues. The owner regularly improves the soil each fall–a key to growing those magnificent delphiniums.