One element I see in many older gardens is the concept of “massing” large numbers of a particular plant in one area. This is true of any garden, of course. Planting one or two specimens leaves them looking a bit forlorn, but planting 10, 20 or 30 of them gives them and edgy and a power and makes them a focal point of your garden.
Of course, people like the owners of Willowmere probably had quite a substantial gardening staff that did all the work of planting and maintaining the garden for the enjoyment of the owners. It can be more difficult to manage massing when you only have your own two hands and a limited budget. Propagating your own plants can help, though, by producing more of what you already have and allowing your eventually fill out beds to whatever level of massing you wish.
On another note, I do love the combination of purple and gold. I often use it in my own garden, where and when I can.
“Willowmere,” Rear Admiral Aaron Ward house, 435 Bryant Avenue, Roslyn Harbor, New York (LOC)
Johnston, Frances Benjamin,, 1864-1952,, photographer.
“Willowmere,” Rear Admiral Aaron Ward house, 435 Bryant Avenue, Roslyn Harbor, New York Iris beds]
1 photograph : glass lantern slide, hand-colored ; 3.25 x 4 in.
Site History. House Architecture: Circa 1770 house, inherited in 1882 by Elizabeth Cairns Ward, expanded to a Colonial Revival house late 19th, early 20th century. Landscape: Rear Admiral Aaron Ward. Associated Name: Elizabeth Cairns (Mrs. Aaron) Ward. Other: Known as Pearsall House.Today: House but not garden extant.
On slide (handwritten): “W” and “Ward.” Also, red stroke mark and blue star sticker.
Photographed when Frances Benjamin Johnston and Mattie Edwards Hewitt worked together.
Title, date, and subject information provided by Sam Watters, 2011.
Forms part of: Garden and historic house lecture series in the Frances Benjamin Johnston Collection (Library of Congress).
Rights Info: No known restrictions on publication.
Repository: Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division, Washington, D.C. 20540 USA,hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/pp.print
Higher resolution image is available (Persistent URL): hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/ppmsca.16886
Call Number: LC-J717-X109- 81
Previously in Garden History:
- “The Appletrees,” Henry Eugene Coe house, Southampton, New York
- Thornewood, Tacoma, Washington
- Mrs. Francis Lemoine Loring house, 700 South San Rafael Avenue, San Rafael Heights, Pasadena, California. (LOC)
- Tatham Garden
- ‘Santa Barbara Mission, 2201 Laguna Street, Santa Barbara, California. (LOC)
- Your victory garden counts more than ever!
- “Villa Sciarra,” George Wurts house, via Calandrelli, Rome, Italy. (LOC)
- Whitworth Gardens, Darley Dale, Derbyshire, England
- John & Lizzie Wilson from Boston in Bradenton, Florida, 1951
- Paris Exposition: gardens, Paris, France, 1900
- Wisteria blooms in Davis Garden (Locust Valley, New York), 1930
- “Killenworth,” George Dupont Pratt house, Glen Cove, New York, ca. 1918
- A Garden Under Glass, Nice, France, c1865-1895