Monday, June 16, 2014

The Alabama Nature Center at Historic Lanark












The Boys and I had a fun day out last weekend at the Alabama Nature Center located at historic Lanark in Millbrook, Alabama.  We attended Hydrangea Fest where we were taken on a guided tour of the gardens surrounding the lovely old antebellum house.  There is a formal garden, a potager, and literally miles of walking trails through the surrounding forest.  They have a huge collection of both French and native hydrangeas surrounding the ponds near the house and we learned all about how to grow them successfully, how to propagate them, and even how to dry the flowers for use in crafts and floral displays.

The boys enjoyed the cool, shady, wooded trails that wound along the banks of creeks and through swampy cypress bogs; while I preferred the landscaped gardens around the house.  I've really been bitten by the gardening bug this year, and it was great fun for me to gather ideas about plantings and designs to take back to our garden at home.

It's too hot now to do much of anything except watering, but as I'm watering,  I'm planning a perennial border here, a shade garden there, a cutting garden down near the meadow, a vegetable patch...............you know how it goes ;)

What's blooming in your garden?

8 comments:

Mary Ann said...

What a lovely house:) Everything is blooming in my garden...LOL We have had quite a bit of rain which is okay as it helps get everything established before the heat starts. I would love a hydrangea and I'm determined to get one this year. I have just the spot for it:)

barbara cecelia said...

I have noticed hydrangeas all over town. They are so bountiful. Here in the Northwest we seem to never lack masses of flowers blooming. You have quite a list going in your mind of what to do in your garden next. -- barbara

Valerie Gardiner said...

I love hydrangeas too and would love to have heard the talk on their cultivation. I live in a town famous for these wonderful plants and they are just beginning to come out in all their fabulous colours although my favourite is the blue. I hope you can find room for some in your garden Starr, they give a lot of pleasure for a long time.

margaret said...

what a lovely place to visit, enjoyed my stroll with you. I too love hydrangeas, have 3 in the garden and this year they are all going to be quite good at flowering.Last year they were poor. Where Mum used to live they had a climbing one right to the top of the block 5 stories high but the squirrels used to climb up and frighten the old ladies in the flats and were difficult to remove!so it was cut back to ground level, it did not stop the squirrels though so they have allowed it to regrow, a wonderful spectacle prior to cutting back, have not been there for 7 years since we lost Mum so not sure how it is growing.

Jules Woolford said...

How beautiful. Love the photos of the gardens, I'm sure that you got tons of ideas to progress your garden. Hope we get to see some :)

Margo Brooks said...

Wow! The hydrangeas are blooming down there! We have 4 in our yard, but they are still growing leaves. We had Lilly's pop out over the weekend though and clement is and maybe some type of flox. We are still discovering what is in the garden. I discovered poison ivy over Easter :(

Penny said...

Lovely! We have several nature centers in our area and try to visit them a couple of times each year. We are overwhelmed with growth this year, I swear the trees have added several feet to their height and the flowering plants have been blooming like crazy. Its a lovely time of the year.

Suztats said...

What a wonderful place! I'd like to transplant it to my back yard! There's so much blooming in my gardens. You'll have to come and see.......