Sunday, September 6, 2009

Country Places

The manifesto of the often provocative garden blog states in part, "In love with real, rambling, chaotic, dirty, bug-ridden gardens". A dinner invitation was extended to me because one of the invited guests, a friend of mine, knew I would want to see this garden. She was right.

The tone was set for what I was about to see by the prayer flags lining the top of the simple metal farm gate at the entrance to the house and gardens after the mile long drive through the woods on a one lane gravel road. It was as if I had driven into the jungles of Haiku or the remote elevations of Olinda on Maui. I was about to see a private garden sanctuary.

Was it chaotic? You certainly would not see a garden like this behind a fancy electric community association gate. I thought it had a great sense of order and flow, but then I live in the wilderness. It was exuberant.

Was it bug-ridden? I hope so, but then I live in the bug-ridden wilderness and would not notice such things. At dusk there were plenty bats. They like bugs.

The garden rambled on for about two acres around the house and included a large vegetable garden and pond. This was surrounded by pasture, stables for a horse and orchards. The open grounds receded into the undulating edges of the wild forest off in the distance. It was decidedly real and obviously a much loved garden.

An existing one story old farmhouse was greatly expanded. The use of original issue salvaged materials kept the feel of the previous home and a time gone by. I tend not to take pictures of people's houses to much in respect of some privacy. This is not however a place you will ever see from the side of the road. It is tucked well into the woods in its own private valley.

In so many ways you can not avoid the two hundred years of history of European settlement in the mountains of North Carolina. So much remains of the rural agricultural past.

Even more has vanished. The land always remains.

Another resident gardener currently reaps the bounty of an intimate connection to the land.

I did not ask, but I wonder if all these objects were found on site.

To be contemplated.

Now if I did not already have my own piece of the 'aina, I could be coveting a spot like this nestled in the forest in its own private valley with a stream running through it and a history that permeates the place.

The creator of this garden sanctuary would be the person to ask if you were looking for such a Country Place. She knows this territory well.


Lola said...

A very lovely place. It's really a gardeners paradise. I'm sure you were in heaven seeing so much beauty.
So glad you enjoyed your visit.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

OMG, what inspiration here. What a stroke of luck being invited here as you carve out your own little Eden on the mountain. I can almost feel the comfort of this much loved and cultivated acerage. Those rock walls are to die for. I bet you are right in thinking that the collection of rusty artifacts came from the site. Those farm implements on the barn sure give the feeling that a lot of hard work was done here too. I really enjoyed this tour.

Jan said...

What a wonderful garden which seems so peaceful and fits right into its surroundings. It reminds me so much of my grandparents' place. Thanks for sharing this; I enjoyed the visit.

Always Growing

Anonymous said...

WOW. That's all I have to say.


ryan said...

Wonderful garden. A very strong sense of place.

Frances said...

Oh Christopher, I think the provocative garden bloggers would love this spot, as we all do! Those rock walls are quite eye catching. Did you discuss them? I did click on the country place and appreciate one who really must know the territory well. What a great resource for you both, fellow gardeners.

Siria said...

Hi Christopher! Thank you for sharing in your wonderful visit of this unique and special Country Place! I too clicked on the website and enjoyed learning about the creator of this special sanctuary. All those rock walls and steps are beautiful! It sure is amazing the places you find tucked away in those beautiful mountains! But it's the people behind them that make them special.

Christopher C. NC said...

Lola it was indeed a lovely place and the drive there took me down roads I had not traveled.

Lisa a lot of hard work over the many long years was evident at this place. What was also evident is when the work becomes a joy.

Hi Jan. Keeping the feel of the former inhabitants did indeed take the mind back to a place where our grandparents could have been born.

Bev, it was wow enough for me to already be thinking about visiting again.

Hi Ryan. You could feel the history of this land for sure.

Frances the rock walls were nice, such flat rocks everyone has but me. Even better and I did not take a good enough picture was the huge smooth boulder outcropping that was behind the house that was incorporated into the garden and deck space.

Siria I did not get to spend enough time with Kathy, our hostess and tried to link directly to her bio page at Country Places Realty, but the link went to the home page.

Pam/Digging said...

Lucky you to be able to visit a beautiful gardener's garden. Those are the best kind.

Ben said...

Wow nice place! what is the plant in the image at ?

Christopher C. NC said...

Pam, hopefully there will be more gardens like this to visit in my future.

Hi Ben. That is Amaranthus cruentus, Purple Amaranth. She told me she only grew it for ornament and did not harvest the grain.

countryplaces said...

Hi Christopher, I really enjoyed seeing the pictures of my place on your site. I was blown away by the comments too! And what good pictures you took; very thoughtful! "atifact rock" is indeed covered with items found very close to that spot. It was the site of the chimney when the place was a two story log home. Well, Deb says you have to ok this for us to talk so I'll sign off now. K

Vicki Lane said...

You did a great job capturing this garden. I've watched this homestead grow into beauty over the years and am in awe of what the owners have accomplished.

Les said...

Thanks for sharing this garden. It looks like it is really tied to its place in the land. I really like how the deck just turns into rock and garden.

Christopher C. NC said...

Hi Kathy. I am so glad you stopped by to have a look at your garden through a different set of eyes. It was a pleasure to meet you and to dine with such an interesting group of people. And of course I loved your garden. The whole setting was the place of dreams, at least for some people. I'm not sure what Deb was referring to unless she thought I did comment moderation and had to approve comments before they are posted. The world of garden bloggers is probably the most civil on the web, so I don't moderate. Occasionally I have to delete some spam, but even that is rare.

Hi Vicki. It is indeed a special place. Lucky you to have been able to watch it over time. Very nice blog you have yourself. I added you to my favorites so I can visit regular and will put you in the blogs of WNC link list if you like.

Les I totally noticed how the deck just blended into to these mammoth boulders of the rock outcropping. The first landing of the steps to the back door was a smooth boulder about 10' x 10'.

Vicki Lane said...

Thanks, Christopher, do please add me to your WNC blogs!

Miss_Yves said...

A wonderful garden !