Sunday, June 2, 2013

2013 American Peony Society Winterthur Garden Tour


The gardens at Winterthur were a great contrast to the gardens at Longwood. The naturalistic feel and giant old trees of Winterthur gave it a more historic feel versus the more modern displays of colorand neatly trimmed beds of Longwood. Winterthur's house was filled with antiques and period architectures from the 1600's, 1700's, and 1800's. Winterthur boasts a collection of over 90,000 objects of American art and antiques.
Winterthur's Interior

The weather was a bit cooler, and the breeze was awesome. The difference between the garden styles was evident not only by the form and feel of the planting, but also by the number of caretakers. Winterthur operates with a team of 9 versus a team of several hundereds of gardeners and volunteers at Longwood. Winterthur also had a much larger peony collection than Longwood. Longwood's peony collection was mostly tree peonies with a couple herbaceous peonies mixed in their perennial border.

Winterthur Peony Garden

Winterthur actually has two large dedicated peonies collections. One is a partly shaded collection of herbaceous and tree peonies accompanied by a gazebo, which was made to showcase A.P. Saunders hybridizing efforts. This garden had mostly finished blooming since tree peonies are generally earlier than herbaceous, and most of A.P. Saunders herbaceous hybrids are early blooming varieties. The other peony garden is a larger, more formal, mostly herbaceous peony garden with a round center, stone pathways and staircases, and a garden bench. The peonies in this garden were still in full bloom. The season was nearing it's end, but there were still lots of lovely blossoms!

Winterthur Peony Garden

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