Friday, April 9, 2010

Flowers on Friday ... Monticello's Tufton Farm

I mentioned yesterday that Robert and I spent last Saturday at the Center for Historic Plants at Tufton Farm with our friend Dennis (he's the manager there).  The weather was spectacular, though it was a little too chilly in the early morning for the open Jeep I was driving.

Dennis was giving a program on Old Garden Roses.  This is what greeted us as we entered the barn.

I see Perle d'Or, Duchesse de Brabant, Old Blush, Cramoisi Superieur ... I can't remember the others. 

Here's a close-up.

After Dennis finished with the inside part of the program, we went to see what he had in the greenhouse.

I fell in love with this citrus-scented geranium. 

The misting benches in the propagation area were full of seedlings and cuttings.  (The design of the benches themselves is something that I hope to use here in my own greenhouse.)

Most of this is destined for the Monticello garden center, and mail-order customers.

After the greenhouse, we moved outside to the garden for Dennis's pruning demonstration. 

I'm usually here in late spring or summer when the roses are blooming.  It was great to see all of the bulbs and early spring perennials.


Virginia Bluebell

For me, the star of the Tufton gardens is the Leonie Bell Noisette Garden.   It contains a wonderful collection of historic roses, mostly Noisettes, arranged in an enclosed octagon. 

If you are in the Charlottesville area, or can plan to be there, you can see all of this for yourself during Tufton's Open House on May 22.  Rev. Douglas Seidel will be giving a program on China Roses, which I guarantee you will not want to miss.  After the program, Doug and Dennis will do their 'Antique Rose Show', where they identify unknown old roses that people bring.  I have a couple of mystery roses of my own that I hope they can ID.

As lunchtime approached, it was time for Dennis to go home to work in his own garden, so Robert and I said our goodbyes and headed for the Jeep. 

By this time, the temperature was approaching 80 degrees, and the drive home was much better.  (with the top down, the sun shining, and things blooming on the roadsides).  It was a really, really wonderful day.

(written by Hartwood Roses.  Hartwood Roses blog)


  1. Monticello is a wonderful place! You had such a great gardening program there. Have you been to Poplar Grove? I was hoping for more gardens there, but they aren't restored.

  2. What a lovely place to visit..and I too am loving the citrus-scented geranium:) I referred a friend to your site, as she was talking about adding a few climbers to her yard. I also have an order to place soon.

  3. I haven't been to Monticello is soooo long, now I've got to go :->
    It sure is a beautiful spring here in Virginia!
    xo, suzy


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