Welcome to my zone 9 garden. My roots are deeply planted in the sandy soil of sub-tropical central Florida, where the summers are long and hot, but the rest of the year is paradise!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Afternoon Tea



My Neighbor Nancy invited my daughter and I to an afternoon garden tea party last week. Altogether there were 6 of us.

Nancy has an unbelievably beautiful garden...so I new the 3 young girls that were coming would love walking barefoot along the many brick pathways that meander throughout her garden.




As tea parties go...there was a beautiful table set, colorful flowers and delectable cake, cupcakes and tea sandwiches that were enjoyed by all.
Don't you just love that unusual silver vase?




Breakfast tea and peach tea were served from pretty teapots.
 It was the perfect way to spend a late spring afternoon.

Now, how about a stroll through her garden.




I must warn you that the remainder of this post is going to be rather lengthy but when you get to the end I don't think you'll mind...in fact, I'm sure you'll be glad that I took so many photos of Nancy's garden. So, prepare to feast your eyes on a magical garden.

Take a look at that LARGE lotus begonia (left)...
It's a real beauty!
In the front yard the wave petunias are taking over the circle courtyard...

There are many pretty vistas in Nancy's garden...

What's that...oh, I hear your oohing and awing. It's beautiful isn't it?

And, lots of unusual bromeliads...

There's also whimsy in the garden...

And, a number of towering Australian tree ferns...
This one is at least 12 to 15 feet tall

And, there's a waterfall flowing down the hillside...
She made this waterfall herself...she's one talented woman isn't she?

There's lots of walkways...in fact, there's not one blade of grass in her large suburban lot...only mondo grass and lots of plants...

And, there's lots of rocks...each one put in place by Nancy herself...

Stone pathways...
Yep, made by Nancy...

Pebbled pathways...

Brick pathways and steps...
You got it...each brick layed by Nancy

Around every bend there's something else to see...

Nancy likes lions...they're all around her garden...
Fortunately, most of them are on the pottery.
See the lion faces at the base of the beautiful container.

Here's some more lions...





          
        Even some blue lions








And, another lion. This guy will truly keep the
 evil spirits out of her garden...
Notice the Nun's Orchid...it survived the freezes planted in the ground

And, sadly the tour must come to an end. I've only captured a portion of her garden...there's many more beautiful nooks and crannies. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed sharing it with you. It's definitely a magical place and is a testament to Nancy's creative imagination, love of gardening and lots and lots of hours in the garden!

This adorable parting gift was made and given to the 3 young girls by Nancy...
Isn't it sweet?

I hope that my daughter will never forget Nancy's garden, and that she'll be inspired to create a beautiful garden someday. I know I get lots of inspiration from Nancy's garden and always enjoy strolling through it to see what's in bloom.

Don't ya'll think Nancy needs a garden blog of her own?
 That way everyone can visit Nancy's garden whenever they want to!

17 comments:

sherryocala said...

By all means, WE need Nancy to do do a blog for sure. When you left her, I'm sure visions of gardening projects were dancing in your head. Thanks for sharing your tour with us. What a treat! And all those rocks and bricks and pebbles and stones! Wow! Tell her I loved her splendid garden.

africanaussie said...

Oh I love afternoon tea, and that looked really yummy. The teapot, the silver...mmm. Then the garden is amazing - so many different features, and yet it all sems to blend together. Yes I definitely think she needs a blog - tell her I will be her first follower!

Ami said...

Oh, MY! If only by looking the pictures, I would have thought these are some tropical garden pictures. It is amazing that Nancy did ALL of those, bricks, rocks, waterfalls, and of course all gorgeous plants. I can see she loves bromeliads, begonias, lilies! YES, she should have a blog, please tell her I will be a follower as soon as she creates one :)

I am sure your daughter will remember this tea party for a long long time. Like having a passionate gardener mom is not enough, now she has another one around her to inspire her with this gorgeous garden. I can see a future gardener is on horizon :)

Thanks for a great tour of Nancy's garden! I enjoyed it very much, and of course also inspired greatly.

Christy said...

My daughter so very much enjoyed her time there with you all! Beautiful photos - thanks for sharing :)

daisy said...

She most definitely needs a blog of her own! I want to know how she constructed all those stone pathways and I'd love to see before and after shots! What a lovely way to spend a spring day!

NanaK said...

Oh, I love Nancy's garden! Enjoyed getting to see ALL the pictures and wanted to see more. All those beautiful pathways and the stones in the gardens bring it all together so well. Lots of love and hard work throughout that garden. Her shady conditions seem similar in spots to my own and the ideas are popping in my head.

GreenPlanet said...

That's a beautiful tourage of your friend's garden. Truly, a beautiful tribute!! I appreciate the creativity, patience and dedication Nancy has and most importantly commend your appreciation of her hard work!!! Cheers to both of you!!!

FlowerLady said...

That was so sweetly beautiful! What a lovely afternoon for all. Nancy's gardens are awe inspiring, especially as she did so much of the work herself.

Thank you so much for the tour and the inspiration.

FlowerLady

ChrisC said...

Wow! What a garden! Nancy is my new hero! She most definitely needs her own blog,with DIY advice.

Meems said...

Speechless! Wow. My dream garden... just so many thoughts swirling in my head. First of all, the tea party is a lost art. I used to host them frequently but as time goes by they have gone by the wayside. Inspired by this!

Nancy is one remarkable woman. I was struck by all the rock before you mentioned it and then to find out she placed it all herself. *applause* Even with all the hills and levels in her garden. Wow.

So VERY lovely. Every turn and corner and vista so well placed and thought out and designed. Those are the kind of gardens you see in magazines. And hers should be displayed ... somewhere so more can enjoy.

Yes, would love her to have a blog. Thank YOU for sharing it, Susan. When I saw the first begonia I wondered if you gave her the first piece to get her started?

Okay... I'm going back for another visit... :-)
Meems

Floridagirl said...

Wow! Just phenomenal, Susan. What a gorgeous place! How long has she been at this garden? How big is her property? I could not imagine having such a botanical wonderland surrounding my house. Ahhh. She has done an amazing job with the hardscape, as well as with all the botanical wonders. You and your daughter are lucky to have been invited to that tea party. : ) BTW...I was glad to see those nun's orchids survived the freezes, as I have just added some to my garden.

Rainforest Gardener said...

BROMELIADS! Now that I got that out of the way, Nancy totally needs a garden blog. That garden is absolutely phenomenal and well planned to boot! Oh, and the tea party setup was adorable too.

Kimberly said...

Susan, I'm speechless, and that seriously doesn't happen very often. I'm in AWE of Nancy's garden and the amazing neighborhood you live in!! Good grief...this deserves many more views - too much to see in one sitting. And what a very gracious hostess!! I'm certain you enjoyed a lovely afternoon.

Susan said...

Nancy's property is very odd shaped...wider than deeper. Her house backs up to a lake that was an old phosphate pit 100+ years ago. That is why she has hills. When they removed the phosphate rock they piled up the remaining soil in different locations...thereby creating the mounds. Most people would not know how to landscape this particular piece of land. Nancy once told me that the landscape created itself once she started to work on it. It's really an incredible sight to see. She has been a true inspiration.

Hi Sherry...Everytime I visit Nancy's garden my head spins with ideas. I try hard to remember at least a couple of them.

Africanaussie...I definitely think she would have LOTS of followers. She's full of knowledge and suggestions,too.

Hi Ami...I've got to work on convincing her to start a blog. I'll even set it up for her. Glad you enjoyed it.

Hey Christy...It's definitely a magical place for kids. I'm glad Emma could join us.

Hi Daisy...I believe she's been working on it for 14 plus years. It would be neat to see some before shots.

Hi Kay...Unfortunately, my pics can not even begin to do justice to the overall picture of her garden. It's incredible to see it in person.

Hi Green Planet...Glad you enjoyed it. It's definitely worth sharing.

Hi Flowerlady...I'm glad you enjoyed the brief tour. Lots of inspiration around every corner.

Hi Chris...I totally agree with you. She definitely would have lots of advice to share.

Hi Meems...The tea party was fun. I love all the pretty china, silver and yummy goodies to eat. And, as far as the lotus begonia goes...Nancy gave me a piece of hers. So the plant I gave you is an offspring from her plant. We gardeners are becoming connected via our passalong plants. She's given me many unusual plants and broms over the years. Her house is located off the main road, so unfortunately not many people get to see her beautiful creation.

Hi FloridaGirl...I think she told me she been gardening there for around 14 years...it could be longer now. She actually started before the house was built. I'm going to split my Nun's orchid and plant one of them in the garden. We'll both keep our fingers crossed next winter.

Hey Steve...I didn't even get pics of the most unusual broms in her garden. She's got some real beauties and lots of them.

Nanette O'Hara said...

A tea party--what fun! And in such a delightful place. Nancy's garden is an inspiration. No grass -- you know I love that!

Dani said...

WOW!!!!!!!

Laura R. said...

I am in total AWE! She should charge admission and give garden tours and talks! You mentioned your post may be too long..I was wanting more. Sure hope she starts a blog..what an inspiration..would love to know what she amends her soil with, fertilizes with...everything!
Thank you Susan for sharing your special day with all of us!

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