Garden Diary - July 2015

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Mill Fleur, Garden of Barbara Tiffany
Wednesday, 22 July 2015

The Tohickon Garden Club is having an outing today, a visit to Mill Fleur, the garden of Barbara and Robert Tiffany. Open for bus tours and visitors by appointment, Barbara personally conducts visitors through a landscape where she clearly knows each plant.The multi- acre garden switchbacks down the steep banks of the Tohickon Creek through a woodland garden filled with perennials, bulbs, shrubs and trees whose flowers and foliage are grouped by color. Its a perfect day, sunny and warm with pleasant breezes, ideal for a garden outing.

We gather round for some introductory remarks before stepping forth on the garden path.

There are rock outcrops, natural and amended that form a backdrop to parts of the garden.

Tree roots become entwined with the rocks,
sinuously finding a crevice wherein to enter.

Where there aren't rocks, they are imported and built into elegant walls.

As you might expect with all the crevices there are voles and chipmunks eager to make their homes. (The garden is fenced against deer, with cattle guards at driveway crossings.) Here is one of the two members of the vole patrol. Working staff, they spend the nights in the mill. 'Scuse me, work to do.


Barbara Tiffany, explaining some details of her garden.

These small hollows under the gnarly roots of a big old tree - too small
for a hobbit hole but ideal for a fairy house or gnome home, don't you agree?

A sinuous bench sheltering under the branches of a weeping katsura.

The clever design has the progression of wooden shapes threaded on rods, each adjacent piece separated from the next by groups of washers. Assembly must be interesting.

A raised bed, formed with another use of rocks.

The weeping katsura, Cercidiphyllum japonicum, from the other side and outside (the bench is inside.) A lovely harmony of cascading branches and dainty, silvery water jets.

An interesting variant of Pachysandra terminalis, the ubiquitous groundcover of office parks and commercial buildings. This one appeared in Barbara's garden. She sent some to Tony Avent at Plant Delights Nursery in North Carolina, where it is now offered for sale.

A lovely outing to a fascinating garden.

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