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Garden Folly

New England Garden Ornaments: A proud sponsor of the 2011 Newport Flower Show

Saturday, June 25, 2011
This year, the Newport Flower Show recreated the stunning legendary "Blue Garden" on the front lawn of the Rosecliff mansion and we happily contributed many urns, planters and fountains to the gardens.
"Mrs. James' greatest triumph was her famed 'blue garden,' planned by John Greatorex on an elaborate scale.  Blue flowers, accented with white ones, were replaced two and three times during the summer to maintain the color.  This garden was also opened to the public every Fourth of July.  From stately stone colonnaded galleries at either end, one could gaze in awe down the long sweep of lawn broken symmetrically with beds of blue and white flowers.  The central lily pool and long shallow blue-tiled lake were joined by a narrow, blue-tiled aqueduct.  Two stone baskets filled with stone flowers rested on the edge of the pool.  Great bay trees, in ornamental stone pots, standing on blue-tile bases, space themselves in stately lines on either side down the garden.

At the south end the garden widened in a semicircle to the arbored gallery on whose stone terrace two white stone dovers perched on a scallop shell.  The whole garden plan was enclosed within tall cryptomeria trees and an intricate latticed fence upon which climbed white roses, blue clematis, and other appropriately colored vines.  The delicate shades of blue were captured in anchusa, ageratum, baptisia, canterbury bells, campanulas, low chinensis delphinium and the taller blue hybrids, heliotrope, hydrangeas, Siberian iris, lobelia, nepeta, pansies (Swiss blue), plumbago, and veronica.  White accents were masterfully obtained with the use of standard tree roses, madonna and auratum lilies, alyssum, and pond lilies.  Mrs. James had set her stage of perfection in gardening when, on a summer night in 1913, she rang up the curtain for its dedication."
The Blue Garden as described by Harriett Jackson Phelps in Newport in Flower.  Many contributed to the installation of these beautifully designed gardens including Hali Beckman and Laura Willson of Garden Endeavors.  Here are just a few pictures.