Thursday, May 21, 2009

Southern Living

Early April in Wilmington, N.C. means one thing. The N.C. Azalea Festival. There are many activities including concerts, parades, art shows and we even a Queen. But one of the highlights for me is the garden tour. Today I want to show you a few pictures from two of the gardens..

Do you remember the post I did on Sharon Swartzlander, art teacher from Forest Hills Global Elementary? If not you can see it here. Well our teachers are a talented bunch. Take a look at the garden of Karen Strawn, another teacher from our little school!

What a welcome.
The garden had a pink theme that Karen carried throughout.

Don't you wish your window boxes looked like this?

The garden even has a fountain. I know my kids would end up in there. May not be a bad idea for some summer fun.

I need a deck like this.

Karen really paid attention to the details. Love the finial leading up the deck stairs.

One last surprise on the way out...a pot lady. This garden was full of charm and so much fun to walk through. More impressive? She did it all herself. You know being a teacher she has the summer off..I wonder if she would like to spend it in my yard....?

The next stop on our tour is the home of my good friends Betsy von Biberstein and Frank Hobart. They live just down the alley from us, but it is light years away in design. I bet they want to spit when they drive by my yard. Of course, being friends, they are too kind to say anything. Thank you Betsy and Frank.

This is the gateway to their parking area.
I would love to have something like this in my backyard to give us some privacy while still looking charming.

I love this picture of the Parterre Garden. Parterre Garden: A formal garden of planting beds or tightly clipped hedging and gravel paths to form a symmetrical pattern. Yes, I had to look that up. It reminds me of a tiny Versailles.

Have you ever? Isn't this a fabulous water feature? And yes, they have children, two boys, and I swear their yard/garden is always perfect. It is a joy to spend time there. I don't have a good picture, but they also have an outdoor fireplace where they can relax and visit. If you don't have a nice yard, it's good to have friends who do.

Every year a number of girls are picked to be Azalea Belles to visit with people as they tour the garden and to represent the festival. It is a big deal these days and quite an honor. I too was an Azalea Belle, many, many years ago. This year our cousin Roxanna was a Belle. The two shorter ones are mine, Peanut and Doodle.

More Belles with Butterball..spit out that passy for heaven's sake!

The Hobart boys, in the white and blue hats, were smart enough to set up a lemonade stand. Not only lemonade, but homemade cookies too. Peanut, Doodle and Butterball were helping out. It's good to get them working early.

This year's festival was a big success. Want to join us next year?


  1. Looks like so much fun! And the gardens are beautiful.

  2. The yards are gorgeous! Wish I knew how to do that...please post a photo of yourself as an Azalea Belle-laughing is good for your abs :)

  3. Love the juxtaposition of formal and eclectic. Those gardens looked fun! Thanks for sharing! Butterball is adorable - passy and all!

  4. I just love this idea. So very southern:) That fountain pool is stunning.


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