|Planting Fields Arboretum Late August|
I recently experienced some of the most beautiful gardens I have ever seen. The Planting Fields is a 409-acre public arboretum and historic site that is one of the few remaining famous Gold Coast estates located on the north shore of Long Island. Located in the town of Oyster Bay, the estate including a mansion and meticulously kept grounds, was the former home of William Robertson Coe and his wife Mary (Mai) Huttleston Coe in 1913. Planting Fields retains its original historic buildings and landscapes and can be visited year round.
|Coe Hall Planting Fields|
|Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar Living Arbor|
Beautiful mature evergreens such as this single Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar are the pride of the property. Four trees were trained to form an arbor leading to one of the greenhouses on the estate.
A walk to the Dahlia garden on the other side of the estate proved to be quite rewarding. Dahlias of almost every variety imaginable grace this plot and are in full bloom at summer's end. There were so many that it was difficult to choose a select few to show here. Their beauty is indescribable. William Coe had admired Dahlias because of their variety of texture and bold colors. The present day garden constructed in 1998 is maintained by the Mid Island Dahlia Society and is one of the largest and most spectacular dahlia gardens in the northeast. I am thrilled that it is here on Long Island. Over 400 varieties of dahlia are tended to and Dahlia Society members donate over 2000 hours a year maintaining the gardens.
This is the main greenhouse on the premises housing tropical plants such as hibiscus, orchards, ferns, bromeliads, Bird of Paradise, Banana trees and succulents nestled in a tropical gardener's paradise.
|The 'Italian Garden'|
This is one of the reflecting pools on the estate known as the Italian Garden. Mai Rogers Coe originally created the site back in 1913 as one of her favorite places to stroll. There are over 40 varieties of perennials that bloom sequentially throughout the year to produce a vibrant display of color.
This is the Camellia Greenhouse constructed in 1917 that houses the largest collection of camellias in the northeast with over 300 plants on display. In the center of the greenhouse is a beautiful reflecting pool and fountain and in the backdrop is a miniature grotto.
This was certainly a special day for an overly exuberant gardener. It turns out that while on our August Sunday drive we ended up here at the arboretum on a whim and it became a day to remember. I did not have my camera so being a very determined gardener I used my cell phone to take these photographs. I will be sure to visit Planting Fields again next summer and will bring the good camera so that I can engage in some better photography. If you are ever on Long Island and would like to see these magnificent gardens you will not be disappointed. They are a welcome sight for the gardening enthusiast or for anyone who appreciates the beauty of nature along with a little bit of local history!
As Always...Happy Gardening!
Author:Lee@ A Guide To Northeastern Gardening Copyright 2011. All Rights Reserved