BUS TRIP! Hudson River Ramble
The Friends of The Frelinghuysen Arboretum and DIG IT! Magazine are teaming up to bring you another exceptional garden tour.
Leave the driving to us! as you enjoy going on a “Hudson River Ramble” of gardens, history, women of the land and lunch in a historic village. The itinerary includes one of the last great estates on the Hudson, lunch in the 1700s village of Rhinebeck and a legendary college with historical garden.
Blithewood Garden at Bard College
Blithewood Garden is a formal Italianate walled garden on the banks of the Hudson River. Created circa 1830 by Andrew Jackson Downing, renowned landscape architect, the garden has since undergone several owners and renovations. Located on the western side of the Beaux-Arts Levy Institute, the garden offers statuary, unusual plantings and magnificent views of the Hudson and Catskill Mountains.
Robert Donaldson, Blithewood’s owner in the mid-1800s, built the mansion and grounds in concert with architect Alexander Jackson Davis and landscape architect Andrew Jackson Downing. (Amazing name similarities) Ownership changed to the Zabriskie family, when the formal terrace gardens were created that still exist. Some original plants remain.
Enjoy a 1-hour tour with gardener Bessina Harrar or wander on your own. Bessina has been gardener here for over 20 years. Her intimate relationship and knowledge of the garden, its history and botany is the basis of her book, Blithewood, a History of Place It will be for sale at the garden.
Lunch in Rhinebeck
Lunch in Rhinebeck is not to be missed! From the corner of Market and Montgomery Streets, there are bistros organic and European galore, historic taverns, a Mediterranean trattoria, regional-sustainable restaurants, patisserie and pizza parlors all within two blocks in any direction. They represent a variety of cuisines and prices for you to choose from.
Montgomery Place was the home of several generations of the Livingston family, most notably four women who brought agriculture, horticulture and conservation to the fore in the Hudson Valley. Their men were generally away, involved with politics and finances.
In 1802, Janet Montgomery first developed orchards and a commercial fruit tree/seed/berry nursery, a greenhouse for tropical plants and a black locust allee. In the mid-1800s, during the time of the Hudson River School movement, her daughter Louise and husband Edward Livingston (and their daughter and son-in-law, Cora and Thomas Barton) transformed the property to reflect the romantic aesthetic. Louise added a gothic conservatory, walking paths, follies, ornamental gardens designed by Andrew Jackson Downing and partnered on a conservation covenant with her neighbor, Robert Donaldson, regarding non-industrial use of a shared stream. Thomas Barton created an arboretum, still standing.
The grounds were built upon for pleasure with fabulous views of the Hudson River, Catskill Mountains, gardens and ancient allee. Louise and Cora remodeled the mansion. Alexander Davis designed both the mansion and Bard’s Levy Institute.
In the 1920s, Violetta White and John Ross Delafield, a Livingston descendent. Violetta was a botanist and published mycologist who created several tucked away gardens, some still remaining.
We will enjoy a guided tour of this grand mansion’s first floor and grounds and gardens. Then we’ll take a short ride to Montgomery Place Orchard’s farm stand, established by Violetta Delafield. There, over 60 varieties of apples, some antique, and delectable goodies (goat cheese, dairy, honey, fruits, vegetables) from local farms will be available for purchase.
Come visit the places that were the inspiration for an entire art movement. Leave the driving to us and don't miss the bus. Do the Hudson River Ramble!
To Register: www.arboretumfriends.org/Events
Wednesday September, 19, 2012 • Bus leaves at 8:45am SHARP and returns about 6pm •
$60/Friends members, $65/non-members
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published July 26, 2012