Nature inspires creativity
The author’s husband, Per, takes great pleasure in creating ornament out of rocks. They are natural to the property and so artfully placed and arranged, they seem almost to come alive.
First we cleared our sloping landscape of its old fallen fruit trees, poison ivy, and multiflora roses. Rocks dominated the land, with many large outcroppings as well as mounds of smaller ones cast by farmers into the bordering hedgerow. The art of rock rearranging soon became an obsession with my husband, Per. Using winches and come-alongs, he moved boulders into artistic groupings, and rearranged them as terracing retainers and as low walls weaving through the landscape. He used rocks to depict stories, and even levitated some into the arms of a pollarded cherry. Along with rock works, Per created five ponds: two terrace pools behind our house, a double pond nestled among large boulders on the hillside, a pool at the edge of a knot garden, and finally a large woodland pond anchored by a gazebo. And with water to play with, we brought statuary into the garden in the form of fountains. Frogs naturally populated our water gardens, and eventually they became a recurrent theme for ornament throughout the garden.
The garden has been developing and growing for more than 15 years. A series of island plantings and gardens, each individual unto themselves yet integrated into the overall design, forms the basis of the landscape. The garden is an informal one: no straight lines, no formal hedges, save the knot garden. It is filled with both woody and herbaceous plants. I am a plant lover and a collector of all green things that are rare and unusual. I design with color, texture, form, and contrast in mind. As I developed each specific area of the garden, I introduced a touch of whimsy by adding unusual ornaments. I create the gardens to make people smile.