Well, this is our local 2007 garden tour. It was called "Garden Exploration," but I called it "Garden Exploitation." For the last several years the annual tour was sponsored by a local garden club whose members put their hearts and souls into it. One of their purposes used to be to inspire the "ordinary" gardener by demonstrating what could be done by individual homeowners. NOT so this one. This year it was sponsored by The Colorado Federation of Garden Clubs and the American Society of Landscape Architects. Yes, the landscapes and gardens were spectacular and showy. Of course they were, because they were professionally designed and maintained. I really didn't need to be reminded of what my garden and home limits are, but I did enjoy drooling for a while. Here's what I don't understand: Where do all these people work and how do all these people have soooo much money? This town doesn't seem big enough to hold that many millionaires and mansions. It was area, after area, after area of large estates and homes. I missed the friendly feeling of the previous tours. Oh... and you had to be a billy goat in order to traverse most of the terrain. With only one exception they were all hanging on the edge of a hill. Each one trying to be taller than the other. Anyway, here are some photos of a few of the landscapes. Don your oxygen masks and come along.
I loved her theme of cobalt blue in so many of the "rooms." She even had a cobalt blue hose and sprinkler head!! Talk about hose envy!
By far, this was the most delightful, cheerful and "lived in" landscape. The owner greeted us, and her enthusiasm and love of her gardens was very much in evidence. I could have stayed here forever and savored every nook and cranny. It was great to see a garden with so much of the owner's input and personality.
My Second Favorite
Beautiful stonework, paths, fountains, water falls, what more could you ask for? Except the $$ to own something like this. My favorite feature here was the wonderful use of Pikes Peak Purple Penstemon used throughout the landscape. I thought this gave a nice continuity to the gardens.
Finally... a level site to rest my poor knees. This garden is close to the Broadmoor Hotel and features a Zen retreat.
1927 Spanish Mansion
These are not real animals, but rather a beautiful sculpture. I believe they are panthers. The other view shows them in the background of the swimming pool area.
This "wine bottle tree" was an hit with everyone. Every garden room had a different color palette, yet the entire landscape was very Tuscan-inspired. Containers and colors were rich and textural and used in stunning combinations. Of course, the gardener was there to answer questions.
This 1927 Spanish Colonial gave me a "Great Gatsby" feeling. It went on forever on a bluff (what else) with sweeping views. Lots of beautiful sculpture and garden art.
Here is where the tour began. Another vertigo-inducing site. The area that appealed the most to me was this tiered back patio. The wall increases seating without taking up floor space, and the planting bed is supposed to be safe from deer. I wonder? I did like the gas "campfire" to the left because it was made to look like a natural part of the landscape.