Spring Hill Villa

Photo by Nancy Wilcox

(This is a 2017 garden description. Gardens for the 2018 tour will be announced next spring.)

The joy of gardening is abundantly apparent at Spring Hill Villa where the family has been actively gardening for 40 years. The entry garden features a 40-year-old laceleaf maple across the walk from a large incense cedar, beneath which spreads a ‘Daphnoides’ rhododendron. The garden floor is abundant with bright foliage: a Japanese painted fern, 15-year-old dwarf maidenhair fern, the showy enkianthus with its dainty, bell-like flowers and a bletilla orchid in the corner by the driveway. The rhododendron by the front door, pruned to a tree shape, is flanked by a long-established azalea with purple/mauve blossoms, contrasting with the narrow columnar shape of the ‘Purple Fountain’ beech.

At the top of the stairs leading to the back garden is an azara, with abutilon and ferns at the bottom steps. The lush back garden features a grape-trellised deck with red rhododendrons below and a leaning Kashmir cypress with drooping foliage. The sun-drenched lawn is surrounded by evergreens and an array of perennials of different colors and textures. A stately Moroccan cedar holds court over the Sound. Lady’s slipper is hiding under hardy orchids tucked behind a non-vining clematis. Near the gate is a miniature Liberty apple tree wearing socks to protect its delicious fruit. Along the fence the white blooms of stewartia contrast with the viburnum and the bright colors of the ‘Orange Rocket’ barberry.

Before returning to the stairs, cast an eye toward the brilliant blue of the sky and the vibrant green of the lawn as a backdrop and observe the rich proliferation of colors, textures, varieties, and a profusion of plants and trees native to the Pacific Northwest.

Only the front yard is wheelchair accessible.