A secret garden

Jut outside of Charlottesville, on the grounds of an old farm, is a garden unlike anything I've seen before. I recently got an unexpected chance to explore it. The opportunity was a bit of a surprise, so I didn't have my camera on me. Some iPhone pictures with have to suffice.

When we started our walk, we passed through some fairly traditional gardens and fields

The paths twisted and turned with several switchbacks. We wondered if the person leading the group really knew where he was going. Maybe this garden we were going to was just some woods?

When I looked down and saw smooth stones lining the "gutter" on either side of the path, I knew we were getting close.

We came to a wide, wood gate, we were in a massive Japanese garden.

We eventually came to a house that was surrounded by bamboo fencing.

It had beautiful rain chains hanging from the roof.

Inside the house, we were greeted with a sign that made us realize what was inside. It was very dark inside the house, so excuse the grainy pictures.

The exterior walls of the house slide back, so the tea room could be an open air space.

After exploring the house, we decided to make our way down to the pond at the bottom of the garden. Along the way, one of the gardeners in the group remarked that every plant in the garden was imported. From the bamboo to the ground cover to the trees. Some of the trees had beautiful, delicate leaves.

There were several rock crossings down by the water. The leader of our group said that every rock in the garden was brought in by truck and placed according to a plan.

Some of the rocks were placed to form a waterfall...which can be turned on and off.

I felt pretty lucky to be able to explore the garden in a small group of friends. Apparently, this garden is sometimes open for Charlottesville's Garden Week, so if you're interested in exploring this space yourself, keep an eye out in the spring for the garden tour.


  1. You have got a nice garden out there. I think a connection with plants means a connection with the nature itself.

  2. ack!! this is amazing. i think a call to elle decor is in order -- or at least Albemarle magazine!

  3. Its beautiful. Serene and peaceful. love the riverlets at the side of the paths.


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