Bus Trip: Mt. Cuba and Winterthur Gardens
March 12, 2019
DIG IT! Magazine and the Rollin’ Garden Party Bus will take you on a very special garden experience on Thursday, May 2, 2019. Join us on a Spring Flower Fling for a day!
Sit back, relax, leave the driving to us as you enjoy guided tours of two du Pont estate gardens with very different landscape philosophies.
STOP ONE: Mt. Cuba Center in Hockassin, is the former home of Lammot du Pont Copeland and his wife Pamela, passionate conservators of native landscapes. It is now a public garden that focuses on native plants with more than 30 acres of display gardens. We will have a two-hour guided walking tour of all the gardens including the original formal gardens surrounding the Main House, designed by Marion Cruger Coffin in the 1950s.
Then we’re off into the 18-acre naturalistic gardens developed by landscape architect Seth Kelsey, which feature sweeps of wildflowers under towering tulip trees, the West Slope Path through dense woodland and native perennials, a series of ponds with wet-site bloomers and a bog garden with carnivorous plants, Dogwood Path – a forest-edge garden with blooming trees and flowers, Woodland Path with grasses, flowers and blossoming trees, a native Meadow, Trillium Garden, and a 15,000 square-foot Trial Garden of native plants and their cultivars – all environmentally sustainable landscapes.
The use of native plants is stunning. Their great swaths and imposing beauty cannot be denied. The mission of Mt. Cuba Center: “To inspire an appreciation for the beauty and value of native plants and a commitment to support the habitats that sustain them.”
STOP TWO: Not to be outdone, Winterthur will be in full-blown Spring attire. We’ll arrive just in time to have lunch in the Pavilion Restaurant on our own. Then we’ll work it off on a 1.5-hour guided Garden Walk within 60 acres of this 1,000-acre estate of Henry Francis du Pont, a dedicated Harvard University-graduated horticulturist. Flowering trees, blossom-packed azaleas and rhododendrons, spring ephemerals, bulbs galore, and so much more fill the magnificent gardens of Mr. du Pont, who proclaimed himself to be Head Gardener and to whom color was the thing that counted most.
After the tour, we will have one hour on our own to do as we wish: visit the gift shop, wander the nearby gardens, or take a half-hour tram ride to the far reaches of the estate.
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