October 11, 2023

Saturday Sessions at the Garden Fling

Brandywine Cottage 1

Our Saturday visits during the recent Garden Fling were magical. We started by visiting two gardens west of Philadelphia.

At David Culp's Brandywine Cottage garden in Downingtown the landscaping and the props were warm and welcoming.

Brandywine Cottage 2

The branches in this display of potted Pitcher Plants (Saracenia spp.) appeared to be placed on purpose--natural, yet artistically arranged. If they were accidental, nature was wonderfully collaborating.

Brandywine Cottage 3

That gardening approach was repeated throughout the gardens in the arrangements and combinations of plants. Just lovely.

Brandywine Cottage 4

I imagined myself spending hours on this porch--observing nature, reading books, talking with friends...

Brandywine Cottage 5

Throughout the garden, there were lovely spots to sit, relax, celebrate, and enjoy.

Edgewood 1

John Lonsdale's Edgewood Gardens in Exton also was very cozy and welcoming.

Edgewood 2

So many fall-blooming Cyclamen plants were on display and for sale. It inspired me to think about planting some in my garden.

Edgewood 3

There were many blooming outdoors throughout the carpet of other ground covers, as well.

Edgewood 4

Like Brandywine Cottage, this garden, too, had beautiful displays of Pitcher Plants (Saracenia spp.).

Edgewood 5

Hillsides were artistically covered with distinct and fascinating species.

Wyneden 1

Next, we arrived at Wayne Guymon's WynEden in Chadds Ford.

Wyneden 2

Again, the plant combinations and placements were lovely and artfully arranged. I loved this garden shed!

Wyneden 3

Joseph's Coat (Amaranthus tricolor) really caught my eye--it was quite large and colorful!

Wyneden 4

Autumn Crocuses (Colchicum spp.) were abundant and lush.

Wyneden 5

They added magic to spots throughout the garden.

Owl Creek Farm 1

After lunch, we headed to Steve and Ann Hutton's private Owl Creek Farm in West Chester. The home, itself, and the grounds offered another unique style of gardening to explore.

Owl Creek Farm 2

These sunny border plantings were colorful and artfully arranged.

Owl Creek Farm 3

Their Dahlia collection was amazing! I might have to do a separate post about them, although I didn't take note of the hybrid names. They were huge and so healthy!

Owl Creek Farm 4

And the Oranges (Citrus spp.) were plump and ready for harvest.

Owl Creek Farm 5

Owl Creek Farm truly offered a beautiful blend of sunny and partial shade gardens--so colorful and bright.

Stoneleigh 1

Our final destination of the day was Stoneleigh, a free public garden in Villanova. The land is situated in the homelands of the indigenous Lenape people. Its history is fascinating, and the buildings and the gardens are impressive.

Stoneleigh 2

The shape of this weeping Redbud (Cercis canadensis) seemed perfect for this spot at the corner of the main house.

Stoneleigh 3

The cascading-edge water garden was really special--I hadn't seen one quite like this before.

Stoneleigh 4

Like several other gardens on Saturday, Stoneleigh's Pitcher Plants (Saracenia spp.) were numerous, varied, and fascinating.

Stoneleigh 5

Who doesn't love an infinity view down a lush pergola walkway?

This was another fabulous day of garden tours with friends! Stay tuned for more coverage of the Philly Fling. And check out many more descriptions of our garden adventures at the Fling website.


  1. Hello Beth, oh my, this is a delight of a post. I went back and looked at each photo over and over again. Fantastic photography, I love the first photo and the porch photo with the lights in the house making it cozy.
    I have no luck with cyclamen.

    1. Thank you, Carla. I had to use the phone camera because of the rain, but sometimes it takes decent photos. The gardens were certainly inspiring. I haven't tried growing Cyclamen (spring or fall) outdoors...just in pots inside in late winter/early spring.

  2. You are so good an concisely summing up a day of Flinging! I was just thinking of David Culp's garden this morning. I think it's the one that I felt like we missed out on the most because of the rain. I would have loved to have explored a little more.

    1. That is such a kind comment, Loree. :) The rain did dampen the visits a bit. It wasn't comfy, but then the photos have some unique "wet" interest. LOL. I would have enjoyed touring all of these gardens a little more. Lovely gardens.

  3. That's a LOT packed into a single day! I was surprised by all the pitcher plants. I was particularly enamored with the porch at Brandywine and the water feature at Stoneleigh.

    1. Yes, the days were busy, but fun, too. So many Saracenias! I think I could grow them in pots here, but the soil might not be quite right. I've seen them "in the wild" up in Door County, Wis., though. Those other garden features were really special. :)

  4. All present such gorgeous garden vignettes! Thanks Beth for sharing these beautiful spaces with us. Tina

    1. Hi Tina: Thanks for stopping by, and you're so welcome. It would be wonderful to meet you at a Fling or another event or gathering someday. :)

  5. Wonderful series of photos of wonderful gardens--enjoying seeing what I missed though wishing i hadn't missed it--but just wasn't working this year. Thanks for giving us a tour.

    1. Thanks! Wish you'd been there to enjoy it, too, but totally understandable. Hope to see you at one of the Flings in the coming years. They're always fun. :)

  6. Nice summary and pictures, Beth! I'm enjoying reading your and other people's posts about the Fling because it was impossible for one person to see everything, and this way we can see what we missed!

    1. Thanks. :) So true: I was looking at the websites of several of the gardens we visited, and I realized how very much I missed. I'll have to make a roadtrip to PA in the spring or summer.

  7. Thank you for sharing these photos. Everything looks wonderful and I so enjoyed the tour!

    1. It was fabulous! Every Fling is great fun, and I have wonderful memories from over the years. <3

  8. Wonderful post. I know I missed some parts of gardens because I was taking shelter from the rain. ...And yes, you can grow the Pitcher plants in a container, just use peat as a planting medium and keep them wet. Gail

    1. Hey Gail: Good to know about the Pitcher Plants. I'll have to try some; I got such a kick out of seeing so many of them. I've seen them here in Wisconsin at times, but more often at natural areas and public gardens, and not so often in so many gardens. :)

  9. That first David Cup photo suggests I need to hang on to all the autumn branches coming down. Clearly I am missing a chance to add a little free drama.

    1. Ha! Good point. Sorry for the delay in responding...it's been a busy autumn! Are you enjoying the warm temps?

  10. Love all the chairs and benches covered in lichens. And, interesting to see how they wove the rough wood posts along the top of the infinity pergola.

    1. Yes, they were beautiful...it was more moist and lush and forested there than it is here. I loved it, but I also love my Oak Savanna/Prairie habitats, too. :)

  11. You 'made lemonade' out of a rainy day. Those gardens all look enticing. Love lichen (but not so much to sit on)


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