My Montana

My Montana
My Montana

Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Elizabethan Garden

One of the attractions in Manteo, on historic Roanoke Island is the Elizabethan Garden. It was built to be a living memorial to Sir Walter Scott and the lost colony.  Since Queen Elizabeth I was in power then, it was built in the style of the gardens built to entertain her. Because I love to visit gardens, I couldn't wait to visit this one. Finally I caught a pretty afternoon and went.

Entrance is through the gift shop

I bought my ticket and stepped out the door and was immediately taken aback. In the small water feature in front of me were at least four invasives, water hyacinth, water lettuce, parrot feather, and elephant's ear. (I did come home and write the director, citing the North Carolina information on these plants,  and got a nice reply that they are considering a review of all their plants, with the idea of removing some of them. )

A few of the invasive plants

The garden is mostly a shade garden, growing under big oaks and pines with lots of understory plants. Azaleas and camellias were blooming, although most bushes were nearing the end of their bloom. A few impatiens and a few roses were also sporadically blooming. The garden has lots of hydrangeas, and must be really beautiful when they are in full bloom. The mostly green was very soothing and I enjoyed seeing the bones of the garden.

The view looking up

Where it was a little sunnier, tall pines grew.

A shot down a path between tall hedges to a pine

Instead of big vistas - there were none - I got lost in the beauty and mystery of camellias, azaleas, and roses.

Touch of pink

One of the "in you face" camelias 

Christmas colors


Candy cane camelia?

Largest statue honoring Queen Elizabeth I

A very blowsy rose still blooming the the tiny rose garden

I think this is some kind of hydrangea

Birds were singularly absent - but I did manage to catch this cardinal

The garden ends at the water

I loved this reproduction of a period gazebo

Double white camellia

Azalea twins

A view of the fountain in the very formal sunken garden

Grass catching sunlight

Another pair of white camellias

A view over part of the gardens around the gift shop

Holly berries on a huge American holly tree

The garden is all dressed up for Christmas.  You have to buy a different ticket to enjoy it at night and I didn't think it was worth it. But I did enjoy the few hours I spent there, one partly sunny afternoon.