My Montana

My Montana
My Montana

Sunday, August 21, 2016

A Surprising Encounter with Kingsbrae Gardens

August 1, 2016

This is another adventure from my vacation with two of my girls.  And do get your coffee first. I DID edit my pictures a LOT but there are still too many. 

I was advised by several people to be sure and visit St. Andrews, New Brunswick, on our drive to Halifax. It has lots of history, several walking tours, a lovely harbor and, as we found out after we got there, a wonderful garden. Kris and I visited the harbor and the downtown area and then found where to get information on the town. I knew there were walking tours but wanted the paper copy. So we walked about a half mile to the information center and there found the advertisement for the Kingsbrae Garden. Kris immediately picked that to go visit.

We were also advised by the lady giving us information that the garden had a great restaurant and their lobster bisque was wonderful. So we planned to go pay our entrance fee, and then get lunch before visiting the garden. But the restaurant was closed for a wedding.  But the park was so wonderful, we were happy to wait a few more hours for lunch.

We were in awe of the brilliant entrance, then the fabulous textures of the white garden and the peak into the formal garden, all before we got to the Visitor Center to pay the entrance fee. 

This garden has lots to see, from formal gardens to a maze. to a vegetable garden, a garden of evergreens, a garden of succulents, a garden for pollinators, and even several kinds of farm animals. There were also fruit trees and other themed gardens, as well as a wild trail through a wooded area.   Kris is a knitter and she bought a skein of wool from the gift shop that was taken from one of the alpacas we visited.

But the most important garden was the one where garden sculptures by Canadian artists were featured. This is definitely a garden to visit if you can.

Our first view - from the parking lot

Then we found the white garden on our left and a tall  hedge on our right

One view of the white garden

I loved the closeup view of these flowers.

I had to climb on a bench to peek into the formal garden behind the hedge

The white garden crossed the path just before we arrived at the Visitor Center where color burst out

A view from inside the formal garden - there were four beds like this one as well as hedges 

I love texture and this garden had it in spades 

Another view of a walkway 

Everything was thickly planted and growing lushly

I loved the juxtaposition of these flowers with the purple, shaded background

The evergreen garden was also very textured and set off the smooth statue

The density of the evergreen plantings was amazing

Pollinators were enjoying the pollinator garden and I enjoyed studying them

I love goats so enjoyed meeting these guys

One of the recently sheared alpacas

There were several of these kind of figures

I found this mysterious guy in the evergreen maze

This just may have been my favorite sculpture

Apples were getting color

This was a beautiful sculpture - but I didn't notice the hand until I looked at the picture

I particularly enjoyed this sculpture/bench

Several of the sculptures were made for streams or ponds

I loved the statement this sculpture made -
but it was way too big for a personal garden

A butterfly sculpture

This one won my personal whimsy award

I got a chuckle out of this beaver trio

This building held the restaurant which we didn't get to visit -
 but the building and landscaping was gorgeous 

These giant chairs were everywhere on the Outer Banks,
 but this was the best displayed one I've seen

We needed to continue our trip so we fially dragged ourselves from this garden and went back back to trying to find a place to eat lunch. The restaurant we were advised to go to had just closed when we arrived, so we ended up at a fish and chips place. I never bothered to find out its name, but the fish and chips were prepared perfectly. They ended up being the best food we had in Canada, even though the girls hunted for the best restaurants. Nova Scotia seems to not believe in garlic or much spice except salt and pepper, so the food was way too bland for our Texan taste. Kris and I held out to 3:00 PM in order to eat more fish and chips at the restaurant in St. Andrews on the return trip. 

If you love history, cute towns, gardens, whale watching or even kayaking, St. Andrews has something for you. You could easily spend several days there and not get bored.

For more information on this award winning garden, click here.