United States of America, Pennsylvania, Chester County, Downingtown
Culp Garden (Downingtown, Pennsylvania)
Established in 1991, this one and an eighth-acre garden reflects the ambience of the 1790 William Penn yeoman's house located on the site. Autonomous gardens weave together through unique plant combinations that form a yearlong drama of varying color, intensity, and emotion. Plants can be found everywhere on the site, from flowers in the gravel of the drive to bulbs in the footpaths. A hillside features hellebores in a fantasy woodland, while a ruin/trough garden is located on the former site of an above-ground pool. Foliage provides the backbone to the garden's overall design, while containers are changed each season to create striking new combinations. Although there is a traditional four-square fenced garden plot surrounded by perennials, the overall effect is not focused on strict historic restoration. Loose drifts of plant material always have something else in them, and many plants are placed to give a self-seeded appearance. Color and form based on texture are repeated and shapes are placed carefully, being repeated to achieve unity. Plant material is appropriate for limited water resources, while fertilizer and pesticide use is curtailed in order to encourage birds and butterflies. Although there are many rare individual species and varieties in this garden the overall effect is one of harmonious, ebullient, and naturalistic design.
Persons associated with the property include: the Guie family (former owners, 19th century).
The folder includes a worksheet, site plans, a detailed narrative description of the garden, a plant list, and clippings and photocopies of articles about the garden and its designer.
Garden has been featured in Margaret Roach, "A Change of Season," Martha Stewart Living (May 1999)
Garden has been featured in Jean Creznic, "Always Something to Catch the Eye," Early American Homes Gardens 2000, pp. 20-27
Garden has been featured in David Culp, "A Feast for the Eyes," Fine Gardening (February 2000), pp. 56-60
Garden has been featured in Denise Cowie, "Growing the Season," The Philadelphia Inquirer, October 20, 2000
Garden has been featured in "Plantings," Country Gardens (Early Spring 2001), pp. 24-27
Garden has been featured in Denise Cowie, "It's Never a Bore Breeding Ever More Hellebores," The Philadelphia Inquirer, April 6, 2001
Garden has been featured in Denise Cowie, "Plant Hunter Will Tell Tales from the Field," The Philadelphia Inquirer, December 28, 2001
Garden has been featured in Adam Levine, "When Plantsmen Plot," Horticulture (May/June 2002), pp. 82-87