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Gray Garden 1959-2006

Physical description:
2 folders+ 61 35 mm. slides (photographs); 4 photographic prints; 5 safety film negatives
Mixed archival materials
United States of America, District of Columbia, Washington
Washington (D.C.)
Gray Garden (Washington, D.C.)
Situated in the Georgetown section of Washington, D.C., this garden was originally established in the 1930s or 1940s with design work by Rose Greely. In 1958, the property's new owners commissioned a design from Perry H. Wheeler. Structurally the garden has changed little in the past 50 years and still includes many of Wheeler's details: a "thimble" rotating fountain jet, a ram's head mask, a marble "reclining" figure, and four boxwood circles in beds. Wheeler installed hardscapes of different kinds throughout the site's terraces and designed the gardens with the idea of entertaining and low maintenance during the summer months. Boxwood, liriope, mondo grass, bulbs, and other all-season plants were used. The lower, formal terrace features boxwood-edged beds, a fountain and a lawn. The upper terrace includes a swimming pool, greenhouse, garden house, vegetable garden, walkways, and cutting beds. The one-acre size of the garden is unusual in this urban setting and its continuity over the years makes it a site of special interest.
Persons associated with the garden include Perry H. Wheeler (landscape architect, 1958-1980) and Rose Greely (landscape architect, 1930s-1940s).
The folders include worksheets; garden plans; photocopies of articles about the garden; photocopies of Wheeler notes, plant lists, and correspondence relating to the garden; and additional information.
Garden has been featured in "Washington's Green and Flowering Outdoor Rooms," House & Garden, July 1962, pp. 90-91+
Garden has been featured in Adrian Higgins, "Secret Gardens," Washington Home, March 10, 1994, pp. 15-21
Garden has been featured in Adrian Higgins, The Secret Gardens of Georgetown (Boston: Little, Brown, 1994), pp. 116+
Local number:
Data Source:
Archives of American Gardens

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