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Bickie McDonnell Garden, 1983; 1987; 2009

Landscape architect:
Pellet, Tom
Menzer, Oscar
Physical description:
2 folders+ 32 35 mm. slides (photographs)
Slides (photographs)
United States of America, Tennessee, Shelby County, Memphis
Bickie McDonnell Garden (Memphis, Tennessee)
1983 1987 2009
Located on three acres in Memphis, Tennessee, the Bickie McDonnell Garden is comprised of a main lawn, herbaceous border, formal rose and pool gardens, vegetable garden, and upper and lower woodland gardens. Before the house was built or any planting could begin the site was cleared of overgrown privet and mulberry vines, only the white oak and hickory trees were left in place. In 1980 Memphis artist and landscape designer Tom Pellett working with the owner initiated a plan for the property that emphasized the dramatic vistas and discreet gardens. More than just one large garden, the owner has created a series of gardens that merge seemlessly one to the next. Native varieties of wildflowers, trees and shrubs are featured, and river rocks, boulders, old cobblestones and bricks gathered in the region were repurposed as structural elements of the garden.
Dramatic vistas define this garden. Pea gravel and brick walkways, stone paths, and a dry creek bed lead from vista to vista. Hardwood trees, indigenous to the area and the most striking characteristic of the landscape, provide structure and frame long views. Several sculptures are featured in garden rooms, as well as Corinthian columns. A dry creek bed spanned by a wooden bridge is filled with fieldstone and boulders from Arkansas. The main garden paths are comprised of pea gravel edged in brick, with a brick walkway to access the formal rose garden and gazebo.
Persons associated with the garden include Tom Pellett (landscape designer, 1980-present); Jasper Jones (gardener, 1980-present); Oscar Menzev (architect, date unknown).
Archives of American Gardens encourages the use of its archival materials for non-commercial, educational and personal use under the fair use provision of U.S. copyright law. Use or copyright restrictions may exist. It is incumbent upon the researcher to ascertain copyright status and assume responsibility for usage. All requests for duplication and use must be submitted in writing and approved by Archives of American Gardens.
Memphis Garden Club facilitated the submission of this garden's documentation.
The folder includes worksheets, site plans, detailed information about the garden's plants, photocopies of articles about the garden, background details from and about the owners, and additional information.
Garden has been featured in Christine Arpe Gang, "Discover Gardens Pleasures," The Commercial Appeal, May 22, 2001
Garden has been featured in Bonnie Martin, "Gardens Private and Personal," 2008
Garden has been featured in Sally Wasowski with Andy Wasowski, "Gardening with Native Plants of the South," 1994
Repository Loc.:
Smithsonian Gardens, PO Box 37012, Capital Gallery, Suite 3300, MRC 506, Washington, DC 20013-7012
Local number:
Data Source:
Archives of American Gardens

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