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Blackwood, 1974, 1986, 2003-2012

Garden consultant, garden designer:
Kemenyffy, Susan Hale
Carrie T. Watson Garden Club
Physical description:
1 folder+ 36 photographic prints; 15 digital images
Mixed archival materials
United States of America, Pennsylvania, Butler County, Harrisville
Blackwood (Harrisville, Pennsylvania)
1974, 1986, 2003-2012
Blackwood is a forty-acre property that serves as a performance venue for a restored Art Deco theater pipe organ. The gardens were designed for strolling after the performances. The owners purchased part of their property, which borders mining areas, in 1970 and built a simple structure so they could obtain electricity. Other buildings were constructed and the nearby gardens in the 1970s and 1980s were planted with colorful annuals. Walkways were paved for easy access. Perennial garden beds were designed in the 1990s and planted first with more than seventy varieties of daylilies in raised beds with large rocks from the property anchoring the garden and interplanted with herbs, followed by plantings of sedum, hibiscus and hydrangeas to extend the season of blooms. Next to a swimming pool a 30-foot long pergola supports wisteria, beyond which there is a shade garden of ligularia, cimicifuga and ostrich ferns. A circular garden that is about sixty feet in diameter sits in a sunny meadow. That garden is divided into quadrants, each with distinct plantings of colorful spring bulbs and summer perennials. A spring house and pond are connected by an arced bridge to a fern garden with native and cultivated varieties, perennial geranium and snakeroot for color and nearby flowering shrubs that add fragrance. Beyond there is a woodland garden with oak, maple and wild cherry trees and naturalized Spanish bluebells.
Future plans include a meditation garden comprised of a 40-foot diameter labyrinth of stones with grass walkways that will be sited near the woodland garden. Another feature on the property is a 70-foot tall clock tower with an antique Seth Thomas clock.
Persons and groups associated with the garden include: Susan Kemenyffy (garden consultant and designer, 2000-2013).
The folder includes worksheets, and photocopies of articles.
This property is featured in "Work of Art," by Melissa Rayworth, photography by Laura Petrilla, in Pittsburgh Magazine, Sept. 2009, pp. 70-75; and in a pending article by Susan Kemenyffy, "The Blackwood Experience; Harrisville, Pennsylvania," to be published by the American Theater Organ Society in Spring 2013
Local number:
Data Source:
Archives of American Gardens

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