United States of America, Alabama, Jefferson, Birmingham
Ruffner Page Garden (Birmingham, Alabama)
The Tudor revival style house built in the 1920s dictated the English country house style of the garden for this approximately three acre property, installed by the current owners who also renovated the house. Mature trees surround the property, now divided into garden rooms with bricks walls and steps delineating spaces. Trimmed boxwood was used as another, softer border surrounding lawn and terraces, and the design is predominately rectilinear, formal and symmetrical. The house is approached from a Belgian block motor court with a Tudor style limestone bench and formal linear stone terrace fronting the house. Off to one side there is a friends' gate into the garden set in a high brick wall. A small grove of Japanese maple trees frame a fountain alongside the house, just beyond the porch. There is a formal upper terrace with iron outdoor furniture with beds of flowers for cutting off to the side. The swimming pool and pool house fill another room with a sizeable service court behind that is approached from its own drive that is lined with evergreens. Additional garden rooms include a lawn court with a sundial, a guesthouse, another lower lawn, and a wild flower garden in front of the woodlands at the back of the property.
Persons associated with the garden include: Nabb and Frances Drennen (former owners, 1929-1935); George and Rose Johnston (former owners, 1935-1960); Emmet and Mary Anne O'Neal (former owners, 1960-1981); John and Betty McMahon (former owners, 1981-1998); Henry Sprott Long (architect for addition to house, 1970s); John Carraway (architect for pool house, 1980s); Katherine Shannon Owens (renovation architect, 1999-2000); Ben Page (landscape architect, 1999-2000); Pratt Brown (landscape contractor, 1999-2000); Stephen Dorsey (construction, 1999-2000).