Garden Gnome: Blooms, antiques hide behind gate

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I couldn’t believe my luck when I arrived at Brigid and George Pursley’s Henry Street home. I pass the house nearly every day, slowing my run to try to peak through the sweet country garden gate to see what’s blooming on the other side.

SANDY HODSON/STAFF
If you didn’t notice it before, be sure to step back from the front of the house and admire the Pursleys’ country garden gate.

As a Sacred Heart Garden Festival volunteer, I got an early tour of the gardens on the tour this year. The Pursleys’ place is another excellent choice for the festival, which runs April 27-29.

Their lovely cherry trees will have shed their blossoms before the festival, but you will have plenty to see and ideas to try out at home. Brigid is a hands-on gardener who has spent two decades creating and changing her garden.

She got a boost from the home’s former owner, an architect, who built a lovely path from the garden gate. Brigid has filled the flowers beds bordering the path and lined them with stones.

There will be a lovely mix of flowers and ornamentals all kept orderly by boxwoods that Brigid rooted herself in her children’s old sandbox. The paths wind through the front flower beds to reach a lovely patio located just outside the front door.

You will also get a taste of another of Brigid’s passions, antiques, such as an antique bird bath.

The Pursleys had to adjust one area when a storm took out the tree that protected the shade garden on the east side of the house. But Brigid has added crepe myrtles, winter sweet and an apricot tree to protect such favorite plants such as blue, lacetop hydrangea.

You can continue the path to back of the house where the Pursleys turn a negative factor of poor drainage into a positive by creating a sunken porch area with a bed of small rocks, bordered by large stones and framed with tea olives.

Brigid planted daphnes to dress up the lattice work that blocks the car port from view.

On the west side of the house, Brigid added crepe myrtles to provide relief from the afternoon sun.

Near the street Brigid added a bed of knockout roses and some very impressive lavender.

If you didn’t notice it before, be sure to step back from the front of the house and admire the Pursleys’ country garden gate.

You’ll understand why some folks slow down to peak at what’s behind it.


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