The Long and Pretty Views at The Morris Arboretum

The Swan Pond showing the Marble Love Temple. The structure was modeled after a Vitruvius and Augustan design, students of architecture.

When I arrived at the 92 acre Morris Arboretum, it was a very stormy day, but that was not going to stop me from seeing the gardens. I had just stopped at The Camera Store (really its name) to purchase a ‘raincoat’ for my Nikon. And it came in quite handy. I even was lucky to have one for myself in my Jeep.

The 1908 Pump House used to push water uphill to the garden fountain and Compton Mansion. Also, it was used for the livestock in the fields. See the darkened sky?

Another view of this pretty structure, set in an idyllic setting. Love the exfoliation of the  birch to the left and the bridge to the right, real designer touches.

While I was at The Camera Store near Philadelphia, the salesman who was waiting on me, mentioned that he was from Reading (sixty miles away), the city nearest where I grew up. The salesman coincidentally lived ON MY GRANDFATHER’S ESTATE in Jacksonwald, PA, near Reading,  in a new development that was built there on the huge property after its sale many years ago!!! I went to see the new builds there too. I was so sad to see all the forests and fields gone.

I was literally dumbstruck to say the least, about what was built, and that someone I just met was living there.  What was the chance?  This was the same property where I originally grew up as a youngster in one of the tenant houses (still there as the big property was parceled off). Actually it was a summer cottage (so said by my parents), but estate workers lived in the other two homes in this scenic area, so to me it seemed like a house for the staff. Our house was only a pinch nicer than the other two with a full wrap around porch. But the odd meeting does not happen to stop here, no.

When I was at Chanticleer, I also ran into a couple from Reading, near the home that I previously owned before moving here to NY. Now the Chanticleer garden is 60 miles away from my former home and this seemed really odd that I would meet people living so near and on where I was living in Pennsylvania. To make the story even more strange, this couple, a doctor and his wife, are coming up to NY wine country this summer. They will be traveling onto Canada and Niagara on the Lake. That is really close to where I now live.  I had wished I had a business card to give them, because I would have surly met up with these really nice people. We chatted for a really long time at Chanticleer. Small world.

The Rose Garden is a mix of perennials, roses, annuals, and wood plants. Ornament is placed throughout.

The Log Cabin was once a private retreat of the owner, Lydia Morris. It is sited in the woodland, beside a babbling stream.

This view reminds me so much of one of the places that I lived. I get so homesick going back to PA.

The long views and pathways are stunning.

The trees and ferns are so lush. PA was getting a lot of rain.

The Oak Allee.

So many driveways where I am from are similar to this view. Remember the Daniel Boone drive? But none would have this creative graphic application applied.

Graphic on the asphalt mimics the branching above.

Nothing like a Spring show!

Can anyone say healthy roses? In Niagara Falls the roses are still disease free, but not for long I am guessing. Here they are full and healthy.

This garden is a great example of mixing roses with other plants. I myself often mix roses with Nepeta and Lavender. And like below, where conditions allow, foxglove and lupine.

But not everything was coming up roses. And it was getting ready to down pour. More dark skies.

I just thought the view was nice. It is a pretty stone archway, so typical of Pennsylvania landscapes.

The grazing sheep greet visitors as they drive into the property. They are silhouette cutout sheep on the north facing slope which also houses the Magnolia collection.

I wonder if people visiting do a double take. I knew the sheep were cutouts, but I bet the kids go wild when they see them.

The Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania.

I hope you enjoyed the views. I have the  Out on a Limb: A Tree Adventure exhibit to show you coming up. It is a very creative project. One, like architecture students might have designed, yet was created by seasoned architects and engineers. Can you guess what you are seeing by the image below? A true arboreal experience from 50 feet in the air.

The Train Garden is coming to show you too. They are two really unique features to the Morris Arboretum. The trains and buildings where not yet in place, but it really was a fascinating display in miniature. One super big and one small, the power and mystery of scale in design.

Next post: Is Home Where You Were Born?, a look at where I lived before and what it means today.

Then off to Chanticleer.

About Garden Walk Garden Talk

I love to photograph, paint, draw, design, garden, travel the world, and pass on a few tips and ideas that I learned through experience as a Master Gardener and architect. I am highly trained in my field and enjoy my work each and every day. I garden in Niagara Falls, NY in zone 6-B. Find me at:
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40 Responses to The Long and Pretty Views at The Morris Arboretum

  1. I really loved this tour….so green & lush and lots of trees! The setting for the log cabin is divine! I would sleep on the deck next to the stream.

  2. tina@inthegarden says:

    What a lovely tour. That bubbling brook by the cabin is sweet!

  3. I wish I had been able to go with you to the arboretum or that I had time now. It is such a beautiful place with well-labeled specimen plants but great design too.

    • I too wish you could have come. But the weather was not so great. It kept clearing, then darkening back and forth. I had to leave right before a down pour too. I doubt my camera would have stayed dry in that one.

  4. Beautiful! I love the ferns! What an amazing place…as always wonderful pics!

  5. GirlSprout says:

    Wow, everything is so lush. The oak alley is so green it’s surreal to me. It makes me long to see a climate that is more green and moist.

  6. Graziella says:

    Wow, looks like a wonderfull place, I especially like the stream with the stone archway, I could sit there for hours under a tree there just listening to the water…… ehh, off to work now.

  7. Thanks for sharing.. I love when you take your readers on walks like this. Beautiful photos of a place that I would like to visit one day.

  8. The darkened skies led to 1. meeting the guy in the camera shop who lived in your old homestead area and 2. good lighting for your photos!! Love the lush ferns along the pathways. That babbling brook running in front of the house is so picturesque…really nice. Hard to go home isn’t it? Change is cruel sometimes.
    Love the oak allee and the branches drawn on the road.

    • What were the chances? The weather was the reason for stopping at the camera store. I even got a filter for the lens too. But it was just a UV filter to protect an expensive lens. I should have had it before traveling, but the lens stayed in a really good case. It is NOT the lens I took to NC because I was afraid of damaging it. I just used the lens that came with my D80, a consumer lens that is not so great, but I do like that it is a zoom.

  9. gauchoman2002 says:

    I second the comments by Karen and Tina, the log cabin setting is just awesome. I think I would spend most days sitting on the porch by the brook, just watching and listening. That would be fantastic.

  10. I really enjoyed this tour through your eyes…you bring us breathtaking views and unique perspectives..I must get to this garden one day….I love planting other perennials with my roses too…the stone archway, the tree lined drive and the log cabin were so relaxing and welcoming…another great post Donna.

  11. PJ Girl says:

    What a beautiful tour – there is a great sense of peace and the photographs are simply stunning.

  12. Jeanette says:

    Sorry you had to deal with the elements but the photographs are so green and lush. Very enjoyable for us, your fans! The foxgloves and roses are amazing. I loved the log cabin with the stream running by. I can just smell and hear the peacefulness from your capture. Beautiful. I hope you experience more serendipity on your Pennsylvania tour. Thanks for sharing. Did you go to Bartram’s Garden by chance? I was wondering what it was like. We are getting thunderstorms in Texas, too.

  13. What a wonderful post of gorgeous views and wonderful plants! Everything is so green and lush, just gorgeous.

  14. What great photos! I always get scared when I have to take pictures when there’s not a lot of light, but yours are wonderful. Do you know how the graphic was made on the path? Was it painted?

    • I am guessing it was paint used specifically for asphalt, most likely because of the color, and they way that the asphalt took the paint. I am sure they wanted it to last, so the paint was a most important consideration.

  15. b-a-g says:

    Before reading your posts I didn’t have an image of Philedelphia in my head. I do now.

  16. Marguerite says:

    That stand of ferns is just wonderful. I love how first thing in the year they stand up so straight. Very lush looking place. I liked the old buildings too and the mature trees, there’s no faking a well aged garden.

    • You are so right. The well aged garden is hard to fake. That is why I like designing on the estates I have done here in NY. They come with trees and shrubs far older than me. Really good bones laid in place long before.

  17. Laurrie says:

    I remember so well sitting on that log cabin deck, over the little stone-edged creek, during a visit to Morris in June 2007. Your post brought a great garden visit back to me. Fun!

  18. Indie says:

    I absolutely love that log cabin next to the stream! What a peaceful looking place. Pennsylvania has so many beautiful areas. I lived in Pittsburgh for awhile and got to travel to other parts of PA occasionally – it really is a gorgeous state.

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