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Lost In The Garden Green

Jane Neill-Hancock

Wayne, United States

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Featured in Color Me A Rainbow in Nature – Green, 24-Aug-2013

New Jersey Botanical Gardens, Skylands Manor, Ringwood NJ USA
18-Aug-2013

Dedicated in 1984, the garden is the culmination of two eras of landscape architecture under the direction of Francis Lynde Stetson, owner of Skylands from 1891-1922. The garden contains an extensive variety of plants, evergreens and deciduous trees and shrubs in specialty areas. Of particular interest are the crabapple vista, terraced gardens, perennial and annual gardens and woodland paths. The extensive vistas of the garden and view of Ramapo Mountains frame this 96-acre botanical showplace. Visitors can tour the gardens and surrounding woods year round, from 8 am to 8 pm.

it was hot on this day, but it was easy to forget myself, to get lost in the green lawns, the flowers, the bushes and trees. I almost felt like I should have on a Victorian dress and be carrying a parasol to keep the sun off my head. These gardens were once gardens to Skylands Manor, a huge private residence. One can only imagine having gardens in your “backyard” that look like this. I found myself wishing the green arbor was a portal to this past – that I could walk through and suddenly be transported to another time and world. I could see this garden being in a Victoria Holt novel for sure.

I also found myself wondering again if God’s favorite color is GREEN or BLUE? On this day I felt it was GREEN.

I dedicate this lovely photo, which somehow almost seems like a painting, to Eleanor Hibbert (1 September 1906 – 18 January 1993) who was an English author who wrote under various pen names. Her best-known pseudonyms were Jean Plaidy, Victoria Holt, and Philippa Carr; she also wrote under the names Eleanor Burford, Elbur Ford, Kathleen Kellow, Anna Percival, and Ellalice Tate. By the time of her death, she had sold more than 100 million books. I have read almost all her books under the name Victoria Holt – which are Gothic mystery romances. The Skylands Castle/Manor and gardens seem a perfect setting for one of her novels and I know she would love these gardens.

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Artwork Comments

  • Elaine Teague
  • Jane Neill-Hancock
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  • Jane Neill-Hancock
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