Posts Tagged ‘conservatory garden’

John P. Humes Japanese Stroll Garden

June 30, 2013

There are very few Japanese gardens in the city. Such gardens require some amount of space for winding paths and quiet environs for comtemplation, something which the city sorely lacks. The Japanese garden in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden offers one opportunity to experience such a garden, with a nice pond, small waterfall, and a wood pavilion. A little more hidden and out of the way is the John P. Humes Japanese Garden on the North Shore of Long Island. Inspired by a visit to Kyoto in the 1960’s, John Humes turned a corner of his estate into a Japanese garden. He hired a Japanese landscape designer to design the garden and to ensure that the proper foliage and other Japanese elements were in place, including a tea house that was brought over from Japan. This garden provides a nice escape from the bustle of the city. It is most definitely a strolling garden, with moss-covered paths, stepping stones, and shady Japanese maples.

John P Humes Japanese Stroll Garden

John P Humes Japanese Stroll Garden

John P Humes Japanese Stroll Garden

On some Saturdays, you can catch a tea ceremony demonstration at the teahouse. Check out their events calendar for times.

John P Humes Japanese Stroll Garden

John P Humes Japanese Stroll Garden

If tea is not your thing, you can also just watch the koi in the nearby pond.

John P Humes Japanese Stroll Garden

The garden is at the corner of Oyster Bay Road and Dogwood Lane in Mill Neck, NY. It is best reached by car, but you can also get there by taking the LIRR to Oyster Bay station. The garden is a short cab ride from the station. This year, the garden is open on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays until October 27, from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Admission is $10. Dogs are not allowed.

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The Central Park Conservatory Garden

February 28, 2010

Everyone who lives in or visits New York City knows about Central Park.  Its allure is undeniable.  There are so many aspects to the park it feels like different ecosystems melding into one another as you go further north.  It’s a shame that many people who go to Central Park tend to stay in the primary areas below, I would guess, 96th St.  There’s a wonderful part of the park that is hidden from the public eye, found all the way uptown on 105th St and it’s called the Conservatory Garden.

I discovered this garden while planning for my wedding.  I wanted something outdoors in the city and it had to be in a garden or park.  When the Conservatory Garden fell into my radar, I knew it was the one.  In contrast to the other parts of Central Park, this garden has a formal grandeur that reveals its beauty quietly.  You don’t  need to be wedding-minded to enjoy this garden.  It’s great for people who want the most privacy Central Park can offer in a lush setting.  It’s just as good for people who want to read a book in peace as it is for those on a date.

The entrance to the garden is quite impressive and sets the tone for the three gardens behind it.

Grand entrance

The vastness of the Central Garden draws you in as you enter.

The Central Garden

On either side are shaded walkways that lead to the back of the garden.  A good spot for reading.

To the left is the path to the English Garden, also known as the Secret Garden.

The Secret Garden is a calming waterlily pond with birds bathing among its silent guardians.

The English Garden

The French Garden on the other side of the lawn has a lively spirit.

The French Garden

Go in the spring and you’ll enjoy the striking tulips around this particular garden.

I would recommend going to the Conservatory Garden in May/June when the flowers are in full bloom.  Note that photography is allowed only with a paid photo permit.  The park rangers are pretty vigilant about checking for papers.

The entrance is at 105th St and Fifth Ave and the hours are from 8 am to dusk.

For information about the history of the garden, click here.