Posts Tagged ‘“long island”’

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.

Old Westbury Gardens

May 31, 2013

Here is another grand old estate in Long Island for you to get lost in. Old Westbury Gardens has the distinction of being listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was owned by the Phipps, a family that made its fortune in shipping. The mansion sits on 200 acres filled with woods, formal gardens, a lake, and a pond. We were very impressed by the layout of everything.

The walled garden is one of the largest I’ve ever seen. You enter through ornately-carved gates and find yourself surrounded by flowers of every shape and color.

Old Westbury Gardens

Old Westbury Gardens

At one end is a waterlily pond, but sadly no frogs and not too much in the way of waterlilies either, but that didn’t detract from the grandeur of the scenery.

Old Westbury Gardens

If you walk up Linden Alley, you will catch your first glimpse of the house. I could see myself playing out a scene from the Great Gatsby here!

Old Westbury Gardens

Old Westbury Gardens

This is the view of Linden Alley from the house balcony. They were setting up a photo shoot that involved a gramophone, a grand piano, and live pigs. Any wagers on what they were shooting?

Old Westbury Gardens

Old Westbury Gardens

The house itself was furnished with pieces of the period. They were exhibiting wedding dresses from different periods in each room. I overheard one lady say she didn’t understand why there were so many brides in the house. No picture taking is allowed inside, but I got this one picture of the sunroom before I found that out. The sunroom was quite easily half the size of my apartment.

Old Westbury Gardens

When you exit the house to the west, this is the view you get of the beautiful lake. There are geese and ducks in the reflecting pool beyond.

Old Westbury Gardens

As the name implies, this place is in Old Westbury, Long Island. It is a 30-45 minute drive from Manhattan. From April 29th to October 31st, it is open every day except Tuesdays, from 10:00 am until 5:00 pm (the house opens at 11:00 am). There are house tours at 11am and 2pm. Admission for the house and grounds is $10 per person. No dogs or bikes are allowed. For more information about events that are held here or to do wedding photography, you should visit their website.