The Garden Club of Virginia has organized the 78th Annual Historic Garden Week in Virginia from April 16th through April 23rd, presenting house and garden tours all across the state of Virginia.
Virginians from north, south, in the mountains, and by the sea are opening their doors and gates to welcome visitors to their unforgettable gardens and delightful homes dressed for Spring with fabulous flower arrangements provided by local garden clubs. Most of the properties welcoming visitors on specific days are privately owned, but the proceeds from this tour support the preservation and restoration of the grounds of more than three dozen of Virginia’s historic landmarks.
Richmond is proud to host tours on Tuesday April 19th, Wednesday April 20th, and Thursday April 21st. Schedule.
Tuesday’s tour features homes and gardens in Richmond’s Hampton Gardens/Cary Street Road area. Built in the 20′s and 30′s, these homes range from Georgian Revival to English Tudor to Colonial. Each is filled with furnishings and art that reflect the personalities of its owners. Gardens range from dramatic slopes with multiple stone terraces highlighted with banks of roses to a private backyard with a low maintenance garden of river birch, hydrangea, hosta, and Virginia’s famed azaleas.
Wednesday’s tour highlights the grandeur of Monument Avenue, the first street in America to be named a National Historic Landmark. Homes open for the tour reflect a variety of sophisticated American and European architectural styles popular in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Grand entrances, soaring spaces, period architectural details, and manicured gardens and courtyards provide a feast for your eyes and wonderful ideas to take home with you. Make prior arrangements and have lunch at the Branch House, the largest single family home built on Monument Avenue, now the Virginia Center for Architecture at 2501 Monument Avenue. Homes on Monument Avenue are not often open to the public – this is an opportunity not to be missed!
Thursday’s tour takes place in the Windsor Farms area of Richmond and includes the Windsor House built in 1945 on the site of the Windsor Farm. Located in a park-like setting, originally designed by Charles Gillette, noted landscape architect, the original brick structure and its seamless additions are an oasis in the city. Even a later home, a Dutch Colonial built in 1970, opens its doors and gardens to the public on this Wednesday. Enjoy a prearranged lunch under a tent at Agecroft Hall and enjoy the grounds and gardens of Agecroft as an added bonus.
Here’s an inn-side tip: plan to attend all three tours in Richmond, and book your three-night stay at Richmond’s premier bed and breakfast right in the middle of it all in the heart of Richmond’s historic Fan District. Book your stay for Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday nights – April 18, 19, 20, reference OPEN HOUSE, and get 35% off Wednesday’s room rate. In addition, you’ll get a hearty gourmet breakfast every morning that will stick to your ribs for the day’s walking tour. Come back to the inn, enjoy our complimentary evening wine and cheese in the inn’s private gardens. You’ll get free off-street parking, private en-suite bathrooms, and even free Wi-Fi to keep up with your e-mail – if you must.
The tours are walking tours, so please wear comfortable walking shoes for your own safety and as a courtesy to the homeowners who have generously opened their residences for the tour. Each ticket will have a map of the houses open on the tour. Organizers of the tours request no interior photography or sketching and no use of cell phones within the tour houses. Tickets will be available on tour day at any of the properties open for touring. Advance tickets for the tour are available on-line, as are guidebooks with all the details about each property and tours across the state. Luncheons must be prearranged as well! Make your plans now!