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9 Famous and Beautiful Topiary Gardens!

Topiary gardens are magical places where nature meets structure. Beautiful greenery is shaped by skilled hands into shapes and forms that delight the eye and bring peace to the heart. Have a look at nine of the most famous and beautiful topiary gardens in the world, all open for public visitation. 

 

Levens Hall
Topiary Gardens
Perhaps the world's oldest topiary garden still in its original design, harking back to the late 17th century. The style at the time called for clipping the trees, shrubs and bushes into geometric shapes and abstract masses. Garden rooms are made with enormous yew and beech hedges. The garden also has an orchard, a nuttery for walnuts and beechnuts and a bowling green. 

Topiary Gardens
 

 

The Garden of Drummond Castle

Topiary Gardens
Located in Perthshire in Scotland, dating back as far back as 1490, the Drummond Castle grounds have been through many changes over the many years, and today are more representative of a 17th century Scottish garden. 
 
Topiary Gardens
The low clipped embroidered hedges are in the shape of a St. Andrew's cross, and leaning topiary trees add an almost magical charm to the scenery. The tower house at the grounds has remained largely intact, and from it visitors can see the entire garden and pass through them to the distant hillsides.   
 

 

Marqueyssac

Topiary Gardens
You can find this lovely garden in the Périgord region of France, where, after feasting on some foie gras and truffles, you can walk off your meal on the beautiful paths of this enchanted place. Created in the 19th century, this garden became the life's work of one Julien de Cerval, high above the Dordogne River. 

Topiary Gardens
Cerval spent 30 years making sure that 150,000 boxwoods were groomed to resemble the surrounding hills and when looked at from above, they resemble the backs of sheep. This garden is known for its relaxing atmosphere and a feeling of quiet twilight reflection. 
 

 

Cliveden

Topiary Gardens
The house of Cliveden was the seat of the Duke of Buckingham, who was the second most powerful man in the kingdom of England (after the king of course) back in 1666. He used it as a retreat for entertaining friends and mistresses. The house burned down twice over the years but was restored each time, lastly in 1893 by Viscount William Waldorf Astor, an avid lover of the Renaissance. 

Topiary Gardens
In 1912, the garden was given to the National Trust and has been restored and replanted by them. The most beautiful reconstruction was a maze consisting of 1,100 clipped yews and covering a third of an acre. Visitors can easily get lost in this gorgeous maze, but luckily there is a maze keeper who's role is to make sure everyone finds their way out. 
 

 

Ladew Gardens

Topiary Gardens
One of the oldest topiary gardens in the new world, the Ladew Gardens can be found off interstate 95 near Baltimore, Maryland. They were created by Harvey S. Ladew in the early 20th century and cover about 22 acres. 

Topiary Gardens
A lover of gentlmen's sports, the garden depicts many scenes of foxes and dogs running across lawns next to riders and horses hot in pursuit. A huge swimming pool is surrounded by topiary hedges in wave form and topped with the likeness of swimming swans. The life-like visage of these earthly sculptures is quite a sight to behold. 
 

 

Longwood Gardens

Topiary Gardens
Longwood Gardens were designed to be one of the most incredible American estates by Geoffrey Jellicoe, the founder and first president of the International Federation of Landscape Architects.

Topiary Gardens
The grounds were sold and resold a few times during the beginning of the 20th century, until they were bought by a man named Du Pont, who was a world traveller and adored the European style of gardening. Guided by these ideals, he created a garden of yews in various geometric and animal shapes. The Longwood Gardens can be found about 30 miles from Philadelphia.  
 

 

Green Animals Topiary Garden

Topiary Gardens
This is one garden children simply adore.  Following the European Renaissance tradition of creating furry shapes in clipped trees and shrubs, this garden hosts a large variety of cute critters. Visitors to this lovely garden in Portmouth, Rhode Island, can enjoy a breathtaking view of Narragansett Bay while the children run around the teddy bears, elephant, ostrich, unicorn and 75 other animal-shaped fauna. 

Topiary Gardens
These grounds belonged originally to Thomas Brayton, a very rich man, whose gardener started experimenting with shaping the topiary forms in the first decades of the 20th century. In 1940, Brayton's daughter Alice took over and called it 'The Green Animals Garden'.  Every year, a special Green Animals Children's Party is held, for the delight of hundreds of lucky children. 
 

 

Lotusland

Topiary Gardens
This garden is not your average grounds. It was created in 1941 by Ganna Walska, a Polish opera singer with a famous temper who hated anything that was 'normal'. Other than having many husbands, she also added some special features to her garden, among them is the blue slag glass that was recycled from the Los Angeles spring water factory. 

Topiary Gardens
The plant collection in this garden is something to amaze: Over 3000 different specimens. Visitors wishing to see the garden today must make a special appointment, because even though it is a public garden, it is located inside a private residental area. 
 

 

Pearl Fryar

Topiary Gardens
Found in Bishopville, South Carolina, this ongoing creation of modern gardening was created in the 1980s by Pearl Fryar after he had rescued trees and shrubs from local nurseries. These sick plants were collected like abandoned orphans in this garden to nurse them back to health. After the sick trees and shrubs flourished, he began shaping them into various abstract forms. 
 
Topiary Gardens
Unlike most topiary gardens whose shapes are usually made of a few types of plants, the topiary shapes here come from over 50 different kinds of trees and shrubs. Today, Fryar lectures all across the nation about the subject of topiary gardens and his garden has received fame and acclaim around the world.  
 

Frank R.

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