“In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: It Goes On.”
Robert Frost

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Visiting Noerenberg Gardens

As promised, here is my post on the lovely Noerenberg Gardens.  I visited a couple of weeks ago.  It was one of those perfect evenings, just a whisper of a breeze, warm but low humidity. It's one of those days where I'm so happy to live here in Minnesota and it makes the winters easier to get through!

This was an impromptu visit, so all I had with me was my Galaxy phone.  Some photos were cropped down, but others I left as is because they show the true beauty of the garden design.

The garden starts with winding paved paths that take you around a circular garden.  The center is grass with beautiful flowers and shrubs surrounding it.  The large white flowering shrub is a variety of PG hydrangea. Unlike the southern hydrangeas, it doesn't die back to the ground in the winter and still blooms in our northern climate.

Noerenberg Memorial Gardens is known for its tranquility and spectacular beauty. Situated along the shore of Crystal Bay on Lake Minnetonka, Noerenberg is widely regarded as one of the finest formal gardens in Minnesota. Among its blend of perennials, annuals, trees, shrubs, and vines the garden features ornamental shade trees and a stand of conifers, an extensive day lily collection, and "Northern Lights" azaleas.

 A close-up of some purple coneflowers...

Cultivated and native plants grow together in several of the flower beds.  The bright pink flower in the photo above is called Swamp Smartweed and is growing next to our lake shore at home. It actually can have its feet in water for a considerable amount of time. This makes it an ideal plant for a rain garden.

 Some lovely Russian Sage in front of a PG Hyrdrangea shrub...

I thought this was an especially pretty combination, white cone-flowers, pale pink nicotiana and some unknown grasses and bright pink flowers...

 Blue Love in a Mist...

A lovely trellis/pergola with gorgeous flowers planted on each side. 

And now for a bit of history...
Grain Belt Brewery founder Frederick Noerenberg and his family built their estate on the shore of Lake Minnetonka in 1890. Influenced by English Landscape Style, the property featured tiered rose beds and impeccably manicured lawns. As world travelers with an appreciation for natural artifacts, the family accumulated an assortment of natural specimens that appeared in the garden, including a collection of trees, plant materials and rocks.

On the opposite side of the garden you can see the gazebo 
which sits right on the edge of Lake Minnetonka.

 The columns mark the site where the original home stood.

 My husband and brother in-law relax and take in the view from the gazebo.

The gazebo has a somewhat Asian flair.  The design was 
influenced by the owners extensive travel abroad. 

 A few lake views from the gazebo...

Lora Noerenberg Hoppe, one of the five Noerenberg children, acted as chief horticulturist on the gardens for a number of years. She bequeathed the estate to the Park District when she passed away in 1972. At her direction, the home was razed and the estate was transformed to a garden for the public’s enjoyment. 

This has to be one of the most spectacular public gardens I have ever visited.
I hope you enjoyed your tour!  

Next time I think we need to get back to some cute vintage. 
I'll be seeing you all soon!

history source