One sunny day last summer, Raymond and I were on one of our “let’s explore new roads” driving tours of the Queensborough area. We turned off Highway 7 onto one such road, and kept going till the road came to an end. And there, kind of tucked away into the middle of nowhere, between woodland and the Black River, we were astonished to come upon a sizeable, attractive home surrounded by huge and absolutely gorgeous gardens – complete with pond and gazebo. It was magical.
Who lives there? we wondered. Who has created that astounding garden here in the rocky country “north of 7”?
It wasn’t long before we found out. The homeowner and gardener is Pauline Weber, whom I have written about before; in addition to being supremely talented on the garden front, Pauline is an accomplished photographer, and we were pleased to buy a couple of her photos at last fall’s Tweed and Area Studio Tour. (And here is information on this year’s Studio Tour, which takes place Sept. 28 and 29.)
And speaking of tours, have I got a tour for you! One that features Pauline’s glorious garden, no less. It is the Tweed Garden Tour, and it takes place (rain or shine) on Saturday, July 6, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Here’s the scoop (thanks to Pauline for this):
“This is your chance to see an inspiring variety of gardens – a country riverside setting, a garden with myriads of day lilies and Asiatic lilies, rare perennials and trees, aquatic environments, unique container plantings, a small urban garden, organic gardens, and gardens surrounding a log cabin.” There will be eight private gardens and three municipal gardens.
Pauline told me in an email, “They will be an inspiration to local gardeners who make allowances for local wildlife (did you know red squirrels love tulip bulbs?), Laurentian shield rock, and Centre Hastings winters.” But I suspect the gardens will be of interest to people from far beyond the Centre Hastings area as well. (Like, say, Montreal.)
And not only will there be lovely gardens to explore (and their keepers to talk about their work and answer questions); there will also be entertainment. In the gardens will be painters, authors, flower-arranging demonstrations, a master gardener to answer gardening questions and: live music! The Pickled Chicken String Band (you really have to love that name) will be playing bluegrass, gospel, folk, blues and country in the gazebo or around the pond at Pauline’s garden.
Does this sound like a great day or what? It’s the kind of thing that appeals both to people who themselves love to garden and are good at it – a chance for them to pick up tips and ideas, and compare notes with the gardeners – and to gardening neophytes like me, who need every bit of inspiration and help we can get.
And get this: it’s all for a good cause! The tour is sponsored by the Friends of the Tweed Library, and the proceeds will be used for good stuff like an audio system, audio books and non-fiction materials for young people at the Tweed Public Library.
Here’s what you need to do: If you’re in the Tweed area, you can pick up tickets (passports with a map and detailed descriptions of each garden; until June 15 they are two for $30, after that $20 each) at the Tweed News, The Food Company, and the Tweed Library. If you’re farther afield (or even if you’re not), you can order tickets by emailing Pauling Weber at firstname.lastname@example.org, or phone 613-478-9948.
And I hope to see you in one of those beautiful gardens!