CONTACT US


Headquarters:
Garden Club of North Carolina, Inc.
P. O. Box 33520
Raleigh, NC 27636-3520
919-834-0686

 

Physical Location:
J.C. Raulston Arboretum
4415 Beryl Road
Raleigh, NC

 

Email: theGCofNC1@aol.com
Office Hours:
Monday - Thursday 9:00-5:00

 

For Website Submissions:
See the Website Submission
Rules in Members Only
Contact:
Marcia Loudon, Website Chairman
gcnc.web@gmail.com
919-338-3957

Elizabethan Gardens

Link to Elizabethan Gardens Website

http://elizabethangardens.org


Admission Required. (Members admitted FREE). Join us as we celebrate the return of our Great Gates- recently restored to provide decades of service to The Elizabethan Gardens. These Gates once hung at the French Embassy in Washington DC (read more history here) and were given to the gardens as a gift. Years of wear and the Outer Banks environment damaged the historic iron. With assistance from the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau, Outer Banks Community Foundation, The Percy W. and Elizabeth G. Meekins Charitable Trust and our patrons we have been able to restore these iconic symbols of our gardens. Join us for fanfare and refreshments to celebrate the gates. >more

RSVP with this link or call 252-473-3234.


Shhh…History Spoken Here
 
(Manteo, N.C., July 7, 2017) –  Be very quiet and if you allow your imagination to be your guide, you can travel back almost all the way to “days of old, when knights were bold, and everyone had a chamber maid” just by walking through the Great Gates at Elizabethan Gardens.
 
Recently restored to their original condition and re-hung at the Gardens, the antique Great Gates have witnessed the comings and goings of the elite for more than a century – perhaps even more than two centuries!
 
There’s something magical about walking through the Gates,” said Carl Curnutte, Elizabethan Gardens executive director. “You instinctively know that they are old and that they have witnessed many interesting tales over the decades – perhaps even over centuries.”
 
The Gates are made of wrought iron that was hand-forged by a blacksmith using an anvil to hammer each piece into the needed shape. The elaborate designs and functions of decorative wrought iron made it an item owned only by the wealthy and often was considered more art than utilitarian.
 
The location of where the Great Gates were first hung is still a mystery, but the detail and cost most assuredly point to a “monied past”. Perhaps their purpose was to keep riff raff out of the private estates of European nobility. Or they might have been – like now – gates to keep wildlife out of the elaborate Elizabethan-era gardens.
 
Clues about the estimated time of their construction can be found in the design which is without welds, using only rivets, screws and collars. That seems to indicate that they were probably created somewhere between the 1700s and 1800s in continental Europe or the United Kingdom.
 
Ben Kastner of Intracoastal Iron and Metal Work company agrees with that estimate. “I’m basing that on similar gates at Airlie Gardens in Wilmington,” he said. 
 
Kastner brings a unique perspective to the art of restoration blacksmithing. Originally an underwater welder, he decided that he wanted to come aground and have the opportunity to be more creative. He began honing his blacksmithing skills and feed his creative side by learning design craft and blacksmithing at such places as Penland School of Craft.
 
Exactly when the gates arrived in the New World hasn’t yet revealed itself, but in the 1700s and 1800s, it was considered fashionable for the wealthy to import furniture, fabrics and even building accessories from Europe as a way to show off their wealth and worldliness.
 
But the history of the Great Gates can be tracked back to the early years of the last century. 
 
In 1910-1911, the gates were hung during the construction of a private residence for the lead paint tycoon, William Watson Lawrence in Washington, D.C. The home, designed by architect Jules Henri de Sibour, used a combination of Tudor and Jacobean styles.
 
The residence was sold in 1917 to John Hays Hammond, wealthy miner and friend to several presidents. Hammond lived in the home until his death after which it was sold it to the government of France in 1936. The building was converted to be used as the French Chancery with the embassy on the first floor and the ambassador’s quarters on the second. 
 
The Gates remained in use by all three owners of the property.
 
Oh, the stories the Gates could tell if empowered to share its memories. Who were those who walked in and out of the building during WWI, Prohibition and WWII? How many styles of dresses rustled their way in and out as they attended grand parties of the elite politicians and the wealthy who hobnobbed with them?
 
How many tears were there running down cheeks of embassy employees who had just read cables telling them that their homeland had been taken over by the Germans?
 
And then, around 1952, C. Douglas Dillion, American diplomat and politician who served as U.S. Ambassador to France (1953-57) and Secretary of the Treasurer (1961-65) gifted the gates to the Elizabethan Gardens after they had been removed from the Chancery during extensive renovations. Since then, in 1985, a new embassy compound was built and the building has returned to its original use as a private residence for the ambassador.
 
The Great Gates stood guard from their place in the brick wall while the garden was slowly planned, planted and pruned into shape. When the gardens formally opened in 1960, the gates had been patiently been waiting for visitors to once again walk through their opening.
 
Sixty-five years after moving the gates to North Carolina’s Outer Banks, coastal weather was leaving its mark on the magnificent gates, but the expert craftsmanship of Kastner has restored them to their original elegant style while adding modern techniques to ensure that they hold their beauty for decades to come.
 Funding for the restoration project came, in part, from the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau and Outer Banks Community Foundation.

RESCHEDULED EVENT

Photos of Our Great Gate Restoration Progress

(Restoration by Intracoastal Iron. Photos courtesy of Joann Small)

 

 

Admission Required. (Members admitted FREE) Join us as we celebrate the return of our Great Gates- recently restored to provide decades of service to The Elizabethan Gardens. These Gates once hung at the French Embassy in Washington DC and were given to the gardens as a gift. Years of wear and the Outer Banks environment damaged the historic iron. With assistance from the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau, Outer Banks Community Foundation and our patrons we have been able to restore these iconic symbols of our gardens. Join us for fanfare and refreshments to celebrate the gates.


COLONIST BRICK PROJECT

Thanks to these North Carolina Garden Clubs who have sponsored a colonist brick to date (6/4/17).

We are almost there! We are very close to being able to have a brick engraved for each of the 117 colonists.

If your club hasn’t sponsored a colonist, there is still time.

Ahoskie and Lake Gaston Garden

Audubon Garden Club

Azalea Garden Club

Bermuda Run Garden Club

Cape Fear Garden Club

Carolyn T. High Garden Club

Cary Garden Club

Charlotte Council of Garden Clubs

Croasdaile Garden Club

Davidson Garden Club

Daylily Garden Club

Dig-A-Bit Garden Club

Down to Earth Garden Club

Dunes of Dare Garden Club

Emerald Isle Garden Club

Englewood Garden Club Rocky Mount

Evergreen Garden Club

Fayetteville Garden Club

Field & Stream

Flower Power Garden Club

Fremont Garden Club

Garden Club of New River

Garden Study Club

GC Council of Winston Salem and Forsyth

Goldsboro Garden Club

Green Thumb Garden Club

Green Valley Garden Club

Greenleaf Garden Club

Hoe and Hope Garden Club

Homestead Heights Garden Club

King of Spades Garden Club

La Grange Garden Club

Lady Banks Garden Club

Lafayette Ladyslippers Garden Club

Lake Trace Garden Club

Little Gardens Garden Club

Loblolly Garden Club

Long Bay Garden Club

Longleaf Garden Club

Modern Gardeners Garden Club

Monroe Garden Club

Monroe Garden Club

Nathanel Green Garden Club

New Bern Garden Club

Old Salem Garden Club

Perennial Garden Club

Pine Knoll Shores Garden Club

Pioneer Garden Club

Potpourri Garden Club

Raleigh Garden Club

Roanoke Island Garden Club

Rocky Mount Garden Club

Sylva Garden Club

The Green Thumb Garden Club

The Scotch Gardeners

Town & Country Garden Club Eden

Town & Country Garden Club Fayetteville

Town & Country Garden Club Whiteville

Town and Country Garden Club Durham

Town and Country Garden Club Winston-Salem

Trellis Garden Club

Trent Woods Garden Club

Troutman Garden Club

Twin City Garden Club

Two Green Thumbs Garden Club

Village Garden Club

Village Home and Garden Club

Warsaw Garden Club

Washington Garden Club

Westridge Garden Club

Westwood Garden Club

Whiteville Garden Club

Wildwood Garden Club

Wolf, SR, Gerald E.

Woodland Garden Club

Yadkin Valley Garden Club

KNOW A GARDEN CLUB THAT MAY WANT TO SPONSOR A BRICK? FOLLOW THIS LINK.


Hats off to Washington Garden Club and Roanoke Island Garden Clubs who each presented The Elizabethan Gardens with donations.

Wash GCPictured here are (L-R) Linda Davenport, Vice Chair of The Elizabethan Gardens Board of Governors; Sandra Snapp, past President of Washington Garden Club; Lou Ellen Flowers, Chairman of The Elizabethan Gardens Board of Governors; and Gail Reynolds and Sarah Johns members of The Elizabethan Gardens Board of Governors.

roanoke island gcPictured here is Roanoke Island Garden Club representative (Left center) Donna Presgrave presenting a check to  (Right center) Lou Ellen Flowers, Chairman of The Elizabethan Gardens Board of Governors; For the presentation (L-R) are also Sandra Snapp, past President of The Elizabethan Gardens; Linda Davenport, Vice Chair of The Elizabethan Gardens Board of Governors; and also Gail Reynolds and Sarah Johns members of The Elizabethan Gardens Board of Governors.

yoga EGYOGA IN THE GARDENS
“Naturally Good”

Only $8 for Members!

Join instructor Chelsea Quattrone for an invigorating Vinyasa-style yoga practice suitable for everyone in the beauty and tranquility of The Elizabethan Gardens. Breathe deeply and move meditatively under the blue sky and among the lush green trees.

Quattrone is a graduate of the Amalam School of Yoga 220 hour RYT training; Chelsea’s classes are joyful and healing experiences appropriate for all levels of fitness. She is a certified hypnotherapist and fitness professional who will inspire you to take this time to listen to your inner voice and truly explore and celebrate your body.

Classes run Wednesdays at 9:30am on the tree-shaded Great Lawn.
The 90-minute class is open to the general public.
Non-member $15.00 per person.
Member price is $8.00 per person.
Participants can arrive as early as 9:00am.
Classes run each Wednesday thru August 21.
Subject to weather-related cancellations, or relocation to Odom Hall (call ahead for details).

Sign up for Yoga by calling 252-473-3234.

 

Storybook Thursdays
On Thursdays, its’ story time in The Gardens. We invite children of

all ages, accompanied by an adult, to gather in air-conditioned Odom Hall and enjoy a garden-inspired story, snack, and hands-on activity.
>more

QUEEN’S PICK FOR MAY
Butterfly Bush (purple or white)

butterfly bush

Just getting into butterfly gardening?
Then get a butterfly bush!

Butterfly bushes (Buddleia davidii) are beloved by both hummingbirds and butterflys. They bloom mid July up to frost with abundant lilac-remiscent floral spikes.

These plants love zones 5-9. They often die to the ground during winter and sprout anew in May or June. Butterfly Bushes are deer resistant and drought tolerant.



QUEENS PICKjpeg-2Kalanchoe – These plants are cultivated as ornamental houseplants and rock or succulent garden plants. This plant is known to the Chinese as “thousands and millions of red and purple” (萬紫千紅), and is commonly purchased during the Chinese New Year for decorative purposes. (from Wikipedia)


 

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