Winterthur, Delaware, legacy of Henry Francis du Pont, 1880-1969, American
More diverse and in a more complex design than other gardens in Henry Francis du Pont’s schema, Sycamore Hill comprises fragrant, shaded allees in June and early July.
The pivot of this concentration is an old sycamore tree which stands in the heel of an ‘L’ shaped formation of greenways.
A large tulip poplar, sitting on the edge of an escarpment anchors one edge of the L – its horizontal leg – behind a gazebo.
On the left behind the gazebo, a tulip poplar and on the right a Western catalpa
The horizontal L is wide and harbours a significant number of trees, both native and non-native which provide wonderful shade amidst the fragrance of flowering bushes and trees.
Behind the sycamore, streaming up the vertical leg of the L are bushes and a stand of kousa (Japanese) dogwood which bloom in June.
A view looking up the vertical leg of the L from under a mature kousa (Japanese) dogwood
and early July, both greenways are filled with flowering trees and bushes.
The predominant colour is white, here and there enlivened with red, pinks, lavender.
Bushes of white cottoneaster salacifolia
Styrax Obassia (Fragrant Snowbell)
Glenn Dale hybrid azalea behind weigelia
American Fringe tree framing a kousa (Japanese) dogwood tree
American Fringe Tree. Fragrant at certain times in its flowering. Distinct but not overwhelming.
American Fringe (Chionanthus Virginicus) shedding flowers
Kousa (Japanese) dogwood whose dense flowers seem to have made it more popular than native dogwoods
The flowers of the Garland Butterfly Bush (Buddleia Alternifolia)
Flowers of the bush, Fragrant Abelia, yet to open this year in mid-May
Flowers of the bush, Fragrant Abelia, in early June
Flowering of a native dogwood: Cornus alternifolia
The flower of the Oyama Magnolia tree
Looking over the hedge to open fields at the back of the horizontal L
Tea viburnum in two colours
The flower of the American Yellowwood (Cladrastis kentukea)
The flower of the bush, Philadelphus (mock orange), native to the Americas but not only
white mountain laurel (Kalmia latifolia)
When you leave Sycamore Hill, you walk some way into the park or down to the museum before you feel that you are beyond the magnetic field of this immense tree, the old sycamore,
accompanied now by its garden of many flowers.