Sunday, March 18, 2007

Bellingrath Gardens.............

Entrance to Bellingrath Gardens

While we were at Orange Beach, AL, we decided to go to Mobile to the Bellingrath Gardens, well, actually it is located at Theodore, AL. It is 65 acres of beautifully landscaped grounds.

Walter Duncan Bellingrath arrived in Mobile in 1903 to bottle Coca-Cola for a sales region stretching out a hundred miles. He married his secretary, Bessie Morse, in 1906 and five years later bought her a spacious home in one of Mobile's most elegant neighborhoods. She loved flowers and antiques and her home has a showplace.

Her husband later bought the property that was to become Bellingrath. They planted truckloads of camellia, azaleas and after a European trip seeing the beautiful gardens, they returned home, to continue creating a showplace. Bessie was known to buy flowers, antiques and other things from people who were going through hard times at a price high above their value.

They had wells drilled but because it had high sulphur content, they installed garden fountains and even made a lake named Mirror Lake. The estate was opened to the public in 1935.
The North side of the home (I think)
Mary Jo and Betty

One of the Staghorn Ferns in the Conservatory

South view of the home

The home was constructed of salvaged brick from an 1852 home in Mobile. Three guest's suites, three dining room, large kitchen and butler's pantry, six full baths, three half baths, drawing room, pantries for crystal, silver, china are just some of the rooms.

One of the many fountain and reflecting pools

A beautiful bed of flowering Kale

Flowering Cabbage


One variety of Camellia

One of the lawn areas and drive ways

One of the most beautiful views of the mediterranean influenced style home.

Another beautiful picture of the fountain and pool.
These were just a few of the pictures taken.....There is a chapel, a Boehm Porcelain Gallery, a Chinese Garden, a humongous rose garden, etc. This was a winter visit and I'm sure in the spring and summer it is a beauty to behold. It was pretty even in the winter with the bulbs, and winter flower beds doing their part...........
Another posting, we'll go on the riverboat ride on the Fowl River which is an estuary...........


Susie said...

What beautiful photos. Those gardens must have been such a joy to visit!
I have two large staghorn ferns growing in my patio. I think they're beautiful and so unusual.

Anonymous said...

Takes my breath away. Sis 3

Tina Leigh said...

Betty I wish you could have seen it when the azelas were blooming!! BEAUTIFUL!! Also it was MUCH prettier before Hurricane Frederic hit in 1979. There use to be huge oak trees around the house & all over the property. Did you feed the catfish off of the bridge? Brings back good memories for me.

RoseMary said...

What a beautiful place to visit. I love going to gardens, especially when they are centered around an old home. Thanks for sharing your special day.

Melanie said...

Gorgeous pictures!

I have eaten at Lambert's in Foley and the other one they have in Missouri. Both were great.

I have been through Fitzgerald many times- very close to my old stomping grounds (Albany and Cordele!)

It is a beautiful town with lots of charm. :>)

dot said...

Betty, your pictures are beautiful!
Tony and I went there 2 yrs ago but we didn't hit it right for the azaleas. They were just starting to open. One year I was there when the azaleas and dogwoods were both blooming and it was gorgeous!

Reflection Through The Seasons said...

Good Morning Betty...
What a delightful lot of pictures you have treated us to. The gardens are gorgeous and Oh what joy to have such an abundance of flowers so early in the year.

So nice to see the picture of you and Mary Jo in the conservatory too.

The gardens created by Walter Duncan Bellingrath are a truly magnificent legacy for future generations to enjoy. Marion

weirdbunny said...

What a beautiful place to visit. I always plant out the flowering cabages and kale they mke the boarders so pretty .... on eof my favourite.

Candy said...

Those are gorgeous pictures!

HORIZON said...

OK- Just sent you a post there and lost it -arghh!
What a beautiful place to visit Betty. Wanted to say thank you for the lovely tour- can only imagine what this place would look like in Summer- are you planning to go back then?
l would just love to live here but would need some help for sure in the garden-lol
Lovely- thanks again

annewithane65 (Kim) said...

Wow, what a lovely place to visit Betty. Thank you for sharing your pictures with us!

MariaJ said...

On a cloudy and rainy day like here in Finland this post lifts my spirit! Thank you for these lovely garden photos. I love all those pools, nice buildings and flowers....ooooh!

Rhoda said...

Oh, what beautiful pictures, Betty. I've heard of Bellingrath & will have to make a point to go there some day. I love gardens & old homes & that looks spectacular. You really captured the feel so well in your pics. thanks for taking us along!

Southern Hospitality

Tracy said...

How pretty. It's getting warmer here, but I am very anxious to have all of my flowers blooming again.

Carolanne said...

What an interesting home!
Hey, I used to have a Camillia bush like that outside my office window in my last home - that's about the only similarity though!

Christie Belle said...

How gorgeous, it would be so nice to visit this beautiful place. All the flower pictures are giving me a case of spring fever:)

Barbara said...

Just been readingthrough some of your older posts and found this interesting seeing a Southern US garden.