Oklahoma Garden Festival
I wanted to tell you all about getting to hear Derek Fell speak today at the
garden festival. He
has written over 60 books on gardening - around 2.5 million copies in
circulation. He talked on Monet's gardens.
I loved the talk but
as much from an artist point of view as a gardeners. I even bought both
He talked about using white in small pieces instead of a huge clump. He
said a big clump looks like a hole where small pieces add to the brightness
of the overall picture. He had a picture of purple iris,
lavender iris and a very few white iris that was beautiful. Monet had the
most labor intensive gardens. He told how Monet didn't pay any of his
gardeners. They were allowed to take the excess cuttings and plants to the
local farmer's markets and flower shops to sell. That became their wages.
The slide show alone was worth the drive home in the rain.
He told that if you are ever able to go to Monet's gardens you should
write for a pass to be able to go on a Monday. Artist and photographers
are granted a pass if you write ahead and ask. Since there are over 600,000
visitors a year it is great to go on Mondays when very few are there.
He talked about the use of Hot colors and Cool colors like you do in a
painting ... the hot colors up front and the cool color in the distance to
fool the eye into thinking the garden is much further away. He said he used
the straight beds with the walking paths beside them to show perspective
again as in a painting. He loved single petal flowers for the translucent
quality of them. He loved to have flowers not only low but high up to draw
the eye up. Monet loved lace and tried to use flowering vines to look like
lace on the trellis. He hated variegated plants ... thought they looked
I loved this quote:
Hybrids give the garden drama!
Reseeders give the garden soul!
He told of the Americana Rose bred by Pyle from America. He talked like it
is one of the best roses but you can't find it anywhere today.
He was a great speaker telling great stories from his travels to Monet's
gardens. He told of how the gardens were restored and how Monet's step
daughter Blanche loved the gardens. It was she that kept the house,
paintings and gardens from being destroyed during the war. I did take notes
and there are several more and I could go on and on but I think you can
tell I loved it all.
I hated to leave... knowing it will be another year before it is time to go
again. For those of you that live close to Buck county Pennsylvania Fell
invited everyone to his own gardens in Pennsylvania which are open to the
public on some of the major
where it is raining but turning to ice... 30 degrees right now.
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