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We began working our way back to the Visitor Center going first to watch the fountains and then walking through the topiary and rose garden. By now we were totally on plant overload. Keep in mind that it was really warm, high 80’s and humid not at all the type of weather we expected in October, it was very draining. We spent about two hours here but if we hadn’t been so warm we could easily have spent at least half a day.There is a café and restaurant and you are not allowed to carry in either food or drink, so plan accordingly. Longwood is open all year and entrance is $16 for adults. It is wheelchair accessible and we saw many people using them as well as motorized scooters.There were several areas that we never got to visit and I can well imagine that every season would make the garden an entirely different place to visit.Rt. 1Kennett Sq. Pa
Results 1-5of 5 Reviews
October 17, 2007
From journal Columbus Day in Chateau Valley
June 9, 2005
In truth, Longwood owes more to French and Italian gardens than to English ones. There is a cottage-style "Idea Garden," one of several distinct gardens that Longwood’s owner and principal designer, Pierre DuPont, created. But DuPont’s main passion seems to have been water. Longwood features an Italian Water Garden, two lakes, a Japanese-inspired "Eye of Water," an Italianate bell tower beside a waterfall, and, most dramatically, a fountain garden equipped with lights and music. The fountains are veritable geysers, shooting 10,000 gallons of water up to 130 feet into the air. No matter that there was no ready water supply at Longwood Garden. The über-wealthy DuPont had the money, passion, and know-how to "make it so." The result still pleases today.
Another of DuPont’s passions resulted in the immense conservatory, the largest I’ve ever seen. Doubtless he was influenced by such late-19th-century wonders as the Crystal Palace and the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew. Touring this world-beneath-glass can take an avid gardener a full day; in fact, the one drawback at Longwood is there is simply too much to see in a single day.
Though the garden DuPont created grew incrementally rather than from a single grand plan, the total effect is not fragmentary. Instead, the underlying formal elements (topiary gardens, geometrical lines and parterres, and neatly clipped semicircles of yew hedges) mesh throughout with natural forms – the shapes of trees and shrubs combined with such sympathetic pairings as rounded clumps of blue catmint and pink peonies contrasted with the pointed shapes of iris and arborvitae. Curved lines and long vistas leading to focal points further guide the eye.
Since DuPont’s time, Longwood has been run by a trust, which does an admirable job of staying true to his vision, yet making the garden appealing to the general public. I particularly commend the efforts made to ensure the garden is handicapped accessible. A veritable fleet of "Rascal" scooters is at the disposal of those who might need them, free of charge. Shady benches and other lovely nooks beckon the foot weary throughout the garden.
My mother, who has had health problems in recent years, demurred when I suggested she use one of the scooters. Instead, we gently ambled at her pace over the central core of the garden and through the main sections of the conservatory. I found this visit, perhaps because of the serene pace (but I suspect more because of her loving company), my most enjoyable yet.
Visit Longwood and create your own seasonal garden memories. You won’t be disappointed.
From journal The Brandywine Valley: Beauty & Grace
August 4, 2002
From journal Philadelphia, PA and environs
Cinnaminson, New Jersey
April 12, 2001
There is certainly the influence of Versailles gardens in the way that trees and bushes are shaped, in the arches made of roses, in the cascading fountains. You can come here any month of the year and see the beauty of the seasonal plants and flowers. But the best things in the garden are the cascading fountains. You can see the new fountains joining the others with the streams of water in different directions, creating almost a surreal impression, as if you are not in the 21st century.
The gardens have exotic flowers in bloom throughout the year in the Conservatory. It has a large collection of palm trees, cacti, orchids, bonsais, and seasonal flowers. But the most beautiful part of the gardens for me is the ponds with water lilies full of different colors and shapes. The garden in front of the Conservatory has a large rosarium and trees shaped as birds, animals and geometrically. To the right there is a small garden with a tower. If you walk up the stairs to the top of the tower, you’ll be able to see most of the estate, and realize the grandeur of its size.
There is a gift shop at the entrance and you can get a map of the gardens when buying the tickets.
From journal Philadelphia - city of culture, Part II
December 17, 2000
The conservatory is best appreciated in the middle of winter, when the freezing weather outside is contrasted with the lush lawns and summer conditions inside. The banana trees are always a source of fascination with children. (Bananas grow on trees??)
Around Christmastime, it is a must to check out the light display. Come at night and see the fountain water light show and the conservatory decked out in Christmas regalia.
From journal Brandywine Valley Arts