The Henry M. Flagler Garden
The Henry M. Flagler Garden
A collection of perennials, bulbs, woody plants, and blooming shrubs reward Flagler Garden visitors with an ever-changing palette of seasonal beauty. Hostas, azaleas and rhododendrons, crape myrtles, and a plethora of ornamentals border a grassy glen and adorn the landscape with multicolored blooms.
Nearby, dwarf Japanese maples skirt the Flagler Pavilion, an elevated portico whose outstanding container gardens, vine-covered trellises, and stone archways exude a collective charm of their own. Mature tree canopies offer summer shade, while splendid collection of ornamental grasses waves in the autumn breeze. Along the garden edge a pleasant stream meanders, nourishing plants and wildlife along its way. The Flagler Garden’s three-acre haven also includes a cool, quiet woodland and the romantic, larger-than-life sculpture Slow Dance.
The garden was a gift of the Janet and Lawrence Lewis Family through the Flagler Foundation. Given in memory of their uncle Henry Morrison Flagler, who was a partner in Standard Oil and well known for his success in East Coast railroad and real estate development. The Lewis’, lifelong residents of Richmond, sought opportunities to enhance their hometown and in 1990 supported the Flagler Garden as the first major project of the Garden’s master plan. Endowment gifts that further supported the project were provided by Elizabeth (Leazie) and Jonathan Bryan III; Elizabeth (Betty) and Robert Pratt, and Kit and William Pannill.
Charles B. Foster, grandson of Mr. and Mrs. Lewis, sculpted his artwork from North Carolina white granite. The sculpture was commissioned by Garland (Skip) S. Sydnor Jr. in honor of the Lewises for their generosity and in memory of his wife, Joyce Hunnicutt Sydnor. Mr. Sydnor served in various leadership capacities on the Garden’s Board of Directors and as acting director from August 1991 to February 1992. Mrs. Sydnor was co-founder of the Bloemendaal Society, the garden’s volunteer organization, and The Shop in the Garden (today’s Garden Shop), for which she worked diligently until her untimely death.
Joan Van Arnam Azalea Walk
The Joan Van Arnam Azalea Walk was created with an explosion of color in mind. Azaleas come in wide range of colors, growth forms and flower types. While walking through Azalea Walk garden visitors will start at one end of the color spectrum of this genus and pass through many different shades and flower forms.
Wander along the Woodland Walk in Flagler Garden and you will discover Dot’s Garden, bordered by a waterfall on its western edge, its entrance framed by a pair of handmade gates woven from the branches of a rhododendron. Dot’s Garden was created in memory of Garden Volunteer Dot Robelen, who touched many lives here during her 21 years of service. The Garden features plants chosen for their year-round appeal, and includes a bench sheltered by a natural cedar arbor, a secluded spot to sit in contemplation.
Learn more about how Dot’s Garden was inspired and created in Richmond Magazine.