I had the great pleasure of visiting Dumbarton Oaks in Washington DC this time last year. For those of you possibly headed that way it is a must see. The Federal style home was originally built in 1801 but began it’s transformation into it’s current state in the 1920’s. During that time the home was purchased by Mr. and Mrs. Robert Bliss. They renovated the home extensively and worked with famed Landscape Architect Beatrix Farrand to transform the surrounding grounds into the stunning garden that it is now.
In 1940 the couple turned ownership over to Mr. Bliss’ alma mater Harvard. Dumbarton Oaks is now in operation as a research library with a focus on Byzantine History, Landscape and Horticultural studies and Pre-Colombian History. The gardens are open to the public, and well worth seeing. I was particularlly interested in the use of Forsythia trailing over the sides of the brick wall and steps (1st picture). In the second two photographs you can see the strength in using a well defined sight line.