In many ways, the formal garden is the heart of this place. And if not the heart, then at least the center, for it is here that most journeys eventually lead. Whether consciously or by chance, this is where we’re irrevocably drawn. Perhaps it’s in the design of the garden itself, as the outlying areas are unrestrained and evocative, but slowly swirl into more defined purpose, like an intricate narrative finally revealed.
From afar, the symmetrical layout suggest formality, but inside it’s pure plant madness. Plants careen and collide and offer up some strange bedfellows indeed. Kniphofia nuzzle prickly pear, crinum mix with boxwoods, daffodils flirt with bananas and a sense of the unexpected reins over all. Hedged yaupon hollies create borders and a cast concrete fountain covered by weeping bald cypress and passion flower is the center showpiece. This is a formal garden MFBG style: a southern cottage garden exploded out of bounds.