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Thoughts & Musings by Sandra Visnapuu

Skilled & Sculpted Scissorhands

Topiary; an art form in the garden has come and gone in fashion but for those of us ‘in the business’ it has never left its pinnacle of importance and I’m delighted it’s enjoying a resurgence. Nowadays properties with a smaller square footage can gain a sense of grandeur by adding topiary. Boundaries are then clearly defined in a way that doesn’t speak of no trespassing and the illusion created, whether geometric or fanciful will bring out the often-over-looked individuality of its owners.

 Black Barn Farm

Black Barn Farm

A simple example would be when passing a house in the deer infested Del Monte Forest in Pebble Beach. I had an ‘LOL’ moment as outside sat a precision cut sculpted deer topiary. The owner, a surgeon had commissioned this; and the clever volunteers had created it from a native shrub so it could not be enjoyed by the normally devilishly deer devourers!

A few weeks ago, I visited Black Barn Farm in Richmond, MA – which happened to be on a ‘Garden Conservancy’ tour. It was a 2.5-hour journey but worth it for the topiaries. I was thrilled with the owners’ expertise and knowledgeable subject choices.

It was a beautiful morning so I took along my Scottish Terrier - for the ride. However, he got more than he anticipated when the hosts (also dog lovers) invited him into their garden, as they would not hear of him waiting in the car. Their female Pit Bull, athletic and gorgeous wore him out with her playfulness. She was gentle, sweet and learned to the young Scot; the joy from a garden tour was more than my Finlay could pantheon… he slept all the way home!