Inspired Garden

The grand gardens of the early 1900s inspired Tarp Farm’s landscape design. Landscape designer Carter van Dyke leveled and trimmed the farm’s sloping site to provide a platform for the house and landscape, shaping a formal plan with garden rooms and terraced overlooks. The whole garden is planted for year-round interest, but within that scheme individual areas have their moment of stardom: The rill garden, a stone-banked water channel shown here, is flanked by perennial borders that are at their best in late summer, while June sees the rose garden in full-blown beauty. Early spring is graced by the flowering crab apple allée, followed by the azalea walk. Boxwood and formal structure keep the interest going through the snowy winter months, "and even in the kitchen garden we plant Brussels sprouts and other winter hardies to keep it attractive," explains Sue.

Water Rill

The long, highly ornamental water rill and the greenhouse are on the upper terrace.

Swimming Pool

Water features unify the garden levels. The swimming pool and loggia are on the lower terrace.


Staircases at either end of the loggia connect the upper and lower garden terraces.

Lovely Loggia

The swimming pool loggia is an undercroft of the rill terrace above it.

Homeowner Portrait

Mike and Sue Wert, with Zoom and Gideon, take a break on a bench in the middle of the rill garden borders.

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Horticultural Healing

A couple builds a practical garden for outdoor living

Written by Ethne Clarke
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Rich Pomerantz


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