My Great Outdoors: Bev's Inspiring Country Garden

My Great Outdoors: Bev's Inspiring Country Garden

Cambria Bold
Jun 23, 2009

Name: Bev
Location: Sperryville, VA
Type of space: Country garden
We had the great pleasure of spending a long weekend at Bev's Virginia farm (named Buckeye Farm) a couple weekends ago, and fell in love with her gorgeous, 5-acre garden. Bev and her husband Andy have lived at Buckeye Farm for 15 years, and in that time they've cultivated a beautiful, diverse outdoor oasis — both well-maintained and wild— with an organic vegetable and fruit garden, a serious compost pile set out in the fields, and hundreds of flowers and plants bursting forth all around the property...

How she created it:
In 2002 Bev and Andy embarked on a big renovation, and it gave Bev the opportunity to reevaluate and redesign the garden. As she says, "Before the renovation, I tried to keep all garden areas equally well groomed, but I didn't succeed anywhere. Now I apply the 80:20 Rule to my landscape. I concentrate many of my maintenance hours on a few important areas, like the beds along the patios. In other areas, I find beauty in the wild, untended look. I find that if a few beds are well cultivated the whole garden seems to be intentional, and sufficiently under control... I try to focus on a few top goals, and not make myself crazy about the other details."

The garden winds around the property, opening and folding itself into new paths and the occasional resting spot. From the the porch you can see the cliffs behind the Hughs River and the Blue Ridge mountains. We had a wonderful dinner there on the Friday we were visiting, with lots of local wine and fresh greens from Bev's organic vegetable garden. Bev currently grows a wide variety of fruit and vegetables, including peach and apricot trees, blueberries, raspberries, asparagus, blackberries, arugula, garlic, potatoes, and dozens of tomato plants. As Bev says, "One of the nicest things about having a garden is sharing it. It's rewarding to have other people enjoy the bounty and even engage in the processes of planning and harvesting. In our gardens and our work lives, the rewards become richer when we find ways to share them."

We couldn't agree more! And we're so thankful to Bev and Andy for sharing their home with us!

Recommended store, site, product or resource?
Bev does as much as she can locally, but she does love Cook's Garden for her vegetable garden seeds, and White Flower Farm for some of the harder-to-find perennials.

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