Thursday, December 24, 2015

Christmas at Longwood Gardens, Part I

Longwood Gardens is considered to be one of the most beautiful gardens in the country, and after years of hearing about it, I finally managed to visit - specifically to see the magnificent Christmas displays. Although its location in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania (near Philadelphia and Wilmington) made for a relatively long solo day trip from the Washington area, the time and effort were well worth it. My visit was lengthy and colorful enough that I will have share photos and observations from my adventure over at least two blog posts! With over 1,000 acres, Longwood Gardens offers visitors a great deal to explore no matter what the season, though I'm having a difficult time imaging anything being more spectacular than what I saw!
Thanks to its magnificent seasonal flower, Christmas tree and light displays, Longwood is exceedingly popular in December, thus if you plan on visiting then, I recommend reading the tips on their website. For example, weekdays are much less crowded than weekends, and tickets are also less expensive then ($20 vs. $27). I was glad to visit on a Thursday when at times I had certain areas almost to myself, though as dusk fell the gardens did become increasingly more crowded.
Greenest greens & reddest reds!
I began my visit during daylight and in the gigantic conservatory. With many different areas and gardens, these greenhouses were impressive in their variety and beauty. In this post I will focus on the Christmas-y aspects. Due to the bright sunny day (and my lack of skill with my relatively new camera!), many of the photos are not as spectacular as the actual sights were. And due my lack of recent free time, I won't write much more, but will share many photos.
Pussy willow lights - love!
Gorgeous ballroom.
After spending a fair amount of time in the conservatory, I stopped in the cafeteria for lunch (relatively expensive, but also quite tasty) then continued my explorations outdoors.

One Christmas tree was decorated with edible ornaments for the woodland animals, and the decorations replenished by the Longwood gardeners as needed. I particularly loved the beautiful bird bath!

Longwood has three "treehouses," which I absolutely adored. 
Enormous wreath made entirely of pine cones!
Christmas tree of pine cones
I loved these diamond-shaped wreaths!
May you and yours have a very merry Christmas! (And stay tuned for part II!)

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