This coming Sunday, July 6, 2014, is the Bonner County Gardeners Association Garden Tour. This year the eight featured gardens are all in Hope, Idaho. Hope, 18 miles east of Sandpoint on Hwy 200, is a place with beautiful scenery on its own, and much of it is a mini-banana belt where gardeners can push the zone envelop.
“Lakeview Mountain Getaway” is the garden of Hart & Leslie Gleason. An enclosed courtyard with a soothing fountain is a favorite sitting location. Beds of shade loving plants lead you to the orchard, vegetable and berry gardens. A connecting deck system takes you around a the heavily area planted with roses, iris, peonies and many other garden favorites, including a plum tree. It even has a guest house for rent. The address is 359 Artemis Way.
“Strong Creek Hobbit House” is Vicki Johnson’s hideaway that is nestled into stacked rock; shade plants of all kinds live here, with sun loving vegetables taking all available sunlight. While the garden is small, it is big spots to sit and converse with the creek providing background music. It is located at 103 Strong Creek Ave.
Bob and Ellie Lizotte have been gardening in their “Haven of Hope” at 235 Grandview for 42 years now, with Bob taking care of the edibles and Ellie taking care of the flowers. They have numerous fruits, vegetables, berries and flowers in their yard, along with a greenhouse and a resting spot in a stone grotto.
The “Hope Within” garden belongs to Jack & Yvonne Harlow. A large Japanese maple greets you in the driveway, while a raspberry patch leads you to the side yard raised bed which blooms all season. Old growth cedars stand watch over the pergola and the beds of both sun and shade loving plants. This garden is at 701 Lookout Blvd.
Mike and Becky Freeland welcome you to “Cornucopia”. A huge double fountain is the focal point in this garden, which has many unusual specimen plants. There is also a ‘Garden of Eatin”, a large vegetable garden with fruit trees and a berry patch. “Cornucopia” is located at 794 West Spring Creek Rd.
“Cougar Creek Homestead Garden” is Jon & Connie Burkhart’s 35 year old garden that is a testament to the willingness of gardeners to share. Plant starts from friends and neighbors got the colorful garden going. A ‘Loman’ wine grape covers an arbor that provides shade in summer and drinks later. A ten foot tall perennial sunflower is a show stopper. This garden is at 370 Old Cougar Rd.
“Cougar Creek Cove”, at 460 Old Cougar Rd, is the work of Neil and Ann Wimberley. Surrounded by mountains, the Cabinets in back and the Monarchs in front, the garden seems embraced by the hills. A fountain that moved from Alabama with them and a bench made by their granddaughter’s 4th grade class greet you in front. A dry streambed leads you to the backyard, where another water feature splashes and numerous vignettes are found as you walk through the garden. A large vegetable garden provides produce all season with enough to preserve for winter.
David and Yvonne Blalack have “Symmetry in Motion at 55 La Vita Bella Lane out on the Hope Peninsula. This lush, thickly planted garden sits on the lake shore, with a massive rock fireplace and a fountain in the courtyard. Hostas abound, but don’t miss any of the other plants! A fence keeps the plants safe from the Peninsula’s fearless deer.
Tickets are $10 each and may be purchased online or may be purchased at any of the gardens on the day of the event. There is a map available on the ticket page.