REALLY for the Birds

I’ve wanted to show you this place.  My reluctance to do so is that  I can’t do it  justice with words or camera.  It is an extraordinary garden where the bird songs, the sound of moving water, and breezes rustling in the leaves of the towering trees send your soul soaring skyward and make you one with nature.

It is not a secret, but it is hidden.  There are no signs  to point you there or even to let you know you have found it,  just a brick wall and an unassuming house.  They give no hint of what lies inside.

Just behind this wall...
Just behind this wall...

This is Wing Haven.   I have mentioned this place before.   I can walk here from my house and it is to my shame that I do not do so regularly.    The story of this magic garden is told better by others, but I will tell you that over a half century ago a young man built a house for his bride here on what was then a field of red clay with only a single tree. Together the two of them spent the rest of their lives here,  planting a paradise for themselves and for the  birds.   There is a short film that tells their lovely story.winghaven 011

They planted trees and shrubs to feed, protect, and provide nesting sites for the birds.   The choke cherry is as welcome as the Japanese maple.

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Within lie a children’s garden, an herb garden, a rose garden, a formal garden, but mostly it is structured in a deliberately untidy way,  wild and majestic.

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There are walks of grass, of moss-covered bricks, of mulch.  Formal paths,  winding, narrow mulched paths….

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 And water…moving water.  Large ponds…

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 Hidden birdbaths…

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Birdhouses and arbors, plenty of nesting sites…

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There are benches to sit for a spell…under its spell.

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Look!  A spot  for human birdsong…

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What else am I missing?

OH. . . birds, perhaps  Wrong Mary!  My camera zoom and shutter speed can’t even catch my dog unless she’s asleep, so bird photographs are out of the question for me. 

But hey…did you see that rabbit on the grass path?


6 thoughts on “REALLY for the Birds

  1. blueheron

    I DID see the rabbit when I went back, but . . . big sigh . . . can you figure out how the reader of your blog can enlarge the pictures? Some blogs seem to be able to code some pictures to do that. You have some lovely photographs. While I have been there, it has been a long time, and I don’t think I ever walked the entire garden. (Too busy loading up on the plants from the plant sale!)

  2. Hi there,
    Thank you for visiting 100 words from Dublin (blogspot).
    What is that song …? Merrily, merily, merrily, life is but a dream?

    These are beautiful pictures – aren’t gardens beautiful?
    I work with Americans in many capacities and for one reason or another I’ve been dealing with people in Nth Carolina recently.. and now Wing Haven too.

  3. What an absolutely gorgeous place the Clarkson’s dreamt of long ago, began, and created . I bet it is beautiful to see in person. Going to the gardens was always a special “thing” my mom and I enjoyed doing together. The site for Winter Haven is really interesting…. (also chock full of great tid-bit info on what plants, trees, shrubs, bushes, etc. attract birds.) I love the look and feel of moss-covered brick. It’s like seeing something that’s been comfortably positioned for a long time and is just right just the way it is.

    “Rest Yourself Under The Tree and Comfort ye your heart.”

    So glad you shared this place! If I am ever in or going through the Charlotte area…….. Winer Haven!

    Great to see you again – see ya soon.

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