The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley also has a large building that only opened in 2005, housing collections of art and antique displays, everything about the Shenandoah Valley area. There is a house in the gardens,open to view the ground floor, and this was owned by Julian Glass, who donated the buildings and land to be opened to the public. It took Glass and his partner, R. Lee Taylor over 35 years to complete the gardens.
I started off walking around the museum, wanting to save the best part, the gardens, until last. It was lovely and cool inside, outside was humid and in the upper 80's, and to be honest, the coolness was the main focal point for me. I was aware of paintings and objects, but really, the only items that pulled me out of my trance as I wallowed in the A.C. were a huge copper still and a bag of Route 11 chips, which was part of a display featuring products made in the Shenandoah valley.
So before long, I was back outside in the oppressive heat and walking down towards the gardens. I was lucky to almost have the place to myself, guessing that other folks didn't really want to be walking around gardens in this high humidity and under a blazing sun. But I looked at the map and was soon entranced at the wonderful names given to various parts, the Parterre Garden and the Grand Allée.
The seeds can be purchased here, so I think I'll plant some next year. They have a very rapid growth stage and can grow 2-3" a day!
I was extremely fortunate at not having to share this little wonderland with crowds. There was one guy with a very loud voice, trailing behind his wife, and lamenting about the heat. His whining tones were quite pathetic and her face portrayed quite obviously how she felt about him. I managed to lose them by ducking into a courtyard and eventually his voice faded away, leaving me once again to the soft hum of insects accompanying the bird songs.