VISITATION BY APPOINTMENT ONLY.
Hillside is a historic 1882 shingle style house designed by Boston architects Peabody and Stearns. Over a dozen magnificent 135-year-old Beech Trees, London Plane Trees, and Blue Atlas Cedars grace this two and a half acre property. In recent years gardens have been created by the world-renowned landscape architecture firm, Oehme van Sweden, recognized for their revolutionary green planting approach and strong architectural features. Water is a recurring theme, as a brownstone bubbling fountain, a reflecting pool, and a stone lotus pond echo the distant views of Easton Pond and First Beach of Newport, RI. These water features attract a diverse bird community and indicate thriving biodiversity in this beautiful backyard ecosystem. In environmental studies, some of the most useful data birds can provide is overall habitat health; it is also suggested that bird diversity directly relates to butterfly diversity in habitat patches such as backyards.
Over 130 trees have been added to replace the aging tree canopy, along with masses of shrubs, perennials and spring blooming bulbs. Hillside plans to continue to add plants that increase diversity including native perennials and shrubs. The purpose of this arboretum is to celebrate, enhance, and maintain the 2.5 acres of trees, shrubs, herbaceous plants, and wildlife habitat areas of Hillside, as well as sharing this collection to educate and inspire the community.
The cobblestone drive features stately Copper European beech trees (Fagus sylvatica ‘Cupra’) upon entry and leads to some of the most architecturally interesting features of Hillside. The teardrop garden trees include dogwood and halesia, underplanted with thousands of bulbs each spring, and with ferns, astilbe in the summer and white anenome in the fall.
MILLSTONE FOUNTAIN GARDEN
An intimate path through a garden featuring a brownstone millstone fountain surrounded by spring blooming Winter-hazel (corylopsis), Witchhazel (hamamelis), grasses, hosta, ferns, and euphorbia. Across the secondary drive is a grove with a London Plane Tree (Platanus x acerifolia), European Beech (Fagus sylvatica), and the newest addition, a European Turkish Oak (Quercus cerris).
REFLECTING POOL AND TERRACE
Two outdoor living rooms with a small herb garden, reflecting pool, and brownstone bird bath are framed by masses of ‘Blushing Knockout’ roses and ‘Little Lamb’ hydrangea, underplanted with grasses and perennials. Plantings of echinacea, baptisia, gentian, brunnera, perovskia, and heuchera along with complementing shrubs anchor the verandah and path leading to the mediation spiral.
The beech cathedral provides a view of Easton Pond and is home to several species of European Beech (Fagus sylvatica), including Copper, Weeping, and Green, as well as a London Plane Tree (Platanus x acerifolia).
In the shade of the Beech Cathedral, Paper Bark maples (Acer griseum) and several flowering shrubs are underplanted with ferns and cimicifuga. Leading down the hill is a grove of spring flowering trees, then a swath of crabapples, and several species of dogwood trees all underplanted with Aster ‘October Skies’, amsonia, and Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’.
PLAYHOUSE & SOUTH BORDER
These gardens feature a small lotus pond, witch-hazel (hamamelis), hydrangea and an evergreen border of hollies (ilex), cedar (Cedrus deodara), and hemlock (Tsuga canadensis ‘Gentsch White’), punctuated by a Redbud (Cercis canadensis ‘Alba’) and weeping katsura (Cercidipyllum japonica ‘Pendula’).
The Connecticut Shist meditative spiral planted with thyme is one of the most recent additions to the Hillside gardens. Surrounding gardens feature Oak Leaf Hydrangeas (Hydrangea quercifolia), viburnum (Viburnum carlesii), winterberry (Ilex verticillata), several fern species, astrantia, and hosta.
VISITING HILLSIDE: By appointment only. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org