Rosedown has nearly twenty-eight acres of 19th century styled gardens. The garden was started in 1835 by Martha Barrow Turnbull and continued by her daughter Sarah, and Sarah’s daughters.
The garden contains both English styled picturesque gardens and formal leisure gardens.
Our warm season flowers include: Celosia, Lantana, Begonia, Coleus, Balsam just to name a few.
The Rose gardens contain a collection of antique and modern roses that bloom in April and October. Most of our roses are Teas, Chinas, Noisettes, Bourbons or Polyanthas. Before the oaks in the allee got to large, Martha planted a lining of roses along the allee.
The Camellia garden is where Martha and her trusted garden slave Augustus experimented with grafting camellias. You will see Camellia Japonica as you walk through the garden along with many other varieties of Camellia.
The Underwood Oak in the formal garden is our oldest tree. It is 250 years old and is named for Mrs. Katherine F. Underwood who restored Rosedown plantation in the 1950’s. The tallest tree is a Loblolly Pine located in the northwest corner of the garden and is over 300 years old. The largest trees along the allee and throughout the gardens are Live Oak. They are native to the southeast U.S. and stay green all year long (hence the name Live Oak). The trees in the allee were planted about 10 years before construction of the main house.
The Spanish moss hanging from our trees is not a moss. It is in the bromeliad family, a relative to the pineapple. It is not harmful to the trees and is spread by seeds via the wind.
Martha had three orchards at Rosedown. Our orchard is just a sample of what she would have grown in them, based on the entries found in her garden diary.
Gulf King Peach, La Feliciana, Babcock peaches, and Florida Gold
Our Plums are a delight!
Bavey’s Green Gage, Burbank Plum, Methley, Gulf Rose and Gulf Beauty
Orient, Keiffer, Ayers, Seckel, Pineapple pear, Comice
Fuji, Ein Shemer, Joy, Shell
Quince were once common in America and most farms had a least one quince tree. The fruit is large, hard and tart. Quince is mostly used to make a wonderful jelly. We have several varieties of quince including: Pineapple, Orange, Cook’s Jumbo and Smyrna.
Fig preserves are the best! We grown Celeste and Brown Turkey figs and right now our trees are loaded. The figs are still green, but in a few weeks, they will be ready for picking.
We have Brazos, Chickasaw, Apache, Rosbourgh and Arapaho. The grapes are getting ripe too. Our grape orchard is full of Concord and Mars grapes.