Garden tour benefits Beautification League
Published 12:00 am, Friday, April 22, 2016
NEW CANAAN — Beauty may ultimately be in the eye of the beholder, but it would be hard not to appreciate and admire the design work of one very dedicated local gardening aficionado.
On Sunday afternoon Carol Seldin opened her home on Ponus Ridge Road to a parade of landscape admirers, who toured the carefully crafted and lovingly tended expanse of her magic garden.
“My mantra is gardens are for sharing,” said Seldin, who has spent a decade constructing the series of subtle sloping pathways through a veritable arboretum of flowers, shrubs and trees.
The event was a fundraiser for the New Canaan Beautification League.
“I’m a nurturer,” said Seldin. “I was an English teacher and I nurtured my students. I nurtured my two sons.” Now, she said, this is gives her the opportunity to bring that care to gardening.
“This is just an exquisite garden,” said Liz Orteig, league member. “It’s so magnificently planned.”
She pointed out the layers of growth that become visible from different angles, with plantings designed in such a way as to accent one another while blending together to create a kind of bucolic canvass.
“You have to walk every little path here because every inch is gorgeous,” Orteig said.
Descending down into the garden, visitors were met with an array of blossoming tulips and daffodils cultivated in and around narrow turning paths that are shaded by an ever-changing array of taller growths. Several unique statues and fountains also dot the garden, which ultimately opens up at the bottom of the property with a sweeping view back toward the large house.
“Carol is a master gardener,” said league Co-President Faith Kerchoff. “It’s a very peaceful walk she’s created. It’s beautiful.”
“She wanted to do something special for our group,” she said, noting that Seldin welcomes in other organizations to tour her garden at different times of the year.
“She believes in sharing,” said Gale Stafford, who chaired the event for the league.
She explained it’s a volunteer group that combines education and beautification.
“The goal of this was to showcase the New Canaan Beautification League and what we do for New Canaan, which includes all the triangles beautifications,” she said. “We maintain Lee Garden (and) really our hallmark — though they’re not up yet — but there are over 200 hanging baskets throughout the downtown area.”
The league also hosts free monthly talks from noted horticulturists.
“I used to go to their garden lectures,” said Sandra Siegel of New Canaan, “and I felt I should join their efforts to make the town beautiful.”
“And I’m so grateful that Carol Seldin opened up her beautiful home,” she said.