Friday, July 1, 2011

Garden Tour: House #1 Centre Island

A few weeks ago, I attended a garden tour through four homes in the Oyster Bay area. Oyster Bay is located along Long Island's northern shore, bordering the Long Island Sound.  Traditionally, this region has been the most affluent on Long Island, which has earned it the nickname "the Gold Coast." My two year old daughter and I saw many beautiful gardens, manicured lawns and breathtaking views on this tour.

The first home was located in Centre Island, NY.  Centre Island is a 605 acre peninsula with over four miles of coast line. The house sits on a six-acre plot of land with spectacular views of the harbor. The owner has lived there for 30 years and as such, her gardens are extensive and stunning. She is passionate about flower gardening and flower arranging and has planned her garden so she can have things to work with all year round.

Upon entering the backyard, we were greeted with a delightful table setting. A gorgeous flower arrangement hung from a tree limb above, inviting the visitor to sit and enjoy the peacefulness in the shade.

The back of the house, facing the water.

The view of the harbor and personal dock from the backyard.

A covered but open outdoor patio was filled furniture suitable for dining or simply relaxing. The ceiling was covered with Ivy and the outer walls were draped with Wisteria.

Behind the guest house on the right, she had a workshop room, complete with a counter, refrigerator and various tools for flower arranging and potting.

Outside the guest house was the kitchen garden filled with all sorts of vegetables, herbs and edible flowers.

Following the path leading away from the kitchen garden, I walked through a rose-covered archway. The scent was heavenly!

The path led to the pool, where the owner had filled gardens on either sides of the pool with a gorgeous mix of perennials.

Behind the pool, nestled among the trees in the yard was this fantastic tree house. It had a winding staircase up to the "house" where one could look at the main house on one side and the harbor on the other.

For those less inclined to have lunch in the tree house, there was a beautiful gazebo at the edge of the property, overlooking the water. The property sloped down just beyond the gazebo to a small beach below.

The pond was indeed a highlight. The owner had created a small "stream" that ran down into it, providing a hypnotic trickling sound. The owner told me she had a Blue Heron visit that morning, but usually only enjoys watching the koi swimming below the water and the frogs sunning themselves on the rocks.

Beyond the pond was a woodland walk filled with Ferns, Hostas and other shade loving plants. She had bird baths and bird houses placed all along the path.

Looping back to the main house from the woodland walk, there was a small glass house that fit only a few sitting chairs, a table with chairs and a hot tub. I could imagine sitting in here in the winter, admiring the snow covered trees and grounds, but being warmed by the sun (of the hot tub!).

Along the back of the house was another covered outdoor patio, again beautifully and naturally decorated with ivy on the ceiling.

View of the backyard from the glass house.
A truly stunning spot to visit. We spent well over an hour there looking through each nook and cranny of the yard and its gardens. What a treasure to be able to visit!

Check out the other gardens on the tour:
House #2: Lattingtown
House #3: Bayville
House #4: Oyster Bay Cove


  1. Thanks so much for this - Center Island is actually where I grew up, so your post brought back some lovely memories for me! Charlotte

  2. Wow, Charlotte! That is so cool - glad I was able to bring back some memories ;)

  3. This really was a wonderful tour. I really like the house too.


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