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The Secret Garden

The Burnett Fountain, Conservatory Garden, Central Park, Manhattan, New York.

Autumn 2006. (also, view here: )


The South Garden (or English Garden).


The southern garden features the English style and as such is much less formal than the other two. It is planted to be enjoyed the year round and almost every week there are new blooms to admire. At the center is a bronze sculpture, the Burnett Fountain, depicting a young boy and girl. Based on characters from The Secret Garden, by Frances Hodgson Burnett the fountain was designed and constructed in 1936 by Bessie Potter Vonnoh. It is surrounded by a reflecting pool upon which float hundreds of water lilies and in which swim dozens of extremely sophisticated goldfish (don’t forget the address).


Ringing the fountain and pool are the seasonal planting beds. Around this are arranged an amazing collection of perennial trees and shrubs, which now features, at its southern end a restful shade garden. Perhaps the most popular of the three the English Garden, with its revolving display of seasonal blooms and quiet, magnolia scented walkways, is the favorite of readers, gardeners, strollers and the contentedly sighing stare-ers into space. Stepping through the Vanderbilt Gates offers not only a change of pace and locale, but also the illusion of temporal transport. You not only leave behind the sights and sounds of the city, but the date as well.


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Uploaded on November 4, 2006