We would all love to have spectacular gardens of our own, but where do we turn for inspiration? A good place to start are the gardens of luxury homes. Where cost is not a consideration, these over-the-top properties come in many styles from many historical empires including classical and English formal to Tuscan to modern – and even those that defy classification. Here are a few examples of homes where no expense was spared in the landscaping. Perhaps they will inspire an idea or two for your own home.
Rancho Santa Fe, California
This $40 million home that boasts 17 bedrooms has grounds that cover almost 40 acres. The extensive outdoor space is occupied by classic gardens inspired by the scenes in the paintings of Monet with soft color and rolling scenery. The garden contains a beautiful Japanese foot bridge spanning a lily pond stocked with Koi fish and filled with lilies – it even features a majestic, man made waterfall. The garden contains a family barbecue area, a meditation space, a fire pit and an outdoor reading room for when you want to get away from it all.
Casa Loma, Toronto, Canada
This is one home with a truly magical landscape. As one of Toronto’s historic landmarks, the Casa Loma features six acres of formal gardens. There are different areas of the garden where specific species are cultivated, some of them unusual. One area, dubbed the “Secret Garden”, is off the main pathway and has the feel of an English cottage garden with delphiniums, climbing roses, peonies, hostas and lavender.
Casa Loma has an Alice in Wonderland feel, where some plants grow to larger than life sizes. Some of the grasses and dahlias grow 12 to 15 feet high, creating a bizarre sense of scale. Situated on a series of terraces that step down from the entrance to the mansion, the gardens make you feel as though you have entered an extravagant, unreal environment.
This is not your average Texas garden, and no tumbleweeds will be found here. This home, coming in at $2.3 million, is in the eastern section of Texas which has a humid, subtropical climate much like it’s neighbor, Louisiana. As such, it is stocked with flowers and plants that enjoy humid climates making it feel lush and tropical. It also has a flower-draped pergola, a spectacular cathedral-like greenhouse, and the entire outdoor landscape is lit with atmospheric lighting. Palm trees surround the resort-like pool which also boasts a spa and a fire pit.
Scotney Castle Garden, Kent, England
If you want to feel like you’re being swept off your feet by Prince Charming than a visit to the Scotney Castle Garden is in order. It is said to be one of the most romantic gardens in all of England. The earliest owner of the manor was Lambert de Scoteni in 1137. The garden was designed to embrace drama, variety and rough edges. The old 14th century castle on the estate was ruined to create a dramatic focal point for the garden. It gives the feeling of a kingdom taken over by plants. This garden is stunning year-round, with wisteria and roses covering the ruins in summer, and richly colored trees in fall.