February 28, 2024

A Visit to Vizcaya Museum & Gardens

During the cold Northeast winters, it's nice to head south and visit gardens flourishing with lush green foliage.

During a short weekend trip to Florida, my head gardener, Ryan McCallister, visited Vizcaya Museum & Gardens, previously known as Villa Vizcaya, the former winter residence of businessman James Deering of the Deering McCormick-International Harvester fortune on Biscayne Bay. The extraordinary early 20th century estate includes Italian Renaissance-inspired gardens, statues, fountains, and a beautiful collection of plantings.

Here are some photos, enjoy.

February 27, 2024

Tropical Plants from Excelsa Gardens

For serious and passionate gardeners like myself, gardening is about color, form, and variety - I especially like rare and unusual plants.

During my recent business trip to Florida, I purchased several specimens from Excelsa Gardens in Loxahatchee Groves, a wonderful and charming nursery specializing in hard-to-find exotic tropicals. Among the plants I brought home - Euphorbia stenoclada, Licuala grandis, Dieffenbachia 'Camouflage', Philodendron 'Black Gold', Medinilla magnifica, and a Bismarckia nobibilis palm.

Here are some photos.

February 26, 2024

Alocasias for My Greenhouse

It's no secret that I love gardening and plants of all kinds. I have a particular fondness for potted specimens and over the years, I've amassed quite a collection here at my Bedford, New York farm.

Among my favorites is the alocasia. Alocasia is a genus of rhizomatous broad-leaved plants from the family Araceae. Currently, there are about 90 species native to tropical and subtropical regions of Asia and eastern Australia. Alocasia is also known by the common name elephant's ear because of its enormous arrow-shaped leaves. Many species are popularly grown for their bold markings and prominent veins. Last week, I added a few more varieties to my greenhouse from Excelsa Gardens in Loxahatchee Groves, Florida.

Enjoy these photos.