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Chanticleer Garden offers

Pulling into the circular drive of Chanticleer Garden, a pleasant aroma and an isolated atmosphere distinguish this place from the busy town and streets only minutes away.

After walking up to a desk located under a gazebo and paying a small fee, one can follow a foot path circling buildings, gardens and ponds along 35 acres of property. Flowers, including roses, are in bloom, but the landscaping is dominated by designs created with water, trees and other leafy plants.

“The owner, before he passed away, was very interested in trees and shrubs and the bigger structures,” said Laura Aiken, visitor services representative and assistant horticulturist. “He seemed to think the flowers were just a by-product.”

Following a map of the estate to the main house, which can be toured inside by reservation, one can stroll around a veranda accented by vines and potted plants and take a seat in the unique chairs overlooking the grass and trees below. According to Aiken, the various chairs, bridges and other structures found throughout the estate were crafted by the Chanticleer staff.

Walk a little further down the path and there is bamboo shooting up from the ground in the Asian wood. This wood then extends past a pond to a ruin garden, and eventually to a cut-flower and vegetable garden. The lawns are frequented by couples who relax in corners of the gardens or by the streams. Women walk along the paths with their children beside them, and a few friends sit with lunch and wine where they can view a slow-moving fountain.

“I get visitors from all over the world,” Aiken said. “For people who know plants, we’re one of the top gardens in the country.”

The garden has been open to the public for 15 years. The Rosengarten family owned the estate from 1913 when the house was built until the death of Adolf Rosengarten Jr. in 1990.

The Chanticleer Foundation has maintained and added to the garden since 1993, and the site is daily kept up to appearances by staff.

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