A Journey Across Time

William House
4 min readJan 15, 2023


Irises bloom in the Back Pond

Contemplation, beauty, and refuge are all words we associate with our gardens. But we also fret about our gardens and endlessly toil with planting, pruning, and redesigning to achieve a seamless extension of our living space from indoors to outdoors. This combination of work and enjoyment defines our relationship with the gardens surrounding our home.

The bones of our garden were laid down long before we arrived, with retaining walls that terrace the landscape into three layers. The upper gardens near the house are separated from a lower slope by a fifteen-foot-wide arbor-covered walkway that wraps around the property. A total of six fourteen feet high, powdered steel arbors provide a roof to the walkaway by supporting roses, wisteria, honeysuckle, and clematis. The flagstone walkway below is edged on either side by rhododendrons, azaleas, arborvitae, hydrangeas, and more.

A view of the Back Arbor
Wisteria and Banksia Arbors in Bloom

When we moved into the home eight years ago, the house was surrounded primarily by lawns edged with thin strips of flower and shrub beds. Over time we have replaced the lawns with a series of themed gardens and patios interlaced with small walking paths. The gardens and beds around the home have been planted to provide color from March to November. No two evening walks are the same, and change is the only constant. The only remaining lawn lies in the front of the home, and it lights up in the spring when the azaleas on our driveway maple island bloom.

Azaleas and Heather blooming in the front gardens

Continuity and connectivity in mature gardens is achieved through both design and planting. While many of our gardens are themed, they often merge seamlessly with adjacent areas via walking paths. However, there are both design and plant considerations that tie together the gardens around the house. Over fifty clematis are scattered across the property, and you will find them in…



William House

Exploring relationships between people and our planet.