Tag Archives | Davidia involucrata

Peonies In The Hidden City Garden

In this post, our colleague, Dutch landscape designer, Harry Pierik, shares artistic photos and talks about peonies from his personal garden, The Hidden City Garden.

While the vanes of the dove tree, Davidia involucrata, are swaying on the branches in my Hidden City Garden, the first botanical peonies are starting to flourish.

Davidia involucrata

Davidia involucrata

Peonies are perennials of the ranunculus family, with tuberous, fleshy roots and beautiful foliage but it is their flowers that especially speak to the imagination!

For good flowering, the eyes of the rhizomes should not be planted deeper than a few centimeters, in nutritious, humus-rich, well-drained soil in a light spot.

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2 Outstanding FloweringTrees at Hidden City Garden

Written by Harry Pierik

I’m always delighted to receive a post from Harry on the seasonal changes in his HIdden City Garden. In this article, he ‘wows’ us with  2 magnificent spring flowering trees …Davidia involucrata and Cornus nutallii.

To read Harry’s last post about his garden in early spring, click on here. Check out  Harry’s website to learn more about his garden, design work, and recently published book.  Fran Sorin

“In this article I would like to show you two prominent spring bloomers that grace my hidden city garden. They both stand out because of their bright white bracts, with which they lure insects to their much more inconspicuous flowers.


Cornus nuttallii’s white flowers are beautifully highlighted against the surrounding shrubs and trees.

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A Hidden Paradise In the City

“I’m excited to introduce you to Harry Pierik whose garden I visited last April on a trip for journalists sponsored by the International Flower Bulb Center. His city garden is mesmerizing; unlike any other I’ve ever seen.

Harry, a self-taught garden designer, has designed many gardens throughout Holland; ranging from small city gardens to countryside, stately homes, and villa gardens. His compositions are distinguished by their extraordinary design, natural appearance, wide assortment of plants and easy flowing lines and contours. After he finished his career as a school master, Harry followed his passion of designing gardens and photography (with an exhibition of his photographs in Amsterdam and Paris). This April, Harry’s first book, Paradijselijke Tuinen (Gardens of Paradise), will be published; it features nine of his public gardens and their history in his hometown. For more information, about Harry, check out his website. “……Fran Sorin

It is hard to spot the Hidden City Garden from the main street, the Assendorperstraat; one could say it is practically invisible. If you were to walk down the surrounding streets you might capture a glimpse of bamboo or canopy.

Only one key is needed, just two doors to be passed and you enter a completely different world. It seems you suddenly find yourself on a clearing in the woods, instead of somewhere in the middle of town. Once inside the hidden garden, you are outside; even more so when out on the streets. Through the rich assortment and arrangement of plants an idyllic atmosphere is created, consisting of valleys full of ferns, tropical gardens and hazy slopes.

1 September. Onder de Davidia involucrata, rechts het blad van Decaisnea fargesii, links o.a. Hydrangea paniculata en Miscanthus.

From a standing point below the Davidia involucrata. On the right, the foliage of Decaisnea fargesii, the yellow ‘sunflowers’ of Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’ and the white globe thistle Echinops sphaerocephalus ‘Artic Glow’. On the left, Hydrangea paniculata, Miscanthus sinensis and Eupatorium purpureum. Above the pruned Buxus, Ilex and Ligustrum, the hardy palm Trachycarpus fortunei.

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