Archive for the ‘Viette Nurseries’ Category

Begonia grandis

Last Thursday afternoon I took a walk through André’s gardens. It was a beautiful sunny day with pleasant temperatures in the mid 70’s – glorious!

The gardens are beginning to transition into to their fall colors of reds, golds, oranges, and browns but there are still plenty of vibrant flowers around.

Begonia grandis

Begonia grandis

One of my favorite fall bloomers is the bright pink hardy begonia, Begonia grandis. These hardy perennials are slow to break dormancy in the spring but once they pop up, the foliage remains attractive until the first hard frost knocks them down.

The leaves are a beautiful green above with striking red venation on the underside. In August, clusters of bright pink flowers appear dangling from ruby red stems above the green foliage. They are wonderful plants for brightening the shady garden in the fall. Begonia grandis is hardy to zone 6 and will come up year after year. Even if the tuberous roots don’t survive the winter, many of the small bulbils that form in the axils of the leaves will drop to the ground in the fall and sprout new plants in the late spring. These little seedlings can be transplanted or allowed to grow where they are to create a colorful shady ground cover.

Ceratostigma foliage is just beginning to turn red.

Ceratostigma foliage is just beginning to color up in the Viette gardens.

Another colorful ground cover that is in its full glory in the late summer and fall is Ceratostigma plumbaginoides (plumbago or leadwort). This perennial is also slow to emerge in the spring but once it pops up, it forms a lovely carpet of deep green foliage that grows to about 12″ tall. In August, clusters of rich, cobalt blue flowers adorn the plants adding color to the garden through frost. The outstanding reddish orange fall foliage creates a beautiful backdrop for the deep blue flowers. Ceratostigma makes a wonderful fast growing ground cover for dry sunny banks or in rock walls. It should be cut back in the spring before new growth begins.

A lovely single pink anemone.

A lovely single pink anemone.

Japanese anemones, Anemone japonica, are another of my favorite fall bloomers. These wonderful perennials add a graceful dimension to the late summer and fall shade or part shade garden with their profusion of light and airy blooms. They come in a wide range of colors from white to pink to deep rose and in single flowers or semi-double to double flowers.

Anemone 'Honorine Jobert'

Anemone ‘Honorine Jobert’

These hardy perennials produce a mass of silvery buds and colorful blooms which rise on well-branched stems above their attractive foliage.

André uses mass plantings of several different cultivars of Japanese anemones in many of his berm gardens and they are truly spectacular! They are one of the most asked about and sought after of all the fall blooming perennials in the Viette gardens.

A bumblebee crawls over a Tricyrtis flower

A bumblebee visits a Tricyrtis flower

One of the most interesting of the fall bloomers is Tricyrtis (Toad Lily). Gardeners seeking plants for shade are always pleased to discover Toad Lilies! They offer some of the most unique flowers in the perennial world and produce them in fall, when most shade gardens could use a point of interest. Graceful arching stems bear clasping lance-shaped leaves and clusters of unusual white flowers which are heavily spotted with purple. The flowers, which are rather orchid-like, appear in the axils of the leaves and also at the tips of the stem. They are a true conversation piece in the fall garden. Tricyrtis prefer moist, well-drained soil and make excellent cut flowers.

Aster n.a. 'Hillside'

Aster n.a. ‘Hillside’

Of course it wouldn’t be fall without the glorious fall asters! These floriferous autumn bloomers are true magnets for a huge variety of butterflies! The deep purple New England aster ‘Hillside’ is one of the showiest fall bloomers in the Viette gardens. In September through October, it transitions into a solid mass of purple flowers with bright yellow centers. The bees and butterflies can’t stay away! Asters come in many different colors from vibrant reds to rose-pink to blues and even white. ‘Harrington’s Pink’ is another beautiful fall aster with bright pink blooms.

Aster n.a. 'Harrington's Pink' makes a beautiful tall mound of pink flowers in the fall.

Aster n.a. ‘Harrington’s Pink’ is covered with pink flowers in the fall.

A monarch butterfly visits a Buddleia 'White Profusion' flower

A monarch butterfly visits a Buddleia ‘White Profusion’ flower

Speaking of butterflies, the Buddleia (butterfly bushes) are still blooming strongly and will continue to flower until frost. These shrubs attract loads of butterflies and hummingbirds with their large, fragrant flower trusses. Monarch butterflies in particular seem to be drawn to the Buddleia flowers. In early fall when they are migrating through, we will often see large numbers of them flitting from one to the other throughout the gardens.

Ornamental grasses, Perovskia (Russian Sage), Sedum, Chrysopsis villosa, hardy hibiscus …

The list of beautiful fall bloomers goes on and on. Don’t let fall become the end of the flower show in your garden. Visit a garden center near you and put some pizzazz in your fall gardens!

Click for more beautiful shots of the Viette gardens in fall

Until next time – Happy Fall!

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A Christmas display at Viette's

Andre Viette loves Christmas!

He also loves to decorate! Walk into his home after Thanksgiving and you will be greeted with the sounds of Christmas music; Mitch Miller (one of my favorites), Bing Crosby, Perry Como, Burl Ives … all the old greats, plus many others. The carols just lift you up and get you into the Christmas spirit. They always remind me of our house when I was growing up; we listened to this very same music on records every Christmas season. Gosh – I’m dating myself!

The Christmas music plays non-stop while Andre is decorating the house – both indoors and outside. He loves it!

A beautiful outdoor Chirstmas display at Viette's

The outside decorations that Andre creates are my favorites. He decorates all the porches and the side of the house with a great variety of beautiful greens that he cuts from his own gardens and from a nearby tree farm. The different contrasts in color and texture of the various evergreen boughs make a really neat display. He mixes in more color by using the berried branches of hollies, Callicarpa (Beautyberry), and Juniper, and loads of different sizes and shapes of cones and seed pods …

Viette front porch at Christmas

Gold pumpkins and gourdsHe also paints a few seed pods, pumpkins, gourds, even oak and magnolia leaves with shiny gold paint to add some additional sparkle to both the indoor and outdoor arrangements. What a neat idea!

Andre incorporates some interesting antique farm tools and pieces of farm equipment into all of his outdoor displays. He also has two old sleighs which he decorates around on the front and back porches. They add a neat old-fashioned touch to the arrangements.

Whoa Dasher, I thought you were supposed to pull the sleigh!

Whoa Dasher, I thought you were
supposed to pull the sleigh!

Inside the displays are just as spectacular. Even here he combines greens, antiques, and colorful Christmas ornaments to create some very unique decorations for the house.

Snow Tree at Viette's

The “snow tree”

The “snow tree” is beautiful with glistening snow coating each ornament covered bough. In the front hallway, the “crystal tree” is filled with handmade crocheted ornaments, beautiful pearl chains, and pearl and crystal ornaments. It is just breathtaking. The mantle in the den is swathed in lustrous gold lamé and decorated with stained glass ornaments and a beautiful stained glass fireplace screen. An antique butter churn is decorated with greens, pine cones, and little Christmas elves. Everywhere you look you see Christmas – a manger arrangement; antique ornaments; old Christmas cards; pine cones; sleigh bells …

Fireplace in the den

Santas on the roof!Santas can be found everywhere – hundreds of them peaking out here and there. Andre’s Santa collection continues to grow each year. One of the fun games for the kids that visit is to count the number of Santas that Andre has nestled in displays around the house! At this point it would take quite a while the count them all. I wonder if Andre even knows …

Wishing everyone a joyous holiday season!

Until next time – Happy Holidays!


Christmas at Viette's

Back porch at Viette's

Porch Display  Santa Display

Santa on the stairs

Mantle arrangement

Antique Ornaments






Christmas display

Crystal tree

The “crystal tree”

Seed pods painted gold

Livingroom fireplace screen

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Daylilies bloom across from the festival site.

It’s time for the 2012 Daylily Festival at Viette’s!

This is always such an exciting time of the year at the nursery and this year’s festival promises to be even better than ever.

Tasting wine from Peaks of Otter Winery

Tasting wine from Peaks of Otter Winery

In its 16th year, the Daylily and Wine Festival has a new partner and a new name! The Viettes have partnered with The Virginia Farm Bureau and Lewis Media Partners to present The Daylily Food and Wine Festival. This wonderful two day event held Saturday, July 21st and Sunday, July 22nd on the beautiful grounds of the Andre Viette Farm & Nursery has become one of the largest and most popular summer festivals in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. There are all kinds of wonderful activities going on at the festival from wine tasting and great food to gardening seminars, crafts, and beautiful music. Visit the Daylily Food and Wine Festival website for details.

Daylily Aunt Emma

The Viettes consider daylilies to be the “Perfect Perennial”

The Viettes are excited to be working with Virginia Farm Bureau to continue this unique festival that so many have enjoyed over the last 15 years. This year’s 16th annual event will provide something for everyone, including increasing our awareness of how horticulture and agriculture enhance our daily lives. In keeping with this expanded focus on agriculture, this year’s Daylily Food & Wine Festival will benefit The Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom. We are excited about this program and Andre has been very involved as a member of the board of directors for several years. The mission of Agriculture in the Classroom is to educate Virginia’s children about the importance of agriculture.
AITC helps teachers integrate the study of Virginia agriculture and natural resources into their curriculum. Great stuff for our kids!

Miniature landscapes

Learn to create miniature landscapes

This year, the Virginia Farm Bureau has helped to heighten the event offerings by enhancing the Virginia foods, wines, and gardening education available at the festival. We have several unique seminars lined up for the weekend from growing hops to growing grapes to growing daylilies. There’s even a seminar on gardening for chickens and one on creating miniature landscapes!

Very interesting topics this year!

Lots of things to see and do at the festival.

Lots of things to see and do at the festival.

An exciting new addition to the festival is an extensive farmer’s market where local farmers will offer fresh, locally grown foods for attendees to purchase and take home. We’ve always wanted to expand on the agricultural/Virginia foods aspect of the festival and this year with the help of the Virginia Farm Bureau we’ve been able to do just that – and this is just the beginning. We hope to expand on this in the future and make the Daylily Food & Wine Festival even better and more exciting.

So if you’re in the area this coming weekend come out and enjoy our Daylily Food and Wine Festival. Better yet, plan to make a weekend of it! Visit the official Daylily Food and Wine Festival website for information and to purchase discounted advanced tickets that you can print out on your own printer and bring with you! Easy …

Oh and the weather? It’s supposed to be in the upper 70’s to low 80’s and sunny – glorious! Don’t forget your sunscreen!

I’ll be here – I hope to see you!

Until next time – Happy Gardening!

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Andre Viette, Mark Viette, and Lori Jones (broadcast producer)

Andre Viette, Mark Viette, and Lori Jones (broadcast producer) during the Father’s Day broadcast of Easy Gardening with Mark Viette.

Submitted by Claire Viette

Martin Viette with his oriental poppy ‘Cedar Hill’

Martin Viette with his oriental poppy ‘Cedar Hill’

Yesterday morning, Mark invited his father, Andre, to join his two hour WOR Radio broadcast in celebration of Father’s Day. The two spent several minutes of the opening hour talking of Martin Viette, Andre’s late father, who came from Switzerland at the age of sixteen and learned the art of gardening at the Havemeyer Estate on Long Island.

Listeners enjoyed hearing the history of how the family evolved into a horticultural legend, building upon the passion of Martin Viette, who went into business for himself in 1929 when he started his legendary nursery on Long Island, Martin Viette Nurseries.

In 1976, André moved his family from the hustle and bustle of Long Island to a beautiful farm in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, where he established Andre Viette Farm and Nursery. Over the years, Andre and Mark have created spectacular display gardens on the nursery grounds which provide year around enjoyment to thousands of visitors each year.

Andre grew up in the nursery business on Long Island and graduated from Cornell University with a degree in Floriculture. Mark graduated from Virginia Tech with a degree in Ornamental Horticulture.

Andre & Mark have collaborated on several books, both for the Mid-Atlantic area and New York. They both taught for many years at Blue Ridge Community College, covering many horticultural courses.

The Viette Family invites you to visit their nursery and gardens in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley. Spend some time wandering through the gardens and get some ideas for your own landscape. Our garden center is well stocked with perennials and annuals, including some of the best daylily and hosta varieties grown today. Plan a visit during our 16th Annual Daylily Food and Wine Festival on July 21st and 22nd!

Until next time – Happy Gardening!

Beautiful summer gardens at Viette's

Beautiful summer gardens at Viette’s

Colorful shade garden with Astilbe, hosta, and Japanese Anemone

Colorful shade garden with Astilbe, hosta, and Japanese Anemone

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