visiting a magical garden

Today I went to pick up my plant dividend for being a member of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS). The pick up was at Meadowbrook Farm, which when I was growing up was known as Liddon Pennock’s house. My mother knew him a little.

Mr. Pennock was an amazing florist when I was growing up and you wanted him and only him to create the floral arrangements for your non-profit gala events. He was also a huge part of the Philadelphia Flower Show. He was a very dapper dresser too. But most of all he created the enduring legacy of the gardens at Meadowbrook Farm.

Mr. Pennock created amazing gardens at Meadowbrook Farm, which is located in Jenkintown, PA. The property was left to the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society when he died. And it’s so awesome it’s preserved , and it’s so beautiful. There was a great article about the property in The Chicago Tribune in the late 1980s.

I did not get to wander all of the gardens today because not all of the areas were open to the public and it kept raining. For a while I took shelter in the glass house conservatory off the back terrace. Sadly I noticed there were a few leaks in the glass house conservatory, I hope they get fixed.

The gardens at Meadowbrook are magical. Lots of garden rooms and just eternally beautiful. It’s like a balm to the soul to visit. As much as I like Chanticleer in Wayne, the style of Meadowbrook is just more lovely to me. A lot of it has to do with the house at Meadowbrook which is very English to me. Chanticleer can feel intimidating to me, Meadowbrook is more comfortable and I also just love the staff and volunteers at Meadowbrook. They are so welcoming.

The other thing about Meadowbrook is the awesome garden shop. Inside is a treasure trove of succulents and begonias and things for inside along with a fabulous selection of pots for planting. Outside there are still some amazing deals to be had and I scored a giant viburnum in a swear a 5 gallon pot for the princely sum of eight dollars! You access the garden through its section on the PHS website and make an appointment.

I came home all inspired to tackle the chores that lie ahead for the fall along with the last of the planting for the season. It was so nice to visit a garden so special today. A garden like this absorbs you and you forget about all the craziness in the world for a little while. Peace and beauty….exactly what a good garden gives you.

Happy gardening!


  1. We must be kindred spirits, Carla! The photos of Meadowbrook are indeed magical and transported me to another place and time. Thanks for sharing such a beautiful place!


  2. I’m so jealous! I’ve been to Meadowbrook once and would love to go again. You are so fortunate to have so many great gardens to visit in your area. A get-away visit like that is something we could all use right now. Your photos are wonderful.


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