The Well & Tea Hedge


This stone Well marks another location where water was drawn for the garden during the Ferrell era. It features ironwork that was designed for the garden by Neel Reid. Beside the well is a Tea Hedge shaped in a shallow “v”, or chevron. This plant is the source of tea leaves and was first cultivated in this garden by Sarah Ferrell, but this particular hedge was installed by Alice Callaway.

In this 1994 recorded interview with Alice Hand Callaway, you can see her standing at the well while discussing its history.

Horticultural Specimens

  • Tea (Camellia sinensis) growing as a hedge atop the wall near the steps. Blooms white in October. This plant was cultivated by all three ladies: Sarah, Ida, and Alice. This hedge was planted by Alice Callaway.
  • Azalea (Rhododendron vittatum) growing under southern magnolia between the well and steps to Lover’s Lane. Purchased in 1942 by Alice Callaway. We do not know if this was its initial site in the garden, but was sited here at some point by Alice. Blooms lavender and sometimes white streaked with lavender, very early, beginning often in February-March if the weather warms for a few days. Rarely seen in the trade now.
  • Japanese umbrella pine (Sciadopitys verticillatta) growing on 4th Terrace within a circular bed of boxwood to the left (south) of Lover’s Lane steps. Planted by Alice Callaway, 1969.

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