. Can these words describe any city other than New Orleans? With new plant life bursting from every cranny and ancient cypress trees, the gardens here present many unusual combinations of freshness and decay. Gardens of New Orleans
has captured this magnificence in full glory, with page after page of beautifully green photographs.
Authors Lake Douglas and Jeannette Hardy include historical sketches, maps, and photographs that provide an informative introduction to the city. The outdoor French Market photographs show piles of fruit you can almost taste, even if the picture is in sepia tones. The section on public spaces follows, bringing glossy color photos of charming statuary and enormous live oaks that are memorable both for their size and grace. The final chapter is filled with close-up shots of many private gardens in the city, and show off the best New Orleans has to offer: peaceful balconies, bright flowers, antique ornaments, and artfully trimmed hedges. The lovely Ursiline convent is included in this section, with its glowing white statues and peaceful paths for meditation.
In every case, photographer Richard Sexton has captured the remarkable light as it filters through the trees. His close-ups clearly show the vines and sprouts popping up between bricks and under older plants, while his landscapes showcase both the heavy greenery and the well-known cast-iron decorations on houses, fences, and furniture. Whether you're a New Orleans native or simply love impossibly green gardens, this lovely book will bring the rich flavor of this charming city to your living room. --Jill Lightner
Originally founded on French and Spanish traditions of landscaping, New Orleans gardens today are a stunning blend of native varieties and bold additions from wildly varied cultures and sensibilities. Fragrant gingers and night-blooming jasmine scent the air. Live oaks and sycamores canopy stately boulevards. Decadent nineteenth-century buildings provide an exquisite backdrop for exotic, profligate vegetation. Horticultural authors Lake Douglas and Jeannette Hardy, longtime New Orleans residents and gardeners, explore this rich history. They tour public gardens and open the doors to lovingly tended private paradises - balconies draped in vines spilling over wrought-iron railings, densely landscaped patios, and expansive mansion grounds. Richard Sexton's sumptuous photographs celebrate the many traditions and cultures interwoven in New Orleans' magnificent landscape heritage.