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Nashville Georgian Revival Home
Subdivided 19th Century Plantation Property

Landscape Architecture by PAGE | DUKE, Nashville


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This 1930s-built Nashville home is in the Georgian Revival style, an English architecture that was transplanted in the late 19th century to the U.S. and rebranded as "Colonial Revival." A brick walkway leads from the new brick and Belgian cobble motor court to the welcoming columned porch, which is flanked by "cloud" pruned boxwoods.
Reed Brown Photography


When the new homeowner purchased the Nashville property, it consisted of a pleasant 1930s Georgian Revival home on approximately six acres with a significant number of mature canopy trees in a pastoral setting. Georgian architecture, by definition, originated between 1714 and 1830 during the reigns of the House of Hanover British monarchs (George I, II, III and IV). The style was later revived in the late 19th century in the U.S. as Colonial Revival architecture.

While the home had a stately bearing and presence, the property had almost no landscape features: no walks, walls, terraces and no hint of a garden. The garden and landscape as you see it today have evolved significantly under the stewardship of the current owner over approximately four years and three phases of a long term landscape master plan.

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Arborist Darren Hubbard used salvaged heavy timber to create an elevated play house (left) beneath the boughs. Adjacent right is a western red cedar clad auxiliary service storage building.


The landscape plan evolved during long talks with the homeowners and their children, discussing to the fullest extent how they imagined using this beautiful property. A thorough site-specific field survey revealed significant assets such as centuries old canopy trees, a gorgeous stream with a resident population of wood ducks and the location of an outbuilding. All these features were carefully noted and worked into the final articulation of the landscape master plan.

Development of phase one elements of the master plan involved the creation of a new gravel driveway approach to the front of the house across the original stone arched bridge.

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Oklahoma whitebud trees and ferns border the brick entry approach to the rear garden.


This new driveway allowed the presentation of the house to take advantage of the magnificent grove of ancient trees on the property. A brick walkway from the new brick and Belgian cobble motor court now leads all to the welcoming columned porch.

The garage at the rear of the house was turned 180 degrees to open up the opportunity to create an intimate garden courtyard focused on a long, elegant reflecting pool anchored by a pebble mosaic lined fountain water feature. A new covered latticed pavilion provides space for outdoor dining, and relaxing on cool evenings in front of a fireplace. These features were centered on the location for a future pool in phase two.

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During the second phase of the landscape master plan, the opportunity arose for the homeowner to purchase two contiguous properties adjacent to the proposed pool, effectively doubling the scope of the original project to almost 12 acres, which allowed the design team to indulge the owner's passion for child-friendly tall fescue lawns, along with contiguous expanses of warm season grass prairie-like swaths of little blue stem, big blue stem and Rudbeckia. The century-old groves of white and burr oaks, sugar maples and walnut trees were augmented by plantings of Chinkapin oaks, Kentucky Coffee trees and hickories.


Much discussion evolved around the selection of an appropriate stone surface around the new pool. The owner desired a gray-based color scheme in a material that would not retain heat in the sultry days of a middle Tennessee summer. A Waukasau limestone from Wisconsin was finally selected, which offered a solution to almost all the owners' initial criteria for the material.

During the second phase of the implementation of the landscape master plan, the opportunity arose to purchase two contiguous properties adjacent to the proposed pool, effectively doubling the scope of the original project to almost 12 acres. This purchase allowed for a vastly more relaxed naturalistic landscape to evolve, enabling the design team to indulge the owner's passion for child-friendly turf type tall fescue lawns with contiguous expanses of warm season grass prairie-like swaths of little blue stem, big blue stem and Rudbeckia. The newly expanded lawns and swaths of native grasses allowed for the planting of a comprehensive spectrum of native canopy trees to middle Tennessee: Burr, white and Chinkapin oaks, Kentucky coffee trees, and hickories to further enhance the estate-like quality of the landscape. A spectrum of highly invasive nonnatives such as winter honeysuckle and Japanese privet were eradicated from the site to allow for the full growth potential of the newly planted native grasses and lawns.

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A fore-pool with hand carved limestone fountain runnels on each of the four corners transitions to a rectangular reflecting pool with lotuses. Long-lived maple trees flank the water feature, along with rounded boxwoods, ferns hydrangeas and hostas.


The third and final phase of the project allowed for the expansion of the plant palette to include a somewhat more exotic spectrum of plant materials, predicated on the owners desire to have a year round display of plants. Presenting a particularly elegant texture display, bloom sequence, suffusing the landscape with fragrance, or displaying a particularly elegant structural profile in the winter landscape was a primary goal of the design team. Following those criteria an extensive collection of rare Japanese maples was added next to the landscape and 120,000 daffodils of five varieties were naturalized in the emerging meadows. A collection of hydrangeas offer floral interest from April through September, and welcoming white buds underplanted with ferns and hostas lead up to the entry gate of the pool complex.

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The raised pavilion looks out to the pool and the vast lawn expanses. The homeowner wanted a grey-colored stone for the pool decking, one that would not retain heat during the sultry summer months. The selection was a Waukasau limestone from Wisconsin.


The landscape architects had the pleasure and challenges of working with a client on this complex project over almost four years, ultimately very satisfying for any professional. The final pleasure as always lies in the realization that the design has brought a relaxed and comfortable ambiance to the home and property.

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The estate driveway, blanketed with brown 'bird shot' gravel, crosses over a 1940s constructed stone arch bridge as you enter the property. The bridge was constructed of Tennessee limestone quarried just north of Nashville. It crosses a natural stream that emanates from a beautiful nineteenth century stone spring on an adjacent property.


Team
Landscape Architecture: PAGE | DUKE, Nashville
Contractor: Matt Bright
Custom Millwork: Vintage Millworks
Madison Pool
Natural Creations
Stone: Pyramid Stone



As seen in LASN magazine, November 2017.






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