The Tea and Trillium tour is run by Susie Egan, who gardens at Cottage Lake with a special focus on Trilliums. There are 48 varieties of Trilliums, and she has them all. Not all of them were flowering when we were there, but that's the way it should be. Trilliums are a spring ephemeral perennial, and most perennials flower briefly. But since Susie has some that flower early in the spring, even in snow, and some that flower later, you are pretty much assured of seeing Trilliums in flower whenever you go (the tours only run in the spring).
|The main house at Cottage Lake Gardens|
|All set for tea, with Trillium-decorated plates and glasses|
|Susie gave a Powerpoint presentation on Trilliums while we sat and had tea and cakes.|
|The view out the front door -- Let's go!|
|Cottage Lake -- the view from the house|
|Susie pointing out a Primula -- it's the same color as her shirt|
|Double white Trillium|
|White Trillium sulcatum|
Like my own garden, Cottage Lake Gardens is built on glacial till, which is basically a small amount of sandy and/or clay soil and lots of rocks. And like me, Susie has edged all her beds with the many rocks she unearths as she digs.
Susie has also planted an interesting variety of foliage plants as companions to her Trilliums. It's a smart move not to plant too many other flowering plants, so as not to draw attention away from the Trillium flowers.
|The mottled leaves of a Podophyllum offer a good contrast to the mottled leaves of the Trilliums|
|A painted fern also makes a nice combo, with good burgundy echoes of each other|
|The small blue flowers and white, veined leaves of Brunnera go well with the yellow Trillium luteum|
|Paris aff. incompleta|
|Trillium in a sea of Oxalis|
Susie saves most of the seeds from her plants and propagates them herself. She has quite a variety for sale at the end of the tour. I have a few Trilliums growing here, but I bought a couple of new ones.