Yard Tours

Garden Conservancy Tour

October 14, 2017

Gardening Volunteers of South Texas have partnered with the national Garden Conservancy’s Open Days program to open six outstanding landscapes to the public.

The Garden Conservancy Open Days program raises funds to support and preserve important private and public gardens.  From their Website:

“Through Open Days, the Garden Conservancy is working to fuel the public’s passion for gardens and gardening.  Since 1995, Open Days has welcomed more than one million visitors into thousands of inspired private landscapes – from urban rooftops to organic farms, historic estates to innovative suburban lots – in forty-one states. This incredible annual program is produced almost entirely by volunteers…hundreds of individuals who help us showcase regional horticultural and stylistic expressions in a national context—celebrating the rich diversity in American gardens.”

In putting together our program of San Antonio Open Days gardens we considered each garden in the context of our beautiful city and its rich heritage.  The idea was to show a range of garden styles and inspire local gardeners with ideas for their own gardens.

The tour will feature a contemporary dry gravel garden in NW San Antonio, a large European style estate garden in Hill Country Village, suburban lot with beautiful trees and lawnless garden in Deerfield, historic Monte Vista with a colorful artistic garden, a small native plant cottage garden an eclectic new garden reflective of San Antonio and the owner’s travels.

Peterson Garden

9103 Rushing Street

Previously on the Watersaver Landscape Tour, this stunning garden is back by popular demand.  Since that first tour, Linda Peterson has been featured on the Central Texas Gardener PBS show and hosted groups of curious gardeners from other cities to enjoy the beauty of her self-designed garden of sculptural xeric plants in the front gravel garden and lush dry shade plants in the back.

Gilliam Garden

640 Terrell Road

Designed by John Troy, ASLA, the Gilliam’s garden draws from their travels and their love of the architecture of San Antonio and the Missions which influenced the style of their new home in Terrell Hills.  Mostly lawnless with abundant pathways and hardscape, including a brick labyrinth, this house and garden, though new, look to old San Antonio for its inspiration.

Fisher Garden

301 Lilac Lane

Mary Fisher has been a member of the San Antonio Botanical Gardens board for years.  The Fishers have added many watersaving features to their Texas cottage style landscape.  Native plants, buffalo grass, Ong Jars for rainwater catchment and ample hardscape conserve water.

Ware Garden

317 Limestone Creek

While not intended as a watersaving garden, this estate garden has large gravel terraces, a wildflower meadow and olive grove instead of lawn.

Tupper-Beinhorn Garden

210 West Elsmere Place

Buffalo grass, extensive hardscape and Ong Jars for rainwater all in a lush, tropical setting are just some of the artistic and watersaving features of interest to tourgoers.

Coopman Garden

  • Doe Crest

Hardscape with flagstone paths and seating areas, minimal lawn, mostly groundcover with containers.

Watersaver Landscape Tour

We are busy planning a spectacular yard tour for April 2018! Check back frequently for updates!

Want to nominate your own yard or someone else’s?

email to info@gardeningvolunteers.org for criteria and nomination form.

The tour, one of our biggest annual events, showcases impressive yards that don’t require lots of water to remain beautiful.  Yards have been selected using the following criteria:

• Uniqueness in design, plant material and color

• Plant materials used are appropriate, native and/or drought tolerant species

• Lawn area has been reduced or eliminated and replaced with impervious hardscape, mulch or turf grass that is appropriate for the space
This free event, in partnership with the San Antonio Water System and sponsored by the San Antonio River Authority, started in 2002.  It supports our mission to promote outdoor water conservation through educational outreach within the Bexar County communities.

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