The rear yard was formerly the clay tennis court for the surrounding Ross family compound. In 1962 Barney and Zee Freiburg built their dream house with a porch and terrace that overlooked a lovely garden in the rear. They planted the blue atlas cedar when it was only a few feet tall. However, much to the current homeowners' dismay, prior to selling their house they ripped out their garden and gave away all their plants. Carter van Dyke and Lynn Reynolds purchased the property in 1988 and commenced a complete makeover of the home, both inside and out. The garden was designed over a weekend in 1990 to accommodate the historic Dolington Library, which had to be rescued within a few days or else be used in a fire department exercise. It now serves as a charming reading nook tucked quietly in this backyard oasis.
The yard is divided into several distinct “rooms” dictated by the unusual shape of the yard and the presence of several large trees on the property. Two formal axes, between the raised patio and a cedar at the rear of the yard and between the Library and arbor, give structure to the design. Perennials and annuals surround the grass oval formed by the axes. The garden is always a work in progress. As with all of Carter van Dyke Associates’ projects, the garden is organic. As gardeners and landscape architects we are believers of the magic of compost.