Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Pan and Chloris in Airlie Gardens

The Greek Gods Pan and Chloris, or better known as the Roman Gods Fauna and Flora, are timeless Gods keeping watch over Airlie Gardens in Wilmington, NC.

Airlie Gardens dates back to 1884, when German landscape architect Rudolf  Topel transformed the property of wealthy Mr. and Mrs. Jones into a picturesque garden.

The majestic Live Oak named 'Airlie Oak' dates back to 1545 and is the North Carolina State Champion Live Oak, one of the largest trees of its kind in the Carolinas.

The formal gardens date back to 1901 to the 1920s with reported half million azaleas and 5000 camellias, with many still blooming today

In 1948 the Corbett Family purchased the Airlie property and they opened the garden to the public several times a year, especially during the azalea bloom.

In 1999 Airlie Garden was sold to the county and is now preserved for public use.

The Butterfly house is home to 11 native butterfly species, useful in that one can apply the information to the own back yard

Beautiful butterflies made of copper

We missed the Azaleas in bloom, but the Hydrangeas, Chaste trees, and Magnolias just to name a few, sure made up for it 

The Bottle Chapel sits in the Minnie Evans Sculpture Garden, constructed with over 4000 colorful bottles of all shapes and sizes

front view

back view

inside corner

Pergolas constructed of concrete to withstand time are covered with vines

Bradley Creek and Airlie Lake, a tidal creek ecosystem and a fresh-water lake are part of Airlie Gardens

This Garden is not so much a plant collection but a beautiful park with low maintenance seasonal flowers, blooming trees, sweeping lawns and sculptures.  Geese, swans, turtles and other critters call this garden their home. Just beautiful and well worth a visit.


  1. What a beautiful place. Thank you for sharing.

  2. This place is awesome. I would place it in my top 3 favorite gardens.

  3. And what gardens are number one and two? :)

  4. The garden is amazing and so are the foliage inside it. The giant butterfly piqued my curiosity – how did you do it? Although it seems out of place, it is a unique feature of the garden, I love the butterfly house, the pillared walkway and the lake. I wish I could have a place like this in my place.