Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The remains of a holly farm

In 1902, a holly farm was established in Yarrow Point, a narrow peninsula north of Bellevue on the East side of Lake Washington. At some stage, this farm was the largest supplier of holly in the United States, providing cheerful materials for Christmas decorations and wreaths for the whole country. Holly farming at Yarrow Point ended in the 1960’s, and the area was gradually built over with houses. The street name of Holly Lane reveals where the farm was situated.
Some of the original hollies still remain, huge and beautiful with gnarled, thick trunks, and branches carrying bright, red berries. It is wonderful to see them as main attractions of the gardens they stand in, hopefully for many years to come.
To pick up the theme, many house owners at Yarrow Point have planted holly hedges, some of which are now over 4 meters (12 feet) high, providing birds with excellent hiding and feeding places throughout the winter season. In these times of total eradication of all old - both houses and gardens - when new residences are built, it is lovely to see these examples of appreciation for the local history in Yarrow Point.


Sunita Mohan said...

I love that first photo of holly. I've never seen it here but I'm sure if it did grow here it would soon become a favourite in all our Indian festivals too. Its so vibrant!
Its a real pity that this farm is being taken over by buildings but are there many more such farms in your part of the world?

The Intercontinental Gardener said...

Hi Sunita,
I just love the bright berries too, shining in the cold weather. I can think they would be a success in India, but it might bee too hot there for them to survive. There is still a lovely farm on an island near Seattle,, and probably even other places, as holly still is one of the most popular Christmas decorations.

Anonymous said...

I too am not much of a club person - didn't last in camp fire girls very long, just like your girl scouts experience! I just thought we could give it a try , folks with at least some common interests, see if it's fun. And if anyone wants to come early, they can avail themselves of the Miller Library's riches, which I've heard are wonderful. Hope to see you there but of course no pressure!