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  • About Mélisande's Allée — Dumbarton Oaks
    a second line of trees to the west creating a thirty five foot wide informal allée that led from Lovers Lane pool to the Trompe L oeil The allée was named for the titular character in Claude Debussy s opera Pelléas et Mélisande and it referenced a forest path where the star crossed lover meet in Act 1 In keeping with the romantic fanciful name Farrand designed the allée as a dreamlike woodland To achieve the right effect the width of the brick path between the maples was specifically designed to be narrow and winding which emphasized the surrounding landscape elements and invited solitary exploration Beneath the towering maples Farrand chose short close cropped groundcover that contrasted with the height of the trees Vinca and Japanese honeysuckle predominated with spring blooming highlights of daffodils iris forget me not and grape hyacinth to add to the fairytale woods Farrand tried to evoke In the 1940s there were discussions about widening the path through the allée but Farrand remained adamantly against it and the idea was eventually dropped The scale and length of the allée was paramount because it provided the only vista from the Lovers Lane pool and amphitheater in the

    Original URL path: http://www.doaks.org/library-archives/garden-archives/drawings-and-photographs-by-garden-area/melisandes-allee/about-melisandes-allee (2016-02-18)
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  • Drawings — Dumbarton Oaks
    Home Library Archives Garden Archives Drawings and Photographs by Garden Area Mélisande s Allée Drawings Archive Navigation Garden Archives Home Contents Index Search Refine Help Drawings Info Drawings Document Actions Print this Share Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection 1703 32nd Street NW Washington DC 20007 Site Map Web Accessibility Contact Us Visit Us Staff Directory Employment Rights and Reproductions Staff Login Newsletter Webmail Service Desk 2014 Dumbarton Oaks Washington

    Original URL path: http://www.doaks.org/library-archives/garden-archives/drawings-and-photographs-by-garden-area/melisandes-allee/drawings (2016-02-18)
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  • Historic Photographs — Dumbarton Oaks
    before brick walk looking north Mélisande s Allée measurements view north Brick walk with daffodils 3 Brick walk with daffodils 5 Mélisande s Allée before brick walk looking south Brick and stone walks view south Brick walk with daffodils 1 Brick walk with daffodils 2 Brick walk with daffodils 4 Mélisande s Allée bench Mélisande s Allée walk up to Arbor Terrace Document Actions Print this Share Dumbarton Oaks Research

    Original URL path: http://www.doaks.org/library-archives/garden-archives/drawings-and-photographs-by-garden-area/melisandes-allee/historic-photographs (2016-02-18)
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  • About the North Vista — Dumbarton Oaks
    immediately as too fussy and prone to ugliness in the winter In 1926 she proposed a simple set of five terraces that would form the backbone of all North Vista designs to come Beatrix Farrand s five terrace plan centered on the northern façade of the house All planting and design details functioned to trick the eye and extend the view northward from the tower into a uniform and elongated landscape To accomplish this Farrand replaced all existing groundcover with a carpet of grass and she lined the terraces with dense green plantings mostly box hedges Because the grass covered the tops of the steps between each terrace level the view from the house presented an unbroken line of green The furthest end of the Vista dissolved into a narrow box allée that led to the Clifton hillside and forest beyond The box allée and the terminus of the Vista proved the greatest challenge for Farrand Neither she nor Mildred Bliss felt completely satisfied with the details of the final terraces nor the framing of the view They spent the next thirty years working together and later with the input of Robert Patterson and Ruth Havey to refine the design Although the entire Vista evolved over time the terraces closest to the house quickly gained a formal quality The stairs from the house led directly into the first terrace called the North Court The basic design of the North Court was finalized by the 1930s when flagstones paved the perimeter central walk and French steps Marble benches and balustrades with urn finials were eventually added The designs for these as well as sweeping stone cheekwalls added in 1950 were based on original Armand Albert Rateau drawings commissioned by Mildred Bliss Brick walls with limestone coping enclosed the North Court Until 1940 the brick walls terminated at the North Court balustrade and box hedges took their place in the next level the Cedar Terrace The second terrace gained its named from the two Cedars of Lebanon Cedrus libanotica growing there until the 1930s When the Cedars of Lebanon died they were replaced with Himalayan Cedars Cedrus deodara From the beginning the cedars were the only plantings in this terrace Farrand toyed with the idea of planting beds along the inner base of the box hedges but ultimately she chose to leave unbroken sod The next level stepping down and northward has been called by several unofficial names Due to the fluidity of design details over the years this terrace has been known as the Bench Terrace Tulip Terrace or Intermediate Terrace In the 1920s and 30s it was enclosed by heavy box hedges with tall evergreens to the west to block traffic noise and the view from 32 nd street The box hedges extended through the entire terrace and into the narrowest final sections the North Section or North Bay and the Tunnel When Dumbarton Oaks transitioned to Harvard University in 1940 Beatrix Farrand made a change she and Mildred Bliss

    Original URL path: http://www.doaks.org/library-archives/garden-archives/drawings-and-photographs-by-garden-area/north-vista/about-the-north-vista (2016-02-18)
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  • Drawings — Dumbarton Oaks
    steps at north entrance to house detail Plan showing east end of Bowling Green and west wall of North Vista Plan of North Court General layout of North Garden North Vista section II North Vista plan End for balustrade Console for end of balustrade side elevation North Vista chains Cresting for North Vista gates Cresting for second North Vista gate Finial for North Vista Marble bench for the North Vista

    Original URL path: http://www.doaks.org/library-archives/garden-archives/drawings-and-photographs-by-garden-area/north-vista/drawings (2016-02-18)
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  • About the Orangery — Dumbarton Oaks
    the house He also planted a Ficus pumila in one corner of the Orangery which continues to grow to this day draping over the interior of the entire space When Robert and Mildred Bliss purchased the property Frederick Brooke renovated the Orangery and Beatrix Farrand integrated it with her garden design In the Plant Book she called the building charming and she chose climbing plants like wisteria and ivy that emphasized the windows The Blisses outfitted the Orangery with lead furniture and used it as an entertaining space hosting luncheons and teas under the spreading branches of the fig After the Blisses gave Dumbarton Oaks to Harvard the Orangery began to serve as an entry point for visitors into the gardens Visitors who entered through the 32 nd street gate were greeting by views of the Orangery s south façade and the pre Bliss era magnolia growing on the hillside Garden tours began in the Orangery and Anne Sweeney hosted her garden talks there To ease the building s transition from private to public space Farrand recommended trimming the unruly fig replacing the lead furniture with sturdy rattan and paving the exterior walkways to improve visitor circulation The Orangery continues

    Original URL path: http://www.doaks.org/library-archives/garden-archives/drawings-and-photographs-by-garden-area/orangery/about-the-orangery (2016-02-18)
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  • Drawings — Dumbarton Oaks
    center line of Orangery Dimensions of panel under library Orangery steps Lattice panels for Orangery roof 1 Lattice panel for Orangery roof 2 Orangery roof south and east sides chart to show bamboo screening Measured drawing for paving north of Orangery Finial for awning support north of Orangery Chair outside Orangery Construction drawing for lantern and bracket outside Orangery Rail for steps Library to Orangery Plan of Orangery Sketch for

    Original URL path: http://www.doaks.org/library-archives/garden-archives/drawings-and-photographs-by-garden-area/orangery/drawings (2016-02-18)
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  • About the Orchard — Dumbarton Oaks
    and visual interest Rather than producing fruit she wanted an orchard that served a thematic purpose within the garden scheme all while masking the abrupt steepness of the north facing hillside A cypress and lead arbor bench designed and placed in the Orchard in 1933 34 invited visitors to sit and look down over the carefully crafted vista of apple trees Visitors circulated through the Orchard by way of the Goat Trail path The Goat Trail began at the Urn Terrace curved northeast toward the Arbor Terrace and finally cut through the Orchard where it branched toward the Herbaceous Border in the north and Mélisande s Allée in the east In the Plant Book for Dumbarton Oaks Beatrix Farrand called this curving stairway an informal utility walk Designing in the Arts and Crafts style she built a rustic retaining wall and rough flagstone paved steps Farrand framed the path with jasmine honeysuckle and masses of spring bulbs under the fruit trees along the walkway The portion of the path that led from the top of the hill to the Arbor Terrace was particularly steep and curved sharply The steps coming down the hillside were convenient and provided a good vantage point for overlooking the Orchard however they proved to be dangerously steep In 1946 Farrand advised on a project to repave the steps in an effort to make the pathway safer for garden visitors The flagstones were replaced and the grade of the stairway was softened When Harvard University took over the institution in the 1940s Farrand s vision for the Orchard evolved With scholars and staff occupying Dumbarton Oaks year round Farrand saw the Orchard as providing a much needed source of food She recommended in her Plant Book for Dumbarton Oaks that the existing trees be replaced over

    Original URL path: http://www.doaks.org/library-archives/garden-archives/drawings-and-photographs-by-garden-area/orchard/about-the-orchard (2016-02-18)
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