The President’s House, College Yard and the President’s Boxwood Garden at the College of William & Mary were featured on an April 20 broadcast of WTTG FOX 5 DC’s Morning News. FOX 5 News was in Williamsburg last week filming the segment that highlighted Williamsburg’s Garden Tour and Virginia’s Historic Garden Week.
The Williamsburg tour and Virginia garden celebration are annual events. Garden Week began Saturday, April 21 and runs through April 28. It includes more than 250 garden tours across the state. The Williamsburg Garden Tour features a dozen homes and about 15 gardens, including the President’s House and garden, the Sir Christopher Wren Building and for the very first-time, a special tour of the many woody species on the William & Mary campus. The Williamsburg tour is a one-day event: April 24 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Ticket information for the Williamsburg tours is available on the Garden Week website.
"Our tour this year is titled, 'Homes, Gardens, and Civil War History,'" said Terry Buntrock, chairman of the Williamsburg Garden Tour. “We are only doing Civil War history at Colonial Williamsburg and emphasizing Civil War history on the campus.”
Evidence of William & Mary’s rich Civil War history may still be seen today. Musket ball holes from the period are visible on a section of the east side of the Wren Building’s brick exterior. During the war, the Wren Building, the President’s House and the Brafferton -- the three main structures that comprise William & Mary’s Historic Campus -- were incorporated into a line of defensive works that separated Union-held Williamsburg and the lower peninsula from the Confederacy to the west.
On campus, in addition to seeing the Wren Building and the President’s House and garden, tour participants will have the option of either an escorted or self-guided walking tour of more than 300 species and varieties of woody plants located across the College’s campus.
“It’s unbelievable to me that in 80 years we have never actually done a tour of the campus [grounds],” Buntrock said. “We hope now that we have this piece completed it will be a feature of the Williamsburg tour for years to come.”
The woody species tour is presented as part of this year’s Williamsburg Garden Tour as the result of the dedication and hard work of Williamsburg Garden Club member Paula Mooradian and College Arborist Matthew Trowbridge and Greenhouse Supervisor Ben Owen. It is based on The Baldwin Memorial Collection of Woody Species.
Buntrock noted that the William & Mary campus has 54 different species of boxwood – the biggest concentration of species of any place in the United States.
The College's Gardens and Grounds division of Facilities Management cares for specimens in the collection, the President’s Boxwood Garden and the campus landscape as a whole.