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For the past 30 years, it has been an honor and adventure to build the company that blossomed into Page Duke Landscape Architects. We have been fortunate enough to work on amazing projects with clients, craftsmen and artisans from all over the world. Growing Page Duke has helped us become the landscape architects we are today, and it will always be an experience each of us treasures. As we move into the next chapters of our lives, we are excited to share that we have decided to embark on new, separate professional ventures. We greet our diverging paths with no small amount of gratitude for each other and our colleagues, and we each look to the future with excitement. We sincerely thank our clients and community for the support and encouragement they have shown us for so many years.
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For years Ben and Libby Page thought about owning a second home, but the idea was so unformed that they didn't even have a specific location in mind. Then, in the spring of , Libby's mother rented a bus, hired a historian, and took the family out for a tour of Giles County, Tennessee, where Libby's ancestors had lived for generations.Though only an hour away from the couple's Nashville home, it was not an area in which either of the Pages had spent time.
But after a day of viewing farms and family homesteads nestled in leafy, rolling hills, both were so taken with the countryside that they asked the historian to let them know if a piece of land and maybe a farmhouse ever became available.
Barely two weeks later, they got the call: A midth-century Greek Revival house on 54 acres, less than a mile from where Libby's grandmother had grown up, was for sale. Ben, a landscape architect who has designed gardens from North Carolina to New Orleans to San Miguel de Allende, has a lovely walled city garden in Nashville.
But ownership of the country house, which the couple named Brookside, meant that he could indulge in slightly more bucolic—and far more expansive—pursuits. The main garden, a boxwood parterre, is anchored by single-stem Muskogee crape myrtles and planted with grasses and lilies. In the sundial garden within, a bronze hawk sculpture is mounted on a walnut column that's an exact copy of those on the house's front porch. The cutting and vegetable gardens evoke Ben's grandmother's and great-grandmother's gardens in Glasgow, Kentucky, where his own roots are.
They're also where he can be found almost every Saturday. In addition to zinnias, enormous marigolds, and celosia, the cutting garden contains bits of history: The peony collection includes plants from Ben's grandmother's garden, and a dramatic seven sisters rosebush from the original Brookside, the Italianate Revival house where Libby's grandmother grew up.
The rose, which has huge briars, is "vicious," Ben says. Saturday evenings are usually given over to guests, who arrive in time for what the Pages dub the "sunset cruise. Afterward, the group returns to the spacious kitchen to cook dinner, using vegetables from the garden and chickens raised nearby.
Ben says Brookside's "most glamorous period" was in the s and '60s, when a couple from New York raised polo ponies and held tournaments on the property. These days the polo barn serves as a glorified garden shed, but it also did duty at a glamorous event of more recent times.
Three years ago, to celebrate milestone birthdays of both Ben and Libby, as well as their daughter, Florence, the Pages threw a big bash. Dinner was served in a tent in front of the barn—guests' beribboned table cards were tied to tomato cages just outside the entrance, and pots of thyme adorned the tables. Another, larger barn, its interior done up in white, with low upholstered sofas and chairs, was transformed into an after-dinner disco.
It's fitting that an event to mark family birthdays would also serve as a housewarming. After all, Brookside is about nothing if not family. Celebrity Style. Type keyword s to search. Today's Top Stories. Our Favorite Beautiful Bathroom Designs. Where to Buy Plants Online. Photo: William Waldron. This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.
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