Photos: July 19, 2008

>> Sunday, August 10, 2008

Up the road from me, heading towards downtown Charlotte, is the McGill Rose Garden. This is something that I never knew existed until I moved to the NoDa area, despite the fact that I've spent probably more than twenty-five of my thirty-six years in this city. And I didn't actually get a chance to pay it a visit until a few weeks ago, July 19th of this year.

The history, sketched out on the garden's website (linked in the previous paragraph), is that the property used to be a coal yard, until it was purchased by a wealthy couple and the wife decided to plant roses. At some point, the property was made a public park and is now owned and administered for the public by a non-profit.

The context of the garden is significant: this is a garden of flowers and statuary located in what was a coal yard along the railroad tracks, which are still in use. The city transit bus depot is nearby. Much of the immediate area was used by mills half a century or more ago, and much of the local housing originally consisted of mill homes (the adjacent neighborhood is not, let's put it this way, one of the wealthier Charlotte neighborhoods). If you turn left immediately upon exiting the McGill Garden, you quickly come to the exits for the inner beltway--I277--with the corporate skyscrapers of downtown Charlotte immediately beyond. The location is represented to some degree in the pictures below by the chain link fence topped with barbed wire that secures this urban park at night, and by the freight car which has been permanently parked within the garden itself as a kind of symbolic decoration.













2 comments:

Random Michelle K Sunday, August 10, 2008 at 10:52:00 AM EDT  

So you didn't answer the most important question, which is whether the place smelled lovely!

It looks like she grew old fashioned roses, so I'd think it would have smelled very good.

Old fashioned roses aren't as attractive as hybrid tea roses, but tend to smell better.

Did she grow other members of the rose family, like apples and cherries, or just roses?

Eric Sunday, August 10, 2008 at 11:57:00 AM EDT  

The smell was nice, but I'm not a connoisseur of smells, really, and my pollen allergy began to act up and shortened the shoot.

She had a huge variety of roses there, including (I think) tea roses and hybrids.

No apples or cherries that I saw, just the flowers.

It's a nice little nook.

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