Page 40 - South Mississippi Living - March, 2023
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Are you or your garden club looking for a fun day trip to visit beautiful gardens in our state? There is one garden within driving distance from the coast that you do not want to miss! It is Eudora Welty’s House and Garden in Jackson, Mississippi, and it is truly a monument to the Pulitzer Prize winning author. People travel from all over the world to see her gardens. She
was an avid gardener. Welty and her mother, Chestina, designed the garden in 1925 and they enjoyed spending time together in the garden. In Welty’s writings,
she mentions more than 150 types of plants and flowers.
 Her house and garden were left to the state as she never married. It sits right next to Belhaven University. As
I take students in my Creative Writing class each year for a visit, I always find something new to learn. Her garden
has blooming flora all year long, yes,
even during winter. You might want
to check the website below for her “bloom” calendar that will tell you what is scheduled to be blooming during your visit! ( This website also gives you a calendar of special events and tour information such as times and days open for visits.
Much thought went into the process of creating her backyard landscape. The
Welty garden has many plants and flowers that are not available in commercial nurseries. She has tea roses, climbing roses, daylilies, flowering shrubs, native plants and trees, and more than 30 varieties of Welty’s favorite flower, the camellia. Many of the camellias were planted or grafted by Welty herself. So,
in November, I was able to take some students to her house and gardens and look for her beautiful camellias. We encountered the Leila Camellia that is white and huge; it is stunning! Her path to the garden playhouse is delightful! And, as you walk the path, you will meet a friendly cat named Sal who will accompany you!
Speaking of camellias, the Eudora
Welty Garden is recognized as an official stop on the American Camellia Society Gulf Coast Camellia Trail. Her garden in Jackson is one of only two public botanical gardens in the state of Mississippi.
It was amazing to see the camellias growing in November. How can you make this happen in your garden? Winter blooming camellias are native to Japan. This is referenced in its botanical name Camellia Japonica. There are over 30,000 different types of winter blooming camellias. Camellias work well in our planting zones in south Mississippi.
The perfect place to grow camellias is under tall pine trees; they thrive where they get filtered bright light all year. You
40 | March 2023 | SOUTH MISSISSIPPI Living

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