Vintage landscape: Birdsnest, Virginia

Bird's Nest Tavern, FBJohston, 1930s, Library of Congress “Old Birds’ Nest Tavern, Marionville vic., Northampton County, [on the Eastern Shore of] Virginia,” ca. 1930s, by Frances Benjamin Johnson, via Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division. (Marionville was also known as Birdsnest.)

Beautiful summer meadow around the house. . .

Johnston’s notes on the photograph call the building a “sailors’ tavern.” It was probably one half to two miles from the creeks and marshes of Hog Island Bay on the Atlantic Ocean, maybe closer.

Her notes also say that it was “the first three story house in the country [county?].”

According to a 1927 economic and social survey of Northampton County, “[f]rom the low room in the middle of this building originated the name of ‘Bird’s Nest’.”

Unfortunately, I can’t find anything to indicate that it has survived to the present day.

When the world turns completely upside down
You say we’ll emigrate to the Eastern Shore
Aboard a river-boat from Baltimore;
We’ll live among wild peach trees, miles from town, . . .
We’ll swim in milk and honey till we drown.

— Elinor Wylie, from “Wild Peaches

Something to read

Heat map in today’s Washington Post.

First, I’ll show you this weather map from The Washington Post, which predicts that D.C. will be about the hottest place in the country  today and tomorrow (plus “the air is so humid you could probably wring water out of it”).

In the same paper, Adrian Higgins has an interesting article, “When it rains, it restores,” on three home rain gardens in our area, with a good illustration on how to create one.

Anne Raver, in the New York Times, writes about Philadelphia landscape architect Margie Ruddick’s choice to grow a “wild” front yard, which earned her a summons from the city (later dropped).

Photo by Victory Gardens of Tomorrow, via the LA Times.

In the Los Angeles Times garden blog, there is an article on using weeds to protect and improve a community garden, “Long Beach garden fends off pests with stealth weapon: weeds. “

It’s followed by information on great new victory garden posters.  To order, click here.

Got a chain saw?  There’s a photo of a really beautiful log garden wall in the slideshow accompanying “How to make a walled garden,” by Bunny Guinness in The Telegraph.

This is from last week, but The Baltimore Sun garden blog has video and photos of the winners of its 2011 Garden Contest.

Here’s hoping for cooler weather next week. . . .