Ananias Dare St. home recognized as Roanoke Island Garden Club’s Garden of the Season
Published 7:12 am Friday, June 28, 2019
By Christine Dorsey
Katia Busquets and her husband Theodore Nigro took a vacation in spring of 2014 to enjoy the beauty of Atlantic coastal communities. They visited Beaufort, SC and Wilmington and then they stopped in Manteo. That was May; by July they owned the property at 311 Ananias Dare St., Roanoke Island Garden Club’s spring Garden of the Season. Since then they have split their time between their homes in Norfolk and Manteo, trying to spend every weekend on Roanoke Island. And they have worked in their garden!
Entering the gate of the white picket fence surrounding their property gives one a feeling of calm. A brick walk, widened by Nigro with old bricks found around the property, leads to a front porch of the house built in 1919 for US Lifesaving Serviceman Etheridge Midgett and his wife Essie Liverman. Potted dwarf nandinas, the welcoming plant, tempt visitors to relax on the wide front porch. But the garden beckons.
On either side of the walkway, tall tea olives scent the air. The flowerbeds also contain azaleas, knockout roses and more nandina. Busquets admires symmetry and perhaps a bit of whimsy. When a dogwood tree died, it was trimmed and used as a backdrop for one of the many statues that grace the yard. One on either side of the walkway, two crimson red crape myrtles, with their deep scarlet leaves, promise bright red blossoms.
The side yard, fronting on Wingina, hosts an array of roses from the palest of pinks to coral to red. They vary in variety from knockout to long stem. It is easy to guess that hydrangeas are Busquets’ favorite flower. Oak leaf, lace cap and bog leaf line the inside of the fence waiting their turn to steal the show.
Paying homage to their trip to Beaufort and Wilmington are two palms that appear to feel right at home in Manteo. A white wrought iron loveseat the couple has had for years invites a rest, but only a short one, as there is so much more to see. Day lilies line the pickets leading to a lovely spreading maple that will turn orange in the fall. A glossy leafed gardenia will soon perfume the air around a fire pit and chairs. You can tell this is a place the family likes to gather: oyster shells, tossed during family feasts, litter the outside of the fence. What yard would be complete without an herb garden and Busquets’ is nestled under another deceased dogwood. This one is trimmed to hold a charming array of birdhouses
Are there future plans for the garden? Perhaps paint the fence, add rolling gates into the stone driveway or maybe add some pine tags beneath plants. This, like any garden, always offers a variety of things to do, but also invites you to sit and enjoy the fruits of your labors.