Gardens Through the Looking Glass, Terra’s fifth Summer Garden show at the Monticello Sculpture Gardens, celebrates the 150-year anniversary of Lewis Carroll’s “Alice in Wonderland” books while connecting people to plants through garden design. Located on the campus of Lewis and Clark Community College, the show also gives a nod to the school’s origins, the Monticello College, which was founded during the Victorian era.
The Looking Glass show is split into two zones to celebrate Alice’s Wonderland and the Monti’s Victorian era. The “Wonderland Zone” showcases new plant introduction and recent hybridizations introduced in the ornamental horticulture industry. The colors, textures, variety and whimsy of the newest releases are arranged in novel fashions, illustrating the range of variety within a species, and exploring novel styles of gardening, such as vertical green walls and exotic succulents/cacti displays.
The “Victorian Zone” showcases heirloom plants of the Victorian era and those that were found on the Monticello College campus. Traditional gardening styles such as a knot garden, giant water lily garden, eyebrow and island beds, rose gardens, herb gardens and sun parlors are also on display.
Beyond discussing differing gardening styles, Gardens Through the Looking Glass features interpretive signage that identify plants and includes a small narrative that compares and contrasts the present-day life of a Lewis and Clark student with that of a Monti girl through campus culture, curriculum, transportation, food, and technology.