(This video is closed-captioned in English and Spanish.)
(Este video tiene subtítulos en inglés y español.)
Farrand designed the Urn Terrace (at that time known as the Box Terrace) to be
an introduction to the Rose Garden, rather than a garden of importance on its own account, but it was significantly modified by Ruth Havey in the 1950s. In the northern portion, Havey replaced Farrand’s simple straight lines of boxwood (still remaining in the southern portion) with curved brick lines filled with ivy. The pebblework at the base of the urn was laid down in 1958 by Vincent De Benedetto as a test pattern for the large mosaic to be placed in the Pebble Garden.
The urn is a copy in stone of an eighteenth-century terra-cotta urn that Mrs. Bliss purchased in France. The original was removed and placed in the Garden Library when the terra-cotta proved too soft to withstand Washington’s winters.
Mouse over the image to see the transformation of the Urn Terrace between 1931 and the present.
More Exhibit Items
The brick and limestone ribbon walks simulate the quality of flowing cloth.
This small greenhouse is one of the oldest structures still standing on the grounds of Dumbarton Oaks.
The wide, shady branches of an enormous beech tree stretch over this quiet enclosed space.
This grassy terrace, shaded by a tall oak tree, provides panoramic view of the entire estate.
This small room features custom stonework, wrought-iron furniture, and a fountain ornamented with various constellations.
The swimming pool and beautifully decorated loggia attest to Dumbarton Oaks’ history as a private residence.
Blooming forsythia turns this corner of the gardens bright yellow at the beginning of spring.
When the trees blossom in springtime, this hillside becomes one of the gardens’ most magical spaces.
Hidden near the edge of the gardens, Lilac Circle offers a secluded spot for rest and contemplation.
Elaborate stonework and low flowerbeds play off trellises of wisteria in this stately courtyard.
The Urn Terrace serves as an ivied transition between the Beech Terrace, Box Walk, and Rose Garden.
A riotous variety of roses fills this sunny space between the Urn and Fountain Terraces.
A traditional flower garden in a blend of English Cottage and Arts and Crafts style.
This narrow brick walk wends through a dreamlike woodland spotted with daffodils and hyacinths.
A shallow pool sits at the bottom of a small brick amphitheater, bordered by a stand of bamboo.
The story of a terrier given to a Neapolitan girl by a French admiral inspired this column.