Ever been to Green Animals Topiary Garden in Portsmouth?
If you have, I'm betting you can and will vouch enthusiastically for how lovely it is up close and in person. So, with that in mind, if you haven't and you're suffering from a serious case of work/life overload, I highly encourage you to take a mini break and G-O to Green Animals, for all these reasons and more:
- There's A Kennedy Connection: In the late 1940's, Alice Brayton, the daughter of Thomas E. Brayton, who purchased the property back in 1872 as a summer place for his fam, hosted a coming-out party for the then Jackie Bouvier. **Wear your oversized sunnies and white jeans as an homage to Jackie! Throw in the headscarf if you're feeling extra bold. I mean, after all, it was her bday this week.**
- They Give Back: They grow over 1K pounds of veggies and fruits a year and contribute them to a local charity for women and children in need in the area.
- Strong Daycation Potential: It's the perfect spot to either put down your phone and reconnect with the natural world (There are 35+ flowerbeds, paths, arbors, trees, and herb/veggie gardens to explore.) OR keep it in hand and snap mad photos to upload later (especially if you're an aspiring or current blogger or Insta-blogger). You're the boss applesauce.
- It's The Original Pokemon GO...Kind Of: There's a laundry list of topiary animals and objects to look out for. My personal fav is the giraffe. (Photo above.) We also found a reindeer, an overstuffed chair, a dog, and two cats (I think they're kitties?) in what is essentially the oldest such garden in the entire country. Two words - totally impressive.
- Now For The Victorian Mansion: It's a lot less opulent than any of the nearby Newport Mansions (Like the Manses, Green Animals is also under The Preservation Society umbrella.), but if you have time after touring the grounds, it's definitely worth a walk thru. We loved the bedrooms, the French wall paper, and the antique toy collection. **Among the dozens of dolls, which some have described as creepy, there's an adorbs stuffed giraffe named for Alice Brayton's brother-in-law George, who helped create the original topiaries back in the 1940's.**
Ciao for Now,
Photo Credits: All photos courtesy of PattyJ.com