Everyday Gardeners

Plant. Grow. Live.

Northwind Perennial Farm, a destination nursery

Anyone who has visited Lurie Gardens at Millenium Park in Chicago has a connection to Northwind Perennial Farm. Roy Diblik, one of the business partners in Northwind, supplied the plants for Lurie Gardens. Roy also designed and planted the landscape at Grand Geneva Resort in Lake Geneva, WI, just a few miles away from the nursery.

It’s certainly worth detouring off the main highway to visit Northwind Perennial Farm. On a recent press trip to the area as a guest of Lake Geneva and the Walworth County Visitors Bureau, I managed to sneak away from planned events for a quick visit to the nursery. And although I arrived just at closing time, Colleen Garrigan, who runs the garden shop, welcomed me and graciously allowed me to stroll the grounds at my leisure. The garden center season was winding down, but I was able to see much of the handiwork of Steve Coster, landscape designer, and the third partner in this outstanding operation, as well as the artistic flair Colleen brings to displays, expertly combining plants and garden ornaments.

The trio of owners draws on the heritage of the farm and area, specializing in native perennials, local materials, and country cottage garden accessories. Next time you’re in southeast Wisconsin or northeast Illinois, see for yourself what Northwind Perennial Farm is all about. Here are a few photos that I took to whet your appetite.

It appears that everyone is headed to Northwind Perennial Farm, including this bantam rooster leading a parade of statuary chickens!

An open barn door frames a fall floral arrangement displayed on a grand piano.

A white picket fence draped with black-eyed Susan vine defines the border of the cottage garden display garden.

Vintage finds are displayed on the wall of a shed.

Miscanthus and persicaria bring color and texture to the display garden in autumn.

Leaf imprints in concrete birdbaths are permanent. The fallen leaves are temporary.

I love how this pyramid of field stone echoes the shape of the baldcypress and spruce trees behind it.

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