Fall in CCRHD

The Court Chemeketa Residential Historic District (CCRHD) is one great neighborhood.  It’s close to downtown, to Willamette University, to the State Capitol and campus, walk-able and tree lined…but best of all it’s just a neighborhood of exceptional people and staunch GARDENERS.  Last week in the middle of a beautiful but scarily warm and sunny fall week (the time of year when climate change is pleasant), I went over to see progress on the Byrd House (correct historic name the George Collins House)…being changed and restored by Connie Strong…

Dr. William Byrd moved the house from downtown to this location (14th and Chemeketa) in 1906, and I well remember his daughter Martha Byrd Blau who lived in the house until her death.  When Connie Strong bought the house a couple of years ago it needed foundation work and massive restoration.  She removed some walls (controversial for some of us who like the old “texture” to remain) and updated all the mechanical systems.  Along the way people have stolen her old bricks for garden paths, broken into the basement, and made her process even more difficult.  Connie though is thankful for neighbors who have looked out for her house (and even videoed the brick thieves) and contacted her when anything seemed amiss.  Last week was the last time the walls would be open before the drywall crew arrives so I thought I’d walk through…

Connie removed the wall that formerly formed a hallway. leading back to the kitchen..the old double parlor on the right…

all walls and ceiling were removed on the second floor for new wiring and plumbing and a reconfiguration of space.

the shower is ready almost…

and here the supports will be removed after some more structural work is done…hope she’ll keep the floor…

It will be fun to watch the house evolve…

…and since I was out and about I visited some of my neighbors’ gardens, horrifying most of them who wished I’d come when the gardens were at their most beautiful…but I kind of like this slide-into-winter moment…Aislinn has removed her front yard grass in favor of all natives (and she’s a botannical artist as well as a gardener)

while Lois has removed her grass in favor of lavender.

Joan and Evan do mostly vegetables with lots of pots in the spaces between…

nests…

John and Juli have planted a large rose garden on the side and a huge peony garden behind….

and Gigi and Marshall, though only here two years, have turned a plain grass-only yard into quite a garden…

Fairy garden for a grandchild…

and these amazing “Phantom” hydranges with huge conical panicles..

Our garden is looking pleasant…

with these left-overs from the clematis…

fall clean up has begun…

and the giant hydrangea produced a lot of flowers this year…

We got out this nice Oscar Hukari painting…Hukari migrated to Hood River, Oregon, from Finland about 1918.

the signs of fall are everywhere…

time to scamper outside and get to work…

 

 

 

 

 

5 Comments

  1. I dreamed last night we still lived on Court Street! Sweet days of bringing home babies every two years while trying to garden, paint the house, make a meal, steal a nap; lovely memories of our time on Court St.

  2. What a magical tour thru your lovely neighborhood. A real treat for someone like me who loves old houses and beautiful gardens. Thanks again Bonnie for a terrific blog.

  3. Lovely post, Bonnie! I love those little fairies! Our fall hasn’t been very lovely this year…. the weather too warm then the hurricane which made a grand mess… which means that really enjoyed yours!😀

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