Brighton Dam’s Azalea Garden
How could I have lived in this area my whole life and never have known about the Brighton Dam’s Azalea Garden? This week while checking my Facebook posts (doesn’t everyone do this?) I came across the most beautiful photos from my friend Nancy Janson. Where in the world was she? Imagine my surprise when she wrote right back and said she was at Brighton Dam!
Of course, I knew where that was and might have even driven by it a time or two, but I never knew about their Azalea Garden. Pretty much my entire life, Spring was for working. Growing up at Behnke’s, we were all expected to work after school and on weekends, and then I got married to, of all things, a nurseryman. Married life was more of the same. You worked in the Spring and were so tired you never even considered visiting places like this azalea garden. Sad to say, but I have never even been to the Cherry Blossom Festival. It was on my to-do list after we closed the garden center, but then COVID came along. Maybe next year I will get there. In the meantime, I will keep exploring and finding treasures like Brighton Dam’s Azalea Garden.
Information On Brighton Dam’s Azalea Garden
In 1959, this garden was created and had over 22 thousand azaleas. While we were walking along the gravel paths, we noticed many new plantings, so I imagine that they keep replacing and adding to the collection. The garden covers 5 acres and includes the most beautiful Kousa Dogwood Trees that, according to the website, were added in the 1990s.
The Brighton Dam Azaleas Garden overlooks Triadelphia Lake, and the morning we walked along the lake was so spectacular. I will need to go back with a book and sit and read on one of the many benches you will find while walking. Just looking at the still water with the birds chirping seems to me to be a perfect place. Here is a video I found on the Brighton Dam’s Azalea Garden website. I believe it was taken many years ago because the azaleas are much taller now.
Memories Of Another Garden
One of the best things was the first thing I saw after we parked and walked across the road to the garden. My grandmother’s favorite garden poem, The Kiss Of The Sun, was there on a huge sign. That started our walk off on a good note, and it only got better. I felt like I had to pinch myself because I kept remembering my grandparent’s private gardens in Burtonsville. He, too, had many many azaleas and other plantings in the small wooded area to the side of his home.I think if the property had been kept up after they passed away and the property was sold, it would have looked similar to what I saw on our walk.
I hope you find time to see this garden which is so close. I know I will be going back even when the blooms are long gone.
Here is the poem that so many including those that walk through this public garden love.
The kiss of the sun for pardon
The song of the birds for mirth
One is nearer to God’s heart in the garden
Than anywhere else on earth
1858 – 1932