Debra Prinzing

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Sublime and serene Idaho hideaways

Wednesday, July 30th, 2008

Rosemarie B.’s glorious river view

Garden touring is *work*, people. That”s what I keep telling my husband, at least.

Last weekend, Ms. Idaho Gardener (aka Mary Ann Newcomer or the Diva of Dirt) hosted me for a strenuous garden-touring workout. I think we visited 14 gardens, plus or minus, in 24 hours – on our Sun Valley-Ketchum, Idaho tour.

Now what good thing did I do to deserve this kind of spectacular treatment? Hmmm. I told my husband that the 3-day trip from LA to Idaho was a self-indulgent “getaway” that I planned in anticipation of his 12-day (yes twelve days) getaway in August to go to the Beijing Olympics. That was kind of a snarky thing to say. But it certainly got me a ticket to the airport!

Mary Ann (seen here on the right, walking and talking with talented Sun Valley-Los Angeles gardener Kathleen Phelan) has been raving about Sun Valley’s Sawtooth Botanical Garden summer tour for a couple of years, enticing me with the descriptions of residential landscapes in such a beautiful place. Surrounded by awe-inspiring mountains, under intense sunshine, and just far enough away from the rat race for creativity to flourish. . . the gifted and adventurous gardeners here blew me away. We had a tres bien time. Our local hostess, Julie Caldwell, made it all the more enjoyable by adding laughter, taking us to great eateries, and navigating our side trips. Of course, I was on the lookout for Stylish Sheds, or reasonable facsimiles of such. And I was not disappointed. Here are a few of the creative shelters that we found: