A trip to The Arbor Gate is simply a rite of passage—a pilgrimage towards color, creativity and inspiration.
Jul 16, 2018
This is the second in a series of articles about fun and easy summer day trips that are near and dear to our Woodlander hearts.
Grab a friend and head out on Gosling Road towards Tomball. Then hook a right turn on FM 2920. In about 30 minutes you’ll find yourself at The Arbor Gate: a garden center, plant nursery, outdoor art gallery, home gift shop and educational center.
You can set off in any direction to begin this intoxicating garden experience or let an Arbor Gate staff member or one of the erudite cats that lives in the magical garden lead the way.
A massive Artful Garden connects all the various areas that compose The Arbor Gate property so as you pop in and out of different places, please look both up and down and side‐to‐side so you don’t miss anything! From bird houses decorated like gothic churches to metal, flying pig sculptures to an oak tree wearing a giant silver necklace to flocks of plastic flamingos jutting out of lime green and deep purple ground coverings to old vinyl records snapped in half being cleverly used as flower bed borders—a wild sensory overload awaits!
Near the front parking lot, you’ll spot the Large Container Pots Area arranged by color in an ode to Pantone’s playbook. These handcrafted artistic pots range in size and shape—from classic to contemporary and come in both matte and glossy finishes. It’s fun to find the humorous pots mixed into the groupings. Look for the cobalt blue giant’s foot pot!
The Herb and Bulb Area will make you want to start a Pinterest board on creative herb planters! There is so much to look at and learn. Not only do they have an incredible selection of herbs and seasonal bulbs, but they show you clever ways to display them in your yard, patio or kitchen window.
The Rose Arbor Area is not to be missed. Rows and rows of brightly colored beautiful blooms call out to you from terra cotta pots like doggies in a window. They even offer a line of roses extensively tested by Texas A&M University for hardiness, long bloom time, and easy care (perfect for beginning gardeners).
The Hospitable Home Shop is located in an old house behind the fairytale gazebo (where a class called “Plant Containers: Thrill, Fill and Spill” is underway). It is packed full of tea towels, wreaths, lamps and whimsical wall art all presented in a festive way that makes you feel like it’s Christmas in July—and you can’t help but smile. Everything is so interesting and wonderfully overgrown as you exit the back door and are walking past vast ivy‐covered fences punctuated by butterfly shaped benches with real butterflies resting on them.
The Shady Plant Area is incredible too—the robust row of hanging ferns so large they look like a group of green octopi swinging on a wire. It makes you wonder how does that tiny hook hold each one up?
A trip to The Arbor Gate is a simply a rite of passage—a pilgrimage towards color, creativity and inspiration. It’s an outdoor museum where owner/artist Beverly Welch and her staff of Master Gardeners use colorful plants, flowers, grasses and outdoor sculpture to delight the earth and all its inhabitants.
Follow this up with lunch at The Whistle Stop Tea Room in Old Town Tomball before you head home with your new green thumb and a trunk full of ideas.
View more photos from The Arbor Gate below.
(Photos will automatically scroll or click on the small arrows on the right or left to view all.)