Sites 1, 2 revealed for Stanly County Courtyard & Garden Tour

Across Stanly County the arrival of spring brings an explosion of floral landscapes and the return of outdoor living. To celebrate the beauty of Albemarle and Stanly County, the Stanly County Historical Society will host an encore benefit Courtyard & Garden Tour 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 29.

Proceeds from this rain or shine event will fund educational programs and preservation initiatives of the Stanly County Historical Society, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. This self guided tour will allow access to 10 private and public courtyard and garden spaces stretching from Albemarle to Badin.

The tour features a variety of outdoor spaces including a Spanish influenced courtyard, an English cottage garden, Charleston inspired garden and a wildflower meadow.

Site No. 1 is the home of Richard and Joyce Lambert at 750 Pee Dee Ave., Albemarle. For nearly 20 years, the Lamberts have established and nurtured one of the loveliest lawns in the Pee Dee Avenue Historic District. The classic southern lines of the white brick ranch are accentuated by contrasting green flora of liriope, Pink Knockout roses, Boston fern hanging baskets and white azalea. The rear yard features crape myrtles, hosta, daylilies, and century-old English boxwoods. A brick paver patio with a climbing forsythia pergola completes the setting for alfresco dining and bird watching.

The house is deceiving in that its ranch style belies its age. Around 1950, two small structures were combined to create a more modern home. A portion of the house dates to 1925, while the other part was built before 1900.

Site No. 1 is the home of Richard and Joyce Lambert at 750 Pee Dee Ave., Albemarle. (Contributed)

The Lamberts purchased their home in 2004. At that time, the property had been vacant for a number of years, and the landscape needed attention. After clearing away overgrowth, the couple made plans based on clues from the shrubs and flower beds that emerged the following spring. Their goal was to restore and enhance the landscape to the original 1950 intent. Some of the original boxwoods remain on the property.

Randy Seamone’s 1920’s bungalow at 734 Montgomery Ave., Albemarle, is site No. 2. He purchased this property in 1999 and has made multiple changes to the house and grounds including new siding, rear deck, new windows and new porch railings. The exterior colors highlight the architecture of the home.

The front yard is enclosed with a white picket fence with an arbor leading to the side yard. When he approached the landscaping, he took his inspiration from trips to Charleston, South Carolina. He realized that a yard does not have to be large to be beautiful and there could be much beauty in a small space. Plantings along the border of the fence include dogwood, crepe myrtle, abelia, azaleas and rhododendron. Colorful perennials and annuals along this border bring color throughout all three seasons. The swing and white rocking chairs on the front porch entice one to sit a spell and enjoy the surrounding beauty.

In 2010 he was presented with Albemarle’s Community Appearance Award.

While he continues to make improvements to the front yard, he is now focusing on the rear yard and is always glad to share his “green thumb” secrets.

Advance $15 wristband tickets are available at the Stanly County History Center, 157 N. Second St., Albemarle, or by mail order from Stanly County Historical Society, PO Box 1384, Albemarle, NC 28002.
Pre-paid mail orders will be held at the will call station at the 1852 Isaiah Snuggs House, 112 N. Third St., Albemarle, from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Tickets purchased on the day of the tour will be available for $20 at the Isaiah Snuggs House. All ticket sales are non-refundable donations.

Direct inquiries to Stanlycountyhistory@gmail.com or call 704-986-3777.