Preserving our landscape here at Drayton Hall requires constant effort. Too much or too little rain, a wind storm, or the growth of an invasive species can all threaten our historic landscape features. To meet these challenges and those posed by the simple passing of time, we’ve implemented several programs that target specific elements of the landscape, including our 300 year old live oaks, the 18th century system of earthen embankments and canals, and our historical vistas.
A comprehensive maintenance plan implemented 3 years ago has yielded great benefits for many of the centuries old oaks that stand vanguard over the landscape. Caring for these trees involves not only regular pest protection and intense fertilization, but also selective pruning to lessen the threat of wind damage and the installation of lightning rods to protect trees during our many summer electrical storms.
Over the past few years our landscape team has also cleared invasive trees and shrubs from the earthen embankments and canals that make up the over 200-year-old water network surrounding the main house and lawn. Clearing these plants out removes obstructions to the water network and reduces root damage to the embankments themselves.
Together these efforts have highlighted many of the sites historical vistas, including our guests favorite- the one you see when you come down the main oak
. Thanks to the removal of scrub growth and corrective pruning, the live oaks seem to draw visitors down the road even more so than before, eventually opening up to reveal a panorama dotted with the noble architecture of their trunks and limbs supporting a cloud of leaves and moss.