Ashintully Gardens

The LeBlanc wedding was held at 3pm on June 8, 2013 at Ashintully Gardens in Tyringham, MA, a property of The Trustees of Reservations.

The 30-year creation of composer John McLennan, Ashintully Gardens are a serene retreat in the Berkshires surrounded by forested hills and traversed by a rushing stream. Mr. McLennan’s emphasis on elegant form and proportion in music is expressed through his garden design, which helped Ashintully earn the Hunnewell Medal from the Massachusetts Horticultural Society.

The gardens blend several natural features – a stream, native deciduous trees, a rounded knoll, and rising flanking meadows – into an ordered arrangement with both formal and informal beauty. Among the formal you’ll find the Fountain Pond, Pine Park, Rams Head Terrace, Bowling Green, Regency Bridge, and Trellis Triptych. Urns, columns, and statuary ornament the garden, while foot bridges, foot paths, stone stairs, and grassy terraces connect various parts of the garden.

A short trail up the hill leads to the ruins of the a Georgian-style mansion. In 1903, Robb and Grace de Peyster Tytus discovered the Tyringham Valley on their honeymoon. Soon after purchasing the 1,000 acres that they named Ashintully (Gaelic meaning “on the brow of the hill”), they built a Georgian-style mansion on the hill. The prominent home came to be known as the Marble Palace among local residents because of the way the pure white sand that was used for the stucco reflected the sunlight. In 1952, it burned down after being inhabited by two generations of the Tytus-McLennan family, but its Doric columns remain as testament to a bygone era. The present-day ruins command a striking view of distant Berkshire Hills.

A half-mile woodland trail leads to the ruins of the Marble Palace. Moderate walking. From these ruins, visitors can take in a distant view north through the Tyringham Valley.

Ashintully Gardens is located at Sodem Road, Tyringham, MA.  From the Mass Turnpike (Exit 2), take Rt. 20 South, bear right onto Rt. 102, and immediately left onto Tyringham Rd. Follow for approximately 6.5 mi., passing through Tyringham Center (road then becomes Main Rd.), until you come to intersection with Sodem Rd. Turn left and park on the lawn off the road as directed by signs. Google map here.

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