DC Guide: The Gardens of Dumbarton Oaks

I couldn’t really capture the beauty of the gardens at Dumbarton Oaks in just a couple of images, so I hope you’ll indulge me with a few more photos!  The gardens were designed over the course of 30 years by landscape artist Beatrix Farrand – today the gardens feature wisteria everywhere, multiple garden terraces, an indoor “orangerie,” and beautifully landscaped flower beds.  So pretty!


Continue reading below for more from the gardens at Dumbarton Oaks…





The gardens are currently hosting two amazing art installations – the first (above) features crystals and wire arranged in cloud-like formations.  The crystals send sparkly rainbows all over the fountain terrace when the sun is shining, but is a stunning installation even on an overcast afternoon.



I really just couldn’t get enough of these amazing sculptural installations – made entirely from sticks – by Patrick Dougherty.  They’re just so incredibly beautiful and erie with a powerful sense of movement.  Sadly, I don’t think it will be at Dumbarton Oaks much longer but I wish they would keep it there forever!


Photo Credits: Nole Garey for Oh So Beautiful Paper

  1. How cool! We had our maternity photos taken in Dumbarton Oaks, including a shot next to that tree with the amazing roots. The garden is like a hidden gem in the middle of the city. And I was at University of Michigan in the late 90s when Patrick Dougherty had an installation there. I am still struck by the beauty of his work.

  2. That clinches it. All the time I’ve been in D.C., and I STILL haven’t visited Dumbarton!!! So wrong! New resolution: I will go there this spring/summer. Thanks for the gorgeous pics (and the extra shove). I’ve heard the home’s interiors are truly marvelous too.

  3. Gorgeous. There’s a Patrick Dougherty installation at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, too, and it’s incredible. Looks like you had a great visit! 😉

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