In the Simmons’ garden, one is greeted by pots of Bougainvillea, Crown of Thorns and Anthuriums in full bloom, neatly trimmed hedges and expertly pruned shrubs. To the east of the house, one marvels at the profusion of flowering plants and shrubs with immaculately manicured lawns surrounding the house and continuing into the orchard. There is a small aviary with many kinds of birds, a shade house with spectacular Orchids in full bloom, while enormous baskets of Breadfruit Fern thrive in the shade under the trees from which they hang. Along the fence in the orchard Bougainvillea of every shade compete with each other providing a riot of colour. On the other side of the orchard purple Lantana (Sage) and colourful bedding plants spill over the wall into the lower terrace. The orchard hosts a variety of fruit trees including Guava, Mango, Barbados Cherry while to the north of the house there is a grove of stately Banana trees. The house faces west affording a panoramic view of the west coast with large pots of spectacular Bougainvillea, and Ixora in every colour.The Barbados Horticultural Society is very grateful to the Simmons for giving us the privilege of sharing their beautiful garden with our patrons.
Directions to Gibbs Hill:
From Bridgetown and the south, on Highway 2A turn left at sign Gibbs Hill, Rock Dundo, Gordon Greendige School and from the north turn right at this same sign. Continue downhill following the vivid yellow BHS signs to Traffic Mirror on the pole next to the Gibbs Hill sign, turn right, parking will be available on the left along this road and the gardens are on the second road on the left, again BHS signs will be evident.
From Bridgetown and the south, on Highway 1 (the coast road), approximately 1km after the “Entering the Parish of St. Peter Sign” turn right by the yellow house with green roof, sign Highway 2A, Gibbs Glade, Rock Dundo. From the north turn left at this same sign, continue up the hill to Traffic Mirror on pole next to the Gibbs Hill sign, turn left, parking will be available on the left along this road and the gardens are on the second road on the left. BHS vivid yellow signs will be there to guide you.
Home of Mr. & Mrs. Charles Packer, The Anchorage, Gibbs Hill, St Peter
This lush garden is a true tropical paradise, interestingly landscaped inviting one to explore each area. There are many varieties of palms including Traveller’s Palm (Ravanella Madagascarensis), Bismarkia Nobilis (both male and female), Fishtail, Ponytail, Rhapis and Sealing Wax Palm. Many varieties and colours of Heliconias and Gingers can be seen throughout the garden, including the much admired and sought after pendulaheliconia “Sexy Pink” as well as Torch Gingers. Crotons, Ixora, Kalanchoe, Hibiscus, vibrant Cordylines and an assortment of bedding plants surround palms and flowering trees. Bromeliads, Orchids and numerous ferns abound, some clinging to their “host trees”. On the deck, a small waterfall tumbles into the pond containing Lotus and Water Lilies and on the other side there are numerous ferns including Staghorn (Platycerium), Bird’s Nest Fern, Tree Fern and an interesting collection of Begonias. East of the house are pots of Desert Roses in every colour.The love of gardening and all that nature has to offer combined with Charles’ vast knowledge of the many species and varieties of tropical plants are very evident in his garden. This garden is next door to Keith and Lucille Simmons’ garden. To get to this garden please follow the same directions given for the Simmons’ garden.
Admission charges include both gardens – Non members $15 and paid up members $10 and children under 12 years are free