General MacArthur white pine - Yew Dell Gardens

A visit to the Yew Dell Gardens in Oldham County, Kentucky proved to be a most enjoyable day trip.

Yew Dell Garden entrance
This is a picture of the Red Tobacco Barn at the entrance to the Gardens.

One famous tree was identified as a General MacArthur white pine. General MacArthur had moved around a lot and it was hard to pin down any tree where he might have lived. In 1945 the state of Wisconsin named the biggest white pine after MacArthur who gave his home address as "Milwaukee" even though he never lived there. The story goes that a firing squad was called in to shoot the pine cones, and thus the seeds, from the top of the dying pine tree which had been struck by lightening.

I am told there are also some Johnny Appleseed trees on the grounds. In fact the majority of the Johnny Appleseed apple seedlings that Stan LeMaster planted, or shipped to be planted, were propagated at Yew Dell Gardens.

white pine, General MacArthur

The present day gardens were originally the home of the late Theodore Klein and his family. Mr. Klein was a renowned nurseryman and was Stan Lemaster's partner in the historical tree project. While the Yew Dell Gardens do not currently emphasize the historical tree project it is very much related to the subject matter of this blog.

Stan with nurseryman Theodore Klein

If it were not for the partnership with Mr. Klein much of the propagation and delivery of the living legacy trees would have been impossible. Mr. Klein is credited with bringing over sixty (60) new plant species to life. When visiting the Yew Dell Gardens last weekend I was fortunate enough to meet Mr. Klein's daughter Marian Klein Koehler. Marian granted permission to use Mr. Klein's photo on this blog so I very much appreciate her and all of her kindness. Many photos in the historical tree project folder have Stan and Theodore together and they complimented each other perfectly for the famous tree project. This particular picture was gleaned from the Monogram magazine published by the General Electric Company in the spring of 1989.

All manner of plants, flowers, bushes, and trees can be found at Yew Dell. The grounds are open to the public and are simply immaculate and the trip is well worth the nominal entrance fee of $7.00US per adult, $5.00US senior citizens and children under twelve (12) years old are admitted free. Memberships are also available.

There is even a stone castle showing off the artisanship of the Klein family. Mr. Klein was also a master craftsman.
Yew Dell Gardens Stone Castle
There happened to be a "Holly club" tour going on and we were fortunate enough to be invited to follow the group. A wealth of information was provided and questions from the group were encouraged.

A panoramic view of the Serpentine Garden/Conifer Collection which is just one part of the thirty-plus acres.
Yew Dell panoramic view
For more information, including a history of the home, nursery, and arboretum, as well as visiting, tours, weddings, and more please visit Yew Dell's main website: Yew Dell Gardens
The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The next best time is now. ~Chinese Proverb
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The Historical Tree Project: A Living Legacy by Ken Lemaster is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.