Fairview Resident Embraces Gardening, Traveling and Art
In 2007, John and Leslie Parker built their home in Fairview. They attended a landscape course at SMU and, as a class project, they designed a landscape plan for their house. They knew they wanted a western/southwestern themed yard and did extensive research to pick the right plants to create that feel. Over time, a wooded fern garden has developed in the backyard. They also planted a vegetable garden.
Japanese maples, Spanish daggers, red buds, live oaks, palm trees, yucca plants, salvia, lantana, hostas, leopard plants, begonias, petunias, and so much more follow the path around their house.
Leslie said the most impactful plant is the lantana, “It is the most dependable and it will bloom all summer.” She finds hostas to be the most difficult plant to grow in her garden because it is hard to find the right light, but she tries anyway. Her favorite part of gardening is researching and design.
Leslie’s garden will be one of the stops on the upcoming Heritage Ranch Garden Friends Garden Tour. She said she believes her home was chosen because, “My yard is not your cookie cutter yard for this neighborhood.” She explains what she enjoys about the annual garden tour, “I love to see the different kinds of flowers others have and see what I want to try to plant. I like to see their yard sculptures and other decorations.”
Other passions Leslie holds are traveling and collecting art. An upcoming photography safari trip to Africa will be her seventh trip to this continent. She will photograph the great migration of wildebeest, zebras and giraffes.
She spent last Christmas with family in Nepal. She said, “We wandered the streets of Kathmandu and saw structures built in the middle ages. It had a very cool Casablanca feel.” They also went to what she describes as “mystical” Bhutan which is located on the Himalayas’ eastern edge. They spent time in India where they saw extreme poverty. She witnessed sacred cremation fires burning on the banks of the Ganges River.
Her art collection includes items they have accrued during their travels. There are steins dating back to 1749, a Salvador Dali lithograph, Turkmenistan chieftain’s belt, miniature Turkish tapestry that is backlit to accentuate the intricacies of the knots, silk embroidery pieces from Vietnam and China, rugs from around the world and a colorful marble coffee table that was made by the family who crafted the marble inlay work at the Taj Mahal and much more. She also has on display arrowheads that she and her father collected.
A widely diverse collection of masterpieces are pleasingly displayed within and without the Parker home.