Frank Cabot - A Tribute

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Balistrieri's picture
Title: Guest
Joined: 2009-11-04

I had the good fortune to meet Frank several years ago and hear him present in Manhattan. It remains to this day one of the best lectures with slides that I've ever seen. Not for content, but for style. He is on my mind when I present a lecture with pictures.

His other great acheivement, the gardens at his home, Les Quatre Vents, in Charlevoix County, Quebec, is memorialized in a book he wrote some years ago titled, "The Greater Perfection." In beautiful and detailed fashion he lays out the history of the construction of one of the continents great gardens.

He was a gardener's gardener, and did some incredible things. Thanks Frank.

Carlo A. Balistrieri
Flemington, NJ (smack dab between New York City and Philadelphia)
Zone 6

Title: Member
Joined: 2011-11-27

Visited Les 4 Winds Garden... a few times once with private tour by Frank....What stuck in my mind was that this garden must be hugely expensive but he recommended to us if we wanted to buy statues or ornaments that he looked around and found slightly damaged ones in good condition at a good discount.  There were alpines growing in the crevices of patio stones and real nice ones, also some huge troughs besides the house with collections.

after taking us around I noticed not far off he had a large vegetable garden.. it was claimed by someone that the local nursery main business was looking after his garden.

He offered to take us on a botanical tour of the local area and we followed him.

Frank got to the wooded area and decided that they way to go was through a forest thicket and he separated the brush with his arms and plunged into the thicket. We came to a ridge with a ground cover of kalmia and he grabbed onto one and tried to pull himself up and we ended up pushing him up there and then he pulled us up with his climbing pole.
he stopped to point out various plants and a amelanchier bartramiana which he said he identified as unique. We arrived at the peak and beside a rock he showed us a one foot tall non-native rhodo that he planted some 20  years earlier as an experiment although he knew it was not the thing one normally does. He talked to the locals in french and bought wine at the grocery store and had a ham sandwich for his picnic lunch.

Not far from his Japanese Pavilions he created a water supplemented area for his collection of primula which were his favorite and was said to represent about a quarter of known species.
He consulted with some of the best well know garden designers but ultimately he knew best how to build his gardens.


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