Santa Paula Times

Orr/Parker: Artist’s studio, garden of wonder on Hospice Home & Garden Tour

April 06, 2005
Santa Paula News

Shaded by towering oaks, you’ll see flowering trees gently shaped in appealing designs, enjoy pond turtles shyly peeking at visitors, and tour the studio of a noted professor and artist during the May 1st Santa Clara Valley Hospice Homes & Gardens of Santa Paula/Art Walk in The Oaks.

Shaded by towering oaks, you’ll see flowering trees gently shaped in appealing designs, enjoy pond turtles shyly peeking at visitors, and tour the studio of a noted professor and artist during the May 1st Santa Clara Valley Hospice Homes & Gardens of Santa Paula/Art Walk in The Oaks. The 2005 Santa Clara Hospice/Home Support Group May 1st tour will feature architecturally unique homes, local history, wonderful verdant gardens, works of art, silent auction, plant sale, musical entertainment and ice cream sundaes from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.Dorothy Orr and her husband Harold Parker live in the glass home designed and occupied by the late Savage Klein on Fern Oaks Drive in The Oaks. Although the home is not open for the May 1st tour, visitors will still be able to observe the interior seamlessly from the garden areas that feature a variety of plantings that reflect the love of flowers and trees shared by the past and present owners.Orr and Parker share a love of aviation, evident throughout the generous property with many whimsical airplanes, from mailbox to wind chimes. An arbor of roses, all different but all David Austin’s, thrive under the magnificent oaks that dot the property, over the decades adjusting to the shade.The home was built in 1951, and Orr said that the remodeling was done to emulate the original Savage’s intent including his love of breezes. Orr said she and Parker purchased the “home of my dreams” in 1987, two years after she joined Ventura Community College as an art professor.The property holds about 80 rose bushes and 60 fruit trees – including Asian plums, Fuji apples and persimmons – and Japanese maples in the shade garden are accessible by brick paths.Orr is a devotee of espalier, gently training various flowering trees into designs. “Espalier means living fence…it’s something very pretty,” she notes.It is no wonder that this garden of the unexpected is populated by Araucana chickens – each named for a friend of Orr’s - that lay eggs in a variety of pastel colors, from seafoam green to pale blue. “Each chicken has her own color,” Orr noted.Camellias bursting with flowers planted long ago by Peg Klein continue to flourish under Orr’s care. Climbing roses have been strategically planted to encircle the second story addition that, to Orr, will “feel like I’m living in the tree house” overlooking two turtle ponds with water-loving plants and exploring domestic cats.When it comes to where Orr creates art, “I about live in my studio; even when I come home from the college and am very tired I can go into the studio and be revitalized.” Orr, who creates magnificent wood pieces and natural rock sculptures along with the acclaimed paintings that will exhibited during the May 1st tour, is also a master gardener and an environmentally conscious one.The original Japanese maple has a family of little ones, there is a vegetable garden as well as an area for rose startings; all clippings, except for those containing thorns, are recycled – Orr has her own shredder! – creating a soft carpet that nurtures the soil.
Also featured in the tour is the unique California ranch (with a touch of the Orient) Say Road residence in The Oaks of late architect and artist John Stroh, now home to Linda and Mark Bacin.The Spanish Mediterranean home of Karin and Duane Lyders offers a view of the mountains to the east of The Oaks and many sun-setting golden moments. The Lyders’ home will also host the special Plant Sale offering magnificent roses from Otto’s Nursery and must-have flowers from DoRight’s Plant Grower.Marlene and Robert Crozier’s contemporary California craftsman built on a 150-plus year old family farm on West Telegraph Road offers a look at country living amid acres of lemons and avocados.The tour will include a stroll on Holly Road, where paintings by Santa Paula Society of the Arts and other Santa Clara River Valley artists will be displayed in a rural setting for enjoyment as well as purchase. The lovely front garden and wide patio outside the Holly Road home of chef Lucinda Anderson and her character actor husband Dion Anderson will offer a place for rest, relaxation to live music, and refreshments (including coffee, brownies and cookies) after viewing the art. Baskin Robbins ice cream sundaes (sundae service will start at noon), a silent auction and an opportunity to freshen up will also be available on Holly Road.Comfortable shoes are recommended for the tour.Pre-event tickets at $18 each went on sale April 1; on tour day tickets will be $20 at each stop on the tour.Pre-event tickets for $18 each will be available in Santa Paula: Chamber of Commerce, 200 N. 10th St.; Santa Paula Times, 944 E. Main St.; Pamela’s, 861 E. Main St.; The Whistle Stop Café & Emporium, 989 E. Main St.; and John Nichols Gallery, 916 E. Main St. In Fillmore: Mirage, 508 Santa Clara St.; and Fillmore Flowers, 354 Central Ave. In Ventura: Adventures for Kids, 3457 Telegraph Road and Jan’s Hallmark & Mailing Center in the Telephone Road Mervyns Shopping Center. In Ojai: Tottenham Court 242 E. Ojai Road.Tickets by mail at $18 each are available by making a check payable to Santa Clara Valley Hospice/Home Support Group, P.O. Box 365, Santa Paula, CA 93061 (please enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope!).Call Hospice Board President Cathy Barringer, 525-7985 for more information.