tour poster

Voyeurs and connoisseurs alike will be happy to know that this year’s annual Maryland Home and Garden Pilgrimage will feature some of Guilford’s most important homes and buildings. 2013 is the centennial year of the Guilford community, and many of its beautiful and fascinating homes will be open in honor of the anniversary. Among them, the home of Ogden Nash, Baltimore’s celebrated poet lyricist (1902-1971), and noted artist Grace Hill Turnbull (1880-1976).

The tour will take place rain or shine on April 28, from 10a.m. till 5p.m., and will begin at house number one, 3701 St. Paul Street. Buy tickets online (they are going fast)  at , or send a check — $30 per person and $15 for the (optional) box lunch– made payable to Maryland House and Garden Pilgrimage. Checks should be sent to The Guilford Association, 4200 St. Paul Street, Suite 100, Baltimore, MD. 21218. On the day of the tour, tickets will be $35 each.  Proceeds for the event will benefit Historic Sherwood Gardens, where the tulips will be in full bloom (God willing) on April 28.

There are several notable houses this year. The cottage of Dr. Anne Barone, whose garden won first prize in the 2012 Baltimore Sun garden contest, takes charming exception to the idea that Guilford houses are all grand mansions. Ogden Nash (“Isabel met an enormous bear, Isabel, Isabel didn’t care…” ) lived for many years in a Tudor Revival on Rugby Road which is also on the tour. And house number one, the home of Mr. and Mrs. Judson Flanagan, is a Palmer-Lamdin designed house, one of two matched “Gateway to Guilford” houses built in the 1930s with beautiful rose gardens and many unique architectural features.  (Its match, 3700 Greenway, is not on the tour, but it was for sale last month and was featured in the Baltimore Fishbowl. It sold in three days.)

One of the twin “Gateway to Guilford” houses.

Particularly interesting is the Spanish Colonial style house of artist Grace Turnbull, empty for 30 years and now in the process of being restored by a young family. Grace Turnbull’s work is in the collection of the BMA and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, but she is little known outside (or even inside) the Baltimore Beltway. Private, devoutly religious and a little mysterious, she modeled her house on Chancery Road, after the Cervantes Inn in Toledo, Spain. It has a separate studio space with bell tower and Turnbull’s hand carved messages in the beams. Arts and Crafts elements combine with the Spanish mission style to create a Maryland Home and Garden “must see.”

This year, as part of the Centennial Celebration, the first 700 attendees will receive a free poster designed by artist Tom Chalkley, with another 300 signed posters available for $30. Posters will be distributed at the Second Presbyterian Church, where lunch will also be available from noon until 2p.m.

Tips For Pilgrims

“Pre-sales have been extraordinary this year,” says Ann Giroux, Chairman of the Guilford Home and Garden Tour, who strongly suggests that with two weeks to go, people book online rather than risk having their tickets arrive late. She also offers a few tips for making the most of the day:

  1. Don’t all show up first at House Number One. Check the tour map on the website, and avoid the crush by visiting the last houses first.
  2. Carpool. It’s more fun and creates fewer parking problems.
  3. Wear comfortable shoes – it’s a garden pilgrimage, not a garden party!
tour sherwood