Lakewold Gardens

The spring of 1998 marked the dedication of the third domestic Gardens for Peace at Lakewold Gardens in Tacoma, Washington. With supporters and City dignitaries on hand, the bronze garden marker was unveiled at a site nestled near the Overlook Patio. This particular site overlooks other gardens on the estate and is one of the most peaceful areas on the grounds. The gardens at Lakewold include 500 varieties of evergreens, 250 species of rhododendrons and over 30 Japanese maple trees.

Lakewold, considered one of America’s great estate gardens, stands on the site of a 1908 summer cabin built by Emma Alexander. Her son extended the property and had the home and gardens designed to capture the view of Gravelly Lake and Mt. Ranier. The house was sold in 1925 to the Griggs family, who named it Lakewold, which means lake woods.

In 1940, the estate was sold to Corydon and Eulalie Wagner, and for the next 50 years, Mrs. Wagner transformed Lakewold to its present design.

Today, the garden reflects several significant refinements made by landscape architect Thomas Church, whom Mrs. Wagner hired as a consultant in 1958. Corydon Wagner died in 1978, and in 1987, Mrs. Wagner donated the estate to the Friends of Lakewold. The grounds were opened to the public in 1989 and Mrs. Wagner continued to live in the house until her death in 1991.

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