The Jill Griesse Historic Garden at the Robbins Hunter Museum/Avery-Downer House creates an educational, all-season landscape in the heart of the Village of Granville. Celebrating the life of Jill Griesse, the garden and daffodils are a “collection of a lifetime.”
The garden honors the late Jill Griesse and her passion for daffodils, gardening and the Robbins Hunter Museum. The Griesse family graciously donated a selection of Jill’s priceless daffodil collection which began the inspiration for this special garden. Working with well-known landscape architect and horticulturist, Laura Burchfield, a design was developed to include elements required for a sanctioned American Daffodil Society (ADS) display garden. One of only 25 such gardens in the country, this designation calls attention to this important collection of bulbs and, in other seasons, the historic and modern cultivars that are planted.
The historic garden is designed with three gardens representing three periods of significance to the Avery-Downer House and to include historic design, ornamentation, and plants from each era. The garden is used to educate visitors and the community, both children and adults, about how landscape design has changed over time and facilitate new programming on historic gardens and gardening in general, such as exhibitions, classes for adults and children and the annual Granville Garden Tour.
A new Greek Revival Folly, designed by classical architect William Heyer, stands prominently at the south end of the garden. It provides an intimate gathering place and allows for small public and private events including private parties and weddings, lectures, musical performances and theatrical performances, partnering at times with Denison University, Newark-Granville Symphony, and Central Ohio entities.
Started in 2015, the garden and its plantings are lovingly tended by a corps of dedicated volunteers.
Your support enables us to maintain and improve the plantings and hardscapes as well as to provide educational and entertaining programs related to gardening.
About Jill Griesse
Philanthropist, political activist, community leader, competitive swim coach, business partner with her husband and mother of three: Jill Griesse did it all and did it well. In her last year, while fighting the most challenging battle of her life, pancreatic cancer, she chaired the 2012 National American Daffodil Convention in Columbus, Ohio, ending with a candlelight dinner under a tent at her home, Pau Hana. There she had over the past three decades planted thousands upon thousands of daffodils consisting of more than 700 varieties.
Two nights later, she once again shared Pau Hana and the daffodils for the benefit of the Robbins Hunter Museum. Director, Ann Lowder said, “When we were fortunate enough to have Jill accept our invitation to serve on the Board of Trustees, she really put herself into it. She rolled up her sleeves and went to work, attracting strong community leaders and embarking on five years of a fundraising event at Pau Hana during daffodil season. She has an enormous strength of purpose.” Her efforts on behalf of the museum enabled the completion of many projects and put the museum in the position of being Granville’s premier tourist attraction.
To honor the memory of Jill, the Robbins Hunter Museum began in 2014 to create an historic garden landscape interpreting three historic periods. Using the architectural plans of Laura Burchfield, MLA, beds will incorporate thousands of daffodil bulbs representing every cultivar. Partners will include the American Daffodil Society and the Granville Garden Club, both of which Jill was a proud member.
Thank you to for supporting the Jill Griesse Historical Garden through the 2019 Granville Daffodil Stroll!
Spencer and Beth Barker
Alan and Jeanne Bolton
Ben and Lisa Englefield
Graydon and Barbari Griesse
Paul and Linda Griesse
John and Mary Hinderer
The Hirsh family
Kevin Kerr and Michael Kennedy
Patricia R. and Herbert J. Murphy Foundation
Thomas Wortham and John Kauffman
The Jill Griesse Historic Garden is a gathering place where everyone can play, learn and grow. Help us build and endow the garden so it can be a treasured space in Granville for years to come. Select the Donate Now button to make a secure donation.
Ordering Bulbs for your Garden?
Brent and Becky's Bulbs is sure to have what you are looking for! Click on the link below and you will be taken to Brent and Becky's online store. Choose Robbins Hunter Museum from the pull down menu, start shopping, and a percentage of every dollar you spend will support our organization. It's really that simple!
Learn more about how you can help us to maintain and add to this amazing public space for the Village of Granville that Jill loved. Please fill out the form below.