A family reunion of Van Vlecks means the gates to the Garden will be closed this Saturday. Here’s the announcement:
Van Vleck Gardens are usually open to the public 365 days a year. For 2013, however, that number will drop to 364. On Saturday, June 29, members of the Van Vleck family will convene at Van Vleck House for a family reunion, and the grounds will be closed to the public for that day.
Members of the Van Vleck family lived in various residences on the Van Vleck property between 1872 and 1993, when Howard Van Vleck’s heirs donated the 5.7 acres now known as Van Vleck House & Gardens to The Montclair Foundation. The limestone villa currently located at 21 Van Vleck Street was constructed between 1914 and 1916. Howard Van Vleck and his family moved into it in 1939. Much of the landscaping and planting that delights visitors to the grounds was done by Mr. Van Vleck, an enthusiastic gardener and horticulturist who hybridized hardy varieties of yellow rhododendron that are unique to the property. Three of these hybrids have been registered and named for Van Vleck family members.