Dirt Gardeners Field Trip to Troll Knoll

Folsom Garden Club Visits Troll Knoll

John Morris greeted the club members to his garden dressed as a troll, which included a top hat and a walking stick. He told how he and his wife Ann bought the 20 acre property 22 years ago after it had been burned in the 49’er fire. It was a blackened landscape with charred remains of burned trees. The hill-top property offered fantastic vistas from the Sierra Mountains, the Sutter Buttes, the coastal range, Lassen Peak, and the Tahoe Rim as well as the Feather, Yuba, and Sacramento Rivers.

There are multiple themed gardens that surround their home. They didn’t want a home with a garden; they wanted a home in their garden. John has an eclectic and creative imagination and his gardens reflect his fantasy.

Their beautiful home sits on top of the knoll and has a formal garden with an emerald green lawn, perfectly trimmed hedges, and an amazing variety of roses. As you leave the formal garden, you stroll down the meandering trail to unexpected surprises of the multiple themed gardens.

The first is a pond with water-lilies, a beautiful weeping willow and a floating boat. It’s as if you have stepped into a Monet painting. It’s so tranquil and peaceful. Continuing down the trail you come upon a vineyard, fruit orchard and raised vegetable beds. At the bottom of the hill another unexpected surprise, a life-size dinosaur family, and an ant-hill. The ants are about a foot long and were made from 2 stones and metal. There appears to be hundreds of them. Glad it’s just a fantasy!

Continuing back up the hill on the trail we come upon more surprises. You pass a swamp; then unexpectedly see a couple of dragons and then you wander into some Roman ruins with statues and colossal columns. Further along the trail, after passing hillside gardens, you enter Annsville, which is John’s version of a gold mining ghost town. It includes a temperance hall, saloon, a mine shaft and a merchant store. The store is actually their guest house. Leaving the ghost town, you come upon Pinky’s which includes 3 Airstream trailers with numerous pink flamingos. We end our tour on their patio overlooking their formal garden with magnificent vistas. John and Ann were so gracious; they invited us to have our lunch in their garden, which was a fantastic way to end a beautiful day and awesome tour.

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