Wisteria and art blossom at 24th and McBryde

Wisteria and art blossom at 24th and McBryde
All photos by Kathy Chouteau.

By Kathy Chouteau

A flowering wisteria vine resplendent in fragrant, violet blossoms is greeting springtime in all its glory at the eastern corner of 24th Street and McBryde Avenue in Richmond.

Christina Barrett started propagating the wisteria vine along her property’s fence nearly two decades ago, and today, people stop by to take pictures by it and occasionally ask to take a sampling of blossoms.

“The wisteria were 3 foot tall twigs when I moved in 19 years ago—and this was all flat lawn,” she said, revealing her equally extraordinary home garden behind the fence.

Over the years, Barrett trained the wisteria to grow along her fence, which includes a wire for the vine to wind around. The flowers are just starting to bloom and are easily enjoyed from a street side view. The blooms typically last a couple of months, said the homeowner and gardener, taking turns to unfold and making the vine quite an eye-popping early spring showpiece in the neighborhood.

Wisteria and art blossom at 24th and McBryde

Aside from being a jedi-level wisteria grower, Barrett also has cultivated a beautiful home garden dotted with ceramics and mosaics she creates. Made in her ceramics studio in her backyard, Barrett’s ceramic creations are interwoven among numerous succulents, a palm-like Monstera Delisiosa plant, lemon, tangerine and orange trees and other plants that combine to make incredible backyard surrounds.

If she breaks a ceramics work, she pays it no mind, and just incorporates the colorful pieces into her mosaics or garden pathways. It’s an artist’s garden in every sense of the imagination.

The multitalented Barrett said she likes to keep busy and—aside from putting her green thumb to good use—participates in art sales and teaches ceramics classes that people can take. She can be reached at [email protected] to learn more.  

Have you visited Barrett’s wisteria at 24th St. & Mc Bryde Ave. in Richmond? If so, tell us about it in the comments.