Chase Garden, located near Graham, Washington, one hour south of Seattle on the way to Mount Rainier, sits on a bluff overlooking the Puyallup River valley and features spectacular views of the mountain. It is one of sixteen Garden Conservancy preservation projects across the country and is noted for its exceptional beauty and originality.
The garden was the lifework of Emmott and Ione Chase, who devoted more than forty years to building and refining the landscape to create one of the finest examples of mid-twentieth century Pacific Northwest design. They created Japanese-inspired ponds and bridges surrounding the house and a colorful meadow filled with drifts of rock garden plants inspired by wildflower fields on Mount Rainier. They planted native shrubs and carpets of trillium, fawnlily, and vanilla leaf in naturalistic woodlands of second-growth Douglas fir trees. Their artful, modernist landscape truly captures the unique spirit of the place and has been called one of the ten most beautiful gardens in America.
The garden, four-and-a-half acres in size, features expanses of groundcovers and perennials accented by Japanese maples, colorful rhododendrons, and conifers and transversed by meandering pea gravel pathways along a gentle slope between the house and garden. A grand vista overlooks the river valley, forested foothills, and an unforgettable view of Mount Rainier.
The Story of the Chases
Below is a two minute interview with Ione and Emmott Chase with renowned horticulturist Marco Polo Stufano as part of the Garden Conservancy’s video “Preserve an American Legacy” by Russell Connor Productions.
Marco is the one who called Chase “one of the ten most beautiful gardens.”