Historical Preservation, Inc.

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Tour Spotlight: The Renaissance of Mrs. Mills' Garden

September 26, 2017

This Heritage Hills residence at 911 NW 15th was built in 1928 by Henry Schafer who was a native of Germany and made the land run of 1889 to El Reno were he established his business. His city home was a combination of English Regency and Georgian styes. In 1951, the home was sold to Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence Mills. Mrs. Mills built the walled garden. Mrs. Mills entertained generously at this home and was well known in the community. Many long time residences of Oklahoma City still refer to this home as Mrs. Mills' house.


The backyard had several additions since the 1950's and current owners felt that the space needed an update; therefore, an 18 month project began in 2014. The owners goals were to honor the beautiful architecture of the home; establish a seamless integration between old and new; and install a classic swimming pool for their family to enjoy. 


Mature, existing plantings of magnolia and holly provided a verdant, evergreen backdrop that, with the addition of more magnolia and holly along with live oak and yew, create a soothing privacy merely blocks from downtown Oklahoma City.


Evergreen boxwood and groundcover soften the geometry inspired by the formality of the architectural lines. Elegant limestone bowls of seasonal color along with white-flowering crape myrtles and hydrangeas add sculptural and seasonal interest.This garden exists on its own as a beautiful, logical extension of the architecture of the house, but it easily transforms into a warm backdrop for good times celebrated with family and friends.

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