Purchase clears way for Bishop’s Close Garden to reopen

Bishop’s Close Garden at Elk Rock in Portland will eventually reopen to the public, after it was purchased by descendants of founder Peter Kerr, the Oregonian/Oregonlive (Portland, Oregon) reported.

The Kerr family originally donated the property at 11800 S. Military Lane to the Episcopal Diocese of Oregon six decades ago. The diocese then kept the picturesque, English-style garden open to the public all this time. Last year, however, the diocese put it up for sale and closed it to public visitation. That raised the possibility that it would stay closed to the public, depending on the eventual purchaser. The Kerr family ended up exercising its right of first refusal to buy it for a $4.5 million asking price, with the deal closing July 28.

Kerr descendants Nancy Truszkowski and Peter Platt told the newspaper they will keep the garden open to the public and were pleased to save it from future development.
“We are working out the details of its preservation and we will make a formal announcement when plans fall into place,” Truszkowski stated. “Through the Friends of Elk Rock Foundation, we will be launching a fundraising campaign to support the garden’s upkeep.”

More information will be posted at elkrockgarden.org.

The garden is one of numerous public gardens across the state listed on the OAN’s Retail Nurseries and Garden Centers Road Map, which you can request for free, as well as the online version of the map on PlantSomethingOregon.com.

“We include the public gardens on our map so that gardeners can find inspiration,” said Curt Kipp, OAN spokesman. “It’s everywhere — all over the state.”

Scroll to top