Friday, May 29, 2009

A Man Named Pearl...Pearl Fryar's Topiary Garden

In the small town of Bishopville SC you will find one of the most elegant kind and fascinating gentlemen you will ever meet. This incredible artist has created a fantasy land of plants and flowers right in his yard. If you visit you will be happily greeted as you enter a new world where plants have become abstract objects of art, manipulated by the hands of a man named Pearl Fryar.

Pearl loves visitors and he loves children. He spends virtually all day in his garden where he single handily created the art of topiary when he did not know such an art existed. For years his garden has been transformed one plant at a time. Many of the plants were picked up on the side of the road, dug up and thrown away. Others were given to him by the local nursery because they were too bad to sell. Pearl brought them back to life and changed them into objects of beauty like you have never seen before.

A square tree with a ball on top, maintained by Pearl from ladders precariously perched on top. Ziggurat hedges, arches, globes, towers and all shapes imaginable from simple plants you probably have in your yard. The place is a wonderland.

Pearl Fryar is a generous man. Children are welcome as visitors and helpers and he takes time with all visitors to explain and inspire. He invites all children back to learn more, and he meets them in schools, at the SC State Museum and anywhere to spread his vision of beauty and hard work.

You can see Pearl Fryar's work all over South Carolina, at his home, on Main Street in Bishopville, and at the State Museum in Columbia. Near his home you can even see his mastery at the local Waffle House. One day a manager there told Pearl that his work was beautiful, the next day he was installing a piece in the restaurants parking lot. Free meals for Pearl every day for the rest of his life at the Waffle House, and he deserves it ! Ask for the Pearl Special.

If you are driving past Bishopville SC on I-20 stop in to see this wonderful man. His home is literally blocks from the interstate intersection with US 15, turn left at Broad Acres Road. This is a stop and a wonderful gentle man you will remember for the rest of your life.

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