Norristown Garden Club Decks the Halls of 1890s Victorian Stone Mansion in Ambler

two people in a room by the Norristown Garden Club
Image via Jose F. Moreno at The Philadelphia Inquirer.
The music room at an Ambler Victorian decorated for the holidays by the Norristown Garden Club.

Members of the Norristown Garden Club brought the natural colors of the holiday season to its decoration of an 1890s Victorian mansion in Ambler. The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Sally A. Downey covered the beautification project and its stunning result.

The Ambler home — now owned by Joseph and Basha Gardner — was built by a period industrial baron who constructed it for his son.

The Gardners admired it greatly as a “dream house” and managed to purchase it in 2002.

It’s a seven-bedroom home with a widow’s cap turret and a wraparound porch.

The Norristown Garden Club members, outfitting the mansion for 2022 holiday tours, started with the street view. They placed tall urns filled with greens aside the front door, and the yard displays a whimsical locomotive with greenery-filled baskets and red lanterns.

Inside white roses, evergreens, pinecones, and floral arrangements grace the hallways and rooms.

The game room fittingly has a draped stack of board-game boxes, tied with red ribbon. And its chessboard royalty has been replaced with red-and-green pinecones and acorns.

More on the Ambler work of the Norristown Garden Club is at The Philadelphia Inquirer.


The Ambler home decorated by the Norristown Garden Club is one of just many seasonal projects the group undertakes each Dec., preparing its tours. This video features a property that benefited from its 2020 creative eye: The Highlands Mansion and Gardens.

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