Saturday, June 6, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. – Garden Conservancy Open Day in Worcester County

Glenluce Garden 18 Marlboro Road,Stow, Massachusetts

Glenluce Garden is a small, personal, and romantic garden. Entering by the western gate, you will find yourself on a mound with green paths beckoning in seven directions. Explore these paths to discover a grove of paperbark maples, an island of tree peonies, or a border of fragrant native azaleas. A pergola covered by climbing roses leads to a frog pond shaded by heptacodium and a courtyard with raised vegetable beds. Glenluce Garden is the home of at least twenty-two magnolias, eighty-eight rhododendrons, about 100 peonies, and more than 150 old-fashioned roses.

Rock Bottom Garden, Stow, Massachusetts

This one-acre garden has been shaped by sixteen years of collaboration between a woody plant zealot and a perennial gardener. From the 1840s house situated on a dry knoll, one can enjoy sweeping vistas of the gardens below—these include mixed borders, a woodland garden, an herb garden, a bog garden, two rock gardens, and a sizable propagation area. The gardens feature numerous unusual woody plants including many rare magnolias. With any luck, the bigleaf magnolias will be in bloom. Their dinner plate-sized flowers are a striking garden feature in early June.

Maple Grove, 16 School Street, Boylston, Massachusetts

Designed around a late-eighteenth-century Cape Cod-style house, Maple Grove is framed by mature sugar maples. Located within the historic district of Boylston, the garden is adjacent to an eighteenth-century cemetery, giving it charming borrowed scenery. A true collector’s garden, Maple Grove has a wide assortment of choice woody and herbaceous plants in a connected series of borders, beds, and islands, with sculpture and water features.

The Garden of John D. Mapel and Stephen J. Libuda, 95 Brigham Hill Road, Grafton, Massachusetts

After two decades of gardening at this location, original plantings have begun to mature. Visit Brigham Hill Farm’s horticulturist’s garden whose philosophy is to gently guide nature to take its own course. Perennial borders have given way to lower maintenance shrub borders and container plantings that keep in tune with the naturalistic surroundings. A water garden, meadow, terraced spaces, and walking paths encompass the two-acre property. A passion for plants has developed into a retail nursery and greenhouse space with a unique selection of annuals, perennials, herbs, and vegetables. There is something for everyone at this one-of-a-kind plant collector’s garden.

Brigham Hill Farm, 128 Brigham Hill Road, North Grafton, Massachusetts

This 200-year-old colonial house and barn were purchased in 1975 by the present owners. The first thirteen years were spent in dealing with the ailments of an old house and in the rebuilding of old stone walls on the property. After all this work was finished, the gardens were planned and planted one by one. The herb garden was planted in 1996 off the south side of the kitchen wing. In 1997 a woodland water garden was started on the hillside to the west of the barn…this has become an ongoing project! In the fall of 1998 the perennial bed by the swimming pool was redesigned using most of the original granite and perennials. In 2007 and 2008 off the north side of the house, a large bluestone terrace was installed for entertaining with many large container pots for plantings. Down the broad steps from this area is a high-walled vegetable garden with a rill and granite-raised beds. Warren Leach of Massachusetts designed and planted all the above gardens. There is another large vegetable bed to the north of the barn which holds raspberries, strawberries, asparagus, cutting gardens, and various slow growing annual vegetables. Eight chickens occupy a hen house there with a roof planted with “hens and chicks”. Allow forty-five minutes to one hour for your visit.

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