The Garden Conservancy’s Open Days Program continues on Thursday, June 20 in Nantucket. They are proud to partner with Sustainable Nantucket to present this Open Day featuring six beautiful gardens between 10 – 4. Begin at East Brick Garden at 93 Main Street, in town. This garden is an explosion of playful color year round, featuring massive displays including hollyhocks, Casablanca lilies, and all sorts of annuals overflowing from every bed. Lindsay Mohr is the garden designer, and she installs spectacular displays of perennials, annuals, and bulbs that delight the senses. Stay on Main Street and visit the garden of Meredith Marshall, 141 Main Street. Enjoy the simple elegance of an historical town garden with climbing roses, picket fences, and beautiful open spaces. Tucked away behind the historical George C. Gardner house on upper Main, you will find a beautiful herbaceous border with informal boxwood groupings accompanied by summer flowering perennials and bulbs. The garden is a pleasure to view as you meander on the grass path that guides you around the back of the garden. The private pool garden is protected by a wisteria covered pergola and flowering vines galore. Here you can also enjoy collections of potted plants.
The White Garden, 12 Coffin Street, is the former Quaker Meeting House, moved sometime after the turn of the century from the Sherburne area to its present location by Elmer Greene, a famous American portrait painter, whose passion was gardening. In 1967 the property was purchased by David Halberstam, the Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and bestselling author. David and his wife Jean made many notable additions to the garden over the years, including a koi pond and the sublime raised perennial garden. The raised white garden is a beautiful collection of white flowers and complimentary textures. The garden has just been renovated to increase sustainability and emphasize the garden ornaments collected by the owners.
The history of the plantings at the Sussek Garden, 85 Main Street, is unknown. What is known is that the first structure on the property, a workshop, was erected c. 1725. Eventually, a small house was built and, by 1795, was enlarged to the house it is today. Thus it seems appropriate for the garden design to be of the ‘cottage style.’ By definition, a cottage garden is a place for the cultivation of flowers, vegetables, and small plants in the limited space provided by a small cottage. In the heart of the historic district, this garden exhibits a profusion of plantings that typify that genre. The plantings are not pretentious, but rather collections of beloved plants grown for their beauty and practical uses. You will see heirloom white foxgloves grown from seeds from Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, peonies, roses and herbs, all in a palate associated with historic New England cottage gardens. On the opposite side of the garage there is a small garden with a brick path leading to a garden bench. These plantings are more suitable for shade, with hosta and astilbe, all executed by garden designer Kristina Wixted.
The final two gardens are Hillary Hedges Rayport’s Garden at 89 Main Street, featuring an informal parterre planted in quadrants with assorted heather, and a rose-covered garden house with views of the garden from the rear of the yard, and the Maclean Garden at 2 Spring Street, uniquely situated at the edge of the historic district and Consue Springs. For maps and complete parking details, visit http://www.gardenconservancy.org/opendays/open-days-schedule/openday/725-nantucket-open-day. $5 per garden, children under 12 free.