A Visit to Flower Hill Farm
Many of us enjoy our virtual visits to Flower Hill Farm via Carol’s blog and the wonderful photography featured there. Recently, I was lucky enough to visit Flower Hill Farm in person, along with Liisa, the Green Mountain Gardener. The gardens Carol has created at Flower Hill Farm are even more beautiful in person than in her photos. It is a magical place.
The gardens are mostly located behind the federal-period farm house, where the ground slopes downward away from the house and provides breathtaking views of the hills beyond. Carol has landscaped the property into a series of meadow-like terraces, defined by plantings of trees and shrubs and connected by grassy paths.
|Immediately behind the house, a cottage garden provides a lovely spot for a meal or afternoon tea.|
|It also provides a view of this meadow of beautiful flowers.|
Grassy paths beckon you to descend from one level to the next.
Carol not only treated Liisa and me to the hospitality of Flower Hill Farm; she also took us on a tour of gardens and nurseries in the Pioneer Valley of Massachusetts.
|At Smith College, we visited the Botanic Garden, with its beautiful plantings|
|… and wonderful trees like this Cornus kousa.|
|We also visited the Lyman Conservatory at Smith, where the delights included a collection of orchids,|
|… and the Capen Garden, where Carol considered how to adapt the inspiration of this rustic pergola with its climbing roses to Flower Hill Farm.|
In nearby Amherst, we visited Emily Dickinson’s garden, where an excellent audio tour linked the gardens to landscape history, to the history of the Dickinson family, and to Emily Dickinson’s poetry. After the inspiration of these wonderful gardens, none of us could resist buying some new plants for our own gardens. My favorites among the nurseries we visited were Nasami Farm, a native plant nursery run by the New England Wildflower Society, and Bay State Perennial Farm, which had an impressive collection of plants for sale.
I came home from my two day visit to Flower Hill Farm feeling as though I had experienced a week’s vacation. Thank you, Carol!