The Gardens

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368 Taconic Road, Manchester

In the owner's words..."Twenty-one years ago Ruthie and I bought a lovely home in Manchester on a large very wooded lot. Ruthie loves gardens and I have always been a gardener as well as a dentist. Shortly after moving in, I started having the backyard cleared and turned into lawn. Landscaping was professionally done at the front of the house and then I started planting gardens front and rear of the house. There was never a plan. I dug two ponds with a shovel and lined them with rubber sheets and connected them with a stream with a pump in the lower pond to circulate the water after building a rock waterfall. I built a rock wall and constructed a patio in the back of the house. I put picnic tables and chairs at the top of the hill at the back of property in front of the house. It is a delightful place to have coffee in the morning or cocktails late afternoon."

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324 Prospect Street, Manchester

One member of the husband and wife team of this lovely series of gardens is known for her green thumb and creative floral arrangements. The other half helps with the heavy lifting and “supervised” weeding.  Together they have transformed the property surrounding their home over the years into garden spaces to delight the eye. The use of perennials, trees and shrubs is carefully managed with additions of annuals tucked in here and there. Along the side of the house is a hosta garden with multiple varieties in various shades of green. To the left of the house is a large space for their beloved peonies. Many perennials including lilies share the space adding color and interest all summer long. The view from the back of the house showcases a large perennial bed and an open field with an unobstructed view of the mountains. A stand of dogwood trees adds interest. Enjoy this peaceful setting.

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15 Hawk Ridge, Equinox on the Battenkill, Manchester

Created within the tight boundaries of the condominium association, the Picotte garden is an inspiration to those with limited space. Maggie began gardening on weekends 28 years ago, slowly transforming the developer’s landscape into a personal and creative garden. In recent years she has worked with some wonderful people to further refine and continue the gardens. Using a combination of structural boxwood and mixed perennials and annuals, the plantings are inviting, playful and full of color and texture from June until frost. Some of Maggie’s favorite plants are salvia uliginosa, thalictrum rochebruianum, and clematis ‘Betty Corning’, because of their delicate blossoms and airy habits. When combined with the bolder annuals and perennials the contrast of forms and colors brings a distinctive energy and liveliness to the gardens.

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MacLaurin Home

231 West Union Street, Manchester

 Back for an encore.  The MacLaurin gardens are a mixture of formal and informal plantings, specimen trees, conifers and shrubs.  Their house, Balquidder is named after the Scottish home village of the ancient MacLaurin Clan.  Delight in the views from the well placed sitting areas including “Anthony’s Folly”, a formal wall with a seat put in place to break up the garden and to create an interesting resting area.  Further down the stone wall is a curved split rail fence known in England as a “copse”, a small wooded area often seen in the fields of Scotland. The main herbaceous border is planted to show color from early spring to late fall

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139 Dorset West Road, Dorset

The current owners inherited their garden from Ellie Banks, a talented and passionate gardener who in the 1980’s began what has become a show stopper in what was a former gravel pit! The side beds have a colorful mix of cottage garden flowers. The show starts blooming in May with irises and poppies adding a punch of vibrant color to the newly emerging plantings. Delphiniums, hollyhocks, globe thistle, marguerite daisies, bee balm, astilbe and asters are examples of the wide assortment of flowers that bloom later in the season. Behind the house is a flower garden which runs above an old moss covered stone wall. Raised vegetable beds and blueberry bushes and early raspberry bushes add to the mix. Their goal is to have constant color and new blooms throughout the growing season.

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128 Eagle Ridge, Dorset

“From spring to fall our house is surrounded by magnificent perennials, annuals, herbs and vegetables. My favorite time is when the spring perennials begin to show and the glories of the gardens never cease to amaze me.” – Homeowner -

An English garden, framed by boxwood hedges is home to many native plants to Vermont. Flagstone walkways and cobblestone paths lead you to a series of gardens surrounding the house. A serpentine drywall graces the backyard and boxwood borders abound to define flowerbeds. A small rose garden is in memory of the owner’s husband. Birch trees dot the property and an enclosed series of raised beds for flowers, herbs and vegetables are other attractions at this lovely property.

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199 Mad Tom Road, East Dorset

199 Mad Tom Road is a historic property, built immediately after the Civil War, in the Italianate style. The house itself features a very lovely, traditional wrap-around Victorian style porch, which shows off hanging baskets from the arches between pillars. The wide lawn and gardens in the front are deeply shaded by old maple trees, and the formal shaded gardens in the back are outlined by mature boxwood shrubs. You will find a variety of perennials including hostas, daylilies and phlox. A separate kitchen used to be located in the backyard, the foundation’s remnants surviving today as a raised concrete patio.

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241 Mad Tom Road, East Dorset

These gardens provide flowers for Ikebana, vegetables for their table, fruit preserved in the larder, images to inspire work at the easel, and hours of great exercise and peaceful relaxation. Grapevines frame the view from the flagstone patio, lined with herbs and scented geraniums. Hostas, daylilies, phlox and roses sit beside petunias and zinnias. It’s a bright display of herbs and flowers in the front garden, and vegetables and flowers in the back, surrounded by a handcrafted birch fence.

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1050 Mad Tom Road, East Dorset

The current owner bought their 1826 farmstead in 2016. It is their goal to keep the landscape looking like an old farmstead. The three acres adjacent to the house are where they spent most of their efforts, with the two red barns being their favorite part of the landscape. They are trying to re-claim the meadow to the south of the house for wildflowers, planting more wildflower seeds each year. The flower beds are not perfectly trimmed, nor perfectly mulched nor weeded. That is not the vintage style they are working to preserve. The eight acres across the road, with the beaver pond in the foreground and Dorset Mountain in the background, is also available to garden tourers to visit. Don’t miss the line-up of antique grass mowers!