From the Garden
We have good news to report from the garden. In January, the plan for our demonstration garden beds was completed by Sally Harman, Conservation and Preservation Chair of the Rappahannock Valley Garden Club. Using the now empty beds that surround the Four Seasons statues in the area near the summer house, our objective is to create a space evocative of Ellen Biddle Shipman’s design intent using plant materials that were included in her original Chatham designs or were staples in her designs for other gardens. The plan was submitted to NPS, made its way through the rigorous compliance process mandated for actions on historic properties, and has been approved. We will turn next to working with NPS on the implementation process. This will be a very exciting undertaking. Our hope is that the demonstration beds will add to the beauty of the garden and provide visitors an opportunity to explore another part of the history of Chatham’s landscape.
The other good news in the garden is provided by Mother Nature (although she seems to be in no hurry) as Spring is arriving. Daffodils are filling the beds with their cheerful yellow shades and tulips are up and ready to open as the weather warms. And, yes, we did have a better survival rate on the tulips this year thanks to gardener Scott Blake’s techniques to deter the squirrels and rabbits. The volunteers returned to the garden at the beginning of March, working through two very chilly Wednesdays and missing a week due to a snow cancellation. That all seems to be in the past and we enter April with hopes for sunshine and warmer weather. We are always looking for additional volunteers on Wednesday mornings. If you are interested in helping out, contact volunteer coordinator Carol Hyland at firstname.lastname@example.org.