an august open garden day, and a lecture

margaret on porch
YES, THERE ARE HOLES FROM HAIL STORMS in the largest foliage here, and a voracious woodchuck early on left his mark, too, followed by a recent rabbit invasion, countless downpours and lots of wild wind. But what the heck? You’re all gardeners; you know how it goes. To support my town’s annual “day,” I’m opening the garden August 20th from 10 to 4, preceded by a gardening lecture at 8:30 AM at a historic local church (details on lecture preregistration is on the jump page). Come visit—and wander this dirt road and beyond for milking demonstrations at the nearest dairy, and lots more.

The fourth annual Copake Falls Day—a hamlet in Columbia County, New York, that includes a substantial tract of Taconic State Park land, part of the New York State park system—includes a lineup of events from antique tractors and cars to an art show tours of the former Iron Works (this was an iron-ore mining town back in the day). Other local gardens will also be open for visiting. My contributions to the goings-on:

Garden Lecture

To register for my 8:30 AM slide lecture at Church of St. John in the Wilderness, follow this link. The topic: “Nonstop Plants: The 365-Day Garden,” on my four-season philosophy, favorite plants, and a history of the garden here. The $20 donation includes a $5 coupon redeemable toward a signed copy of my recent book, “And I Shall Have Some Peace There,” for those interested. Proceeds from tickets and book sales will benefit Friends of Taconic State Park, an important charitable group within my community and one close to my heart, since my garden is surrounded by parkland on three sides.

Open Garden Day

The garden will be open from 10 AM to 4 PM. Admission is free. Those attending the 8:30 lecture will have to choose a visiting time (either 10, 11 or noon), to smooth traffic flow at the garden. After all, Jack the Demon Cat can only greet so many people at once. Those not attending the lecture first can just show up. Again, August is not peak garden-visiting time, but I’ll be here to answer questions, and we always manage to have fun (and frogs).

Waterfall, Trails and Other Attractions

  1. Sherry Rea says:

    Oh would love to come to your garden tour. I live in Ohio. Where would be a great place to stay and fly into?

    1. Margaret says:

      Hi, Sherry. I am in Columbia County, NY, adjacent to Berkshire County, MA. If you want to plan a trip to this area from farther away, I’d suggest a spring garden open day — I typically do them in May and/or June. Very colorful then. Meantime, if you want to look into visitor info for those counties it will give you an idea. No airport nearby — Hartford (CT) and Albany (NY) are both more than an hour away, but “nearest”.

  2. dana goedewaagen says:

    I live in Southern Berkshire Cty. and I’ll be there. I come from a family of gardeners, my Mom’s is gorgeous and my sister is a professional landscaper, and I’m starting to feel embarrassed about my sad yard and no gardens. I’ll be looking for inspiration as a beginner. The budget is tight, so I’m just looking to start to learn and hope to start doing a little more with my property.

  3. Doris Matthews says:

    I would love to visit your garden-I live in Central Mass so it won’t be far-ROAD TRIP!!!! See you on the 20th

  4. Lisa says:

    Would love to come visit your garden, and the other local gardens. Where can I find the listings and addresses?


    Dear Margaret,
    I’m too far away to attend physically but shall be there in spirit. You are such a help as I tend these hot southern gardens of mine. I would love to win your canning book just for some new inspiration for I’ve been canning and jamming away til I am wishing for cold weather. I hope you have lots of attendees and a lovely garden tour day. May God bless you in all you do. You are a garden princess to us all.

  6. Dear Margaret:

    I adore your book and website and wonderful email blasts that know just what is befuddling me at just the right moment. I confess to having been called a luddite a time or two so not being able to find directions to your very generous garden tour doesn’t really come as a total surprise to me — even after going over your website again and again. I live in a funky (woo woo) restored barn in Housatonic, MA (southern Berkshires) and would love to come over. Can you steer me in the right direction?

    With thanks!


  7. Karen Leslie says:

    dear Margaret, What a delight, I shall be attending and hope to bring a friend who has a lovely garden of her own in Kingston. Can’t wait to stroll through your ‘heaven on earth’ bit of shangri-la, I feel as if I just found the ‘golden ticket’, and love to learn from someone with such a stunning passion for the earth, and a true and tender feeling for ‘words’…With every good wish to your ‘sparkly’ person….Karen Leslie

  8. Daisy Marshall says:

    I will dream of being there. Who knows, I may remember when i wake up! So good to be able to keep up with your good works. All the best, Daisy Marshall.

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