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Saturday, April 4, 2009

TAKE A TRIP: Connecticut Ideas

Spring is in full bloom in Connecticut. State-wide, Connecticut offers seasonal festivals and events sure to lure you out of winter hibernation. Whom You Know just loves Connecticut!

The Bellamy-Ferriday House & Garden in Bethlehem, a Connecticut landmark, is noted for the c. 1915 parterre garden and woody plant collection. Learn the social and horticultural history of this four-acre landscape with an extensive plant collection and fragrant apple orchard. Tours held on the hour. (203) 266-7596;

Promisek/Beatrix Farrand Garden at Three Rivers Farm in Bridgewater is a stone walled garden designed in 1921. The 300-acre property is situated at the confluence of the Shepaug and Housatonic Rivers. Having been lost to years of overgrowth, the garden was rediscovered in 1992 and restored using the original plan found in the University of California Berkeley archives. (860) 354-1788;

Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum in Wethersfield is a 1921 Colonial Revival Garden. The herb garden near the kitchen door of the 1788 Isaac Stevens House is a recreation of a colonial period garden featuring plants for healing and eating—such as mint, chamomile, lavender, sage, mallow, and thyme. (860) 529-0612;

The Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme, a Connecticut landmark, houses impressive local art work inspired by the beautiful on-site garden. Florence Griswold coupled both her passions - art and gardening - to leave behind this idyllic property. (860) 434-5542;

The Gertrude Jekyll Garden in Litchfield Hills is the birthplace of the Episcopal Church in the New World and the garden is the only extant American garden designed by Gertrude Jekyll, arguably the greatest gardener of the 20th Century. The garden includes 600 feet of classic foundation plantings, a planted stone terrace and an intimate rose alee. (203) 263-2855;

In April, view Japanese andromeda, forsythia, crocuses, snowdrops, witch-hazel and scilla in full bloom at the Kellogg Estate Gardens in Derby. Dating to the early 1900s, the property comprises a rose garden with over 120 species, a rock garden and butterfly garden.

Harriet Beecher Stowe, writer of Uncle Tom’s Cabin, leaves behind more than just a great American novel, but beautiful property in her honor. The Victorian Gardens & Grounds at the Stowe Center is a testament of her love for horticulture. The overflowing, intimate cottage also claims to be the home of Connecticut's largest magnolia tree and a pink dogwood thought to be over 100 years old. (860) 522-9258;

The beautiful landscaped gardens of the Hill-Stead Museum are reminiscent of the 1700s, which is deceiving since the property was founded in 1898 by Theodate Pope Riddle. A reflection of the refined taste and well-traveled family, the gardens is set in a picturesque backdrop of rolling hills, Colonial-style stone walls and thirty-foot elm trees. (860) 677-4787;

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