There are a multitude of places where growing things reach up to kiss the sun, and most of us will never see them. Why? Because these places exist as people’s private home gardens, and unless you receive an invitation, you’ll never know what beauties live there. Thanks to the Garden Conservancy’s Open Garden Days, however, we can finally explore these tucked-away oases and take in their gorgeousness with our very own eyes.
This year, four counties in the Hudson Valley are participating in the first round of Garden Days: Columbia, Dutchess, Putnam, and Westchester Counties, starting with Putnam and Westchester on Sunday, April 27th. There’s only one garden on the Putnam and Westchester lists, so if you play your cards right, you could visit Stonecrop Gardens in Cold Spring (admission price $5) early in the day, then scoot down to Westchester County to see the White Garden in Lewisboro (admission $7). Takes about an hour to get from Cold Spring to Lewisboro, FYI.
Up north, the Dutchess County Open Day is on Sunday, May 4th and includes 3 private gardens: The garden of Ann Spiegel in Wappingers Falls, Cedar Heights Orchard in Rhinebeck, and the Chocolate Factory in Red Hook. Admission for each is $5. Columbia’s Garden Day is on Saturday, May 10th. Visitors can stroll around Kevin Lee Jacobs’ garden in Valatie, the Hudson Bush Farm in Greenport, and the garden of Margaret Roach in Copake Falls, which will also include a plant sale. Author Lee Reich will be giving a lecture on “Weed-Less Gardening” at the Church of St. John in the Wilderness, Copake Falls. The whole event runs from 10am-4pm, and it costs $5 admission per garden. As spring gets into full swing, these open garden days sound like just the thing to shake off the too-long winter.
Open garden days continue throughout the spring and feature different gardens. Find the full schedule here.
More information on all things gardening, including other open days around the country, at the Garden Conservancy website.