Wellesley Gardeners’ Guild visits The Gardens at Elm Bank

The Wellesley Gardeners’ Guild (WGG) kicked off its civic year by touring The Gardens at Elm Bank at the Massachusetts Horticultural Society’s Wellesley headquarters. Tour highlights included a turn around Mass Hort’s Trial Garden; the Goddesses Garden; the kid-friendly Weezie’s Garden; the Italianate Garden; and the Bressingham Garden, created by British design powerhouse Adrian Bloom in 2007.

Here are some pics:

Wellesley Gardeners' Guild
Wellesley Gardeners’ Guild members, masked up and ready for their tour. Photo credit: Beth Shedd Photography

Elm Bank Reservation, Wellesley
WGG started off the tour at the Trial Gardens, a cooperative effort between Mass Hort, the Massachusetts Flower Growers’ Association, and the University of Massachusetts. In this space, a wide variety of annuals, perennials, and vegetables are grown as a trial to see how they will do in the New England climate. New, unreleased, and old standard types of each variety are grown side-by-side and judged on how they perform. Results can be found at All-American Selections.

Elm Bank Reservation, Wellesley
Mass Hort’s Hartley Botanic Victorian Lodge has been a centerpiece of the Trial Gardens since 2017. The 19′ x 11′ handmade aluminum structure was made possible in part by a generous donation from Mass Hort Trustee Scott Bierney’s (Bierney lives in Needham now, but called Wellesley home for many years).  Bierney wanted Mass Hort to have a place where for visitors where flowers would brighten gloomy days in winter and give hope that spring was on its way.

Elm Bank Reservation, Wellesley

Elm Bank Reservation, Wellesley
Weezies Garden, installed in 2004. The active garden space designed for outdoor place-based youth education includes  an Enchanted Woodland, a Tea Party Garden, a Pollinators Garden, Sandbox Archaeology area, green arbors and plant tunnels, water features, and more. Kids of all ages love this area, which was extensively renovated in 2015.

 

Elm Bank Reservation, Wellesley
The Elm Bank manor house, viewed from Bressingham Garden. The garden was installed in 2007 and installed over two very hot summer days by over 200 volunteers. Designed by plantsman Adrian Bloom of Bressingham, England, it is a four-season garden that uses mass planting techniques to create visual impact.

Elm Bank Reservation, Wellesley
Bressingham Garden

Elm Bank Reservation, Wellesley
The Italianate Garden’s Copper Beech hedge provides the “walls” of the garden.

Elm Bank Reservation, Wellesley
The New England Unit of the Herb Society of America maintains this teaching garden.

Elm Bank Reservation, Wellesley
Autumn interest in the herb garden.

Elm Bank Reservation, Wellesley
Ceres and Pomona, two of the three Roman goddess statues that stand guard at Mass Hort.

Elm Bank can always use volunteers looking for a meaningful and rewarding experience. They need help with everything from weeding and mulching to helping out in the library and the office. You don’t need a green thumb — the staff trains and guides volunteers.