Connecticut gardeners and garden enthusiasts have a convenient resource to help them find all things gardening in Connecticut, the Connecticut Garden and Landscape Trail. According to its website, the Trail is “a joint project of the Connecticut Nursery & Landscape Association and the Connecticut Greenhouse Growers Association”.
The goal of the Connecticut Garden and Landscape Trail is to expose both residents and tourists alike to all aspects of Connecticut’s green industry, including some of its nurseries, garden centers, greenhouses and green professionals. Here in Connecticut, the green industry has sales of $1.1 billion with over 3,300 companies employing 48,000 workers. That means there are lots of green hotspots to show off.
The Connecticut Garden and Landscape Trail’s interactive website allows visitors to search for places to visit by location or by area of interest. For example, there are over 35 public gardens listed throughout the state, many with links right to the garden’s own website so finding directions, operating hours and special events is a snap. After a quick click on the Bartlett Arboretum’s link, I found out this is the perfect weekend to plan a visit since the Arboretum’s annual plant sale is taking place on Saturday, May 7. New this year, specialty herb baskets that make great Mother’s Day gifts.
If you’re interested in historic gardens, the Connecticut Garden and Landscape Trail is a one-stop resource for locating the wide array of offerings here in our state. You can find information on historic gardens like the sprawling country estate gardens of Hill-Stead in Farmington or the Gertrude Jekyll garden at Glebe House in Woodbury.
Did you know Glebe House garden includes 600 feet of classic English style mixed border and foundation plantings, a planted stone terrace and, not to mention, its famous rose allée? This garden offers Gertrude Jekyll fans the opportunity to see a garden she designed — and that was restored using her original plans — without jumping on a plane and flying to England. Jekyll, known for her masterful and artistically designed gardens, still inspires gardeners today.
If you need more inspiration, consider visiting one of the many independent garden centers on the Connecticut Garden and Landscape Trail. Here you can find the newest and hottest gardening trends and plants well-suited for Connecticut gardens. Many offer extensive show gardens that are ideal for discovering plants and unique plant combinations that are sure to thrive in our climate. If you’re a hosta fanatic, you must visit O’Brien Nurserymen in Granby. With over 1,600 varieties of hosta in the show garden, this hidden gem is definitely worth a special trip.
Remember the Connecticut Garden and Landscape Trail the next time you’re looking for something fun, educational and close by to do with the entire family. Bring your camera, a notepad, and of course, your wallet. Believe me, the green goodies will be hard to resist.