As summer comes to a close, I thought I’d share with you the last gardening tidbits from my summer in New York. They might seem a little random, but they’re interesting nonetheless!
1. Guy Wolff Pottery
I’ve long been a collector of Guy Wolff Pottery, but when Smith & Hawken closed their doors (moment of silence, please) it became much harder for me to find the pots. So while visiting my friend in Connecticut, she insisted we stop by his studio. It’s darling and everything I had imagined it would be: an old, cozy cabin converted into a studio, filled to the brim with his collections of 17th and 18th-century inspired pottery. I especially liked the clay-covered telephone on the cabin’s hand-hewn beam.Here’s the treasures I was able to take home with me and add to my own small collection:
2. The Merchant House
During the month of June, we lived in the East Village where I met a kind and humble man named John Rommel. After he realized I was someone who loved gardens as much as he did he promptly invited me to see the garden he created at the Merchant’s House Museum. Of course I jumped at the chance! This is a most impressive historic home (a national historic landmark, no less) but, of course, what I loved most was the garden. Using donated materials and plants, John turned a neglected patch of old and overgrown hostas into this beautiful retreat. I was so impressed with what John created (hey – any man who wears a kilt has got to be creative, right?) His skillful combination of foliage shapes and sizes were breathtaking, as was the ‘skirt’ of Painted Japanese Fern peeking out from under the boxwood. Oh, and I was so excited to see my first Jack-in-the-Pulpit flower!
3. Home Sweet Home garden
Oh. My. Heavens. We were fortunate enough to sneak away one weekend to visit The Hamptons, and let me tell you – it’s even more amazing than you’d imagine. This is truly a magical place and I loved every minute of my time there. Besides the jaw-dropping estates and pristine white beaches, the historical side of this slice of heaven is what really interested me. One of my favorite discoveries was the Home Sweet Home museum – a 17th century home and museum dedicated to John Howard Payne who, among other things, wrote the poem ‘Home Sweet Home’. Remember when Dorothy uttered her famous lines ‘There’s no place like home‘? Yep – they were taken from his famous poem. Also in the garden stands one of three historic windmills in East Hampton – the Pantigo Mill, adding to the picture-perfect charm of this very special place. Adjacent to this home is a vegetable garden that would be common to see in the 18th century. It’s somewhat formal in design, divided into four quadrants with bean trellises made from branches, bee skeps and herbs typically grown during this time. And because gardeners usually like anything related to gardening, I thought I’d show you my favorite part of the inside of the home. It’s a tiny little pincushion from the 1700’s called a ‘hemmingbird‘ – isn’t it the cutest thing? Made to clip onto a table to make mending easier. I love it!