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Our Garden

Storrowton Herb Garden (1935)

Storrowton's Herb Garden was originally planned, planted and given to Storrowton Village in 1935 by the New England Girl Scouts. It was a gift of appreciation and affection for "Aunt" Helen, who was one of the organization’s most ardent and generous supporters.

The planting plan was drawn by Grace "Sunny" Hight Kirkwood (1906-1996), an internationally recognized landscape architect, teacher and former Girl Scout from Winchester, Massachusetts. Her other projects included gardens at Radcliffe College, Mount Vernon and Harvard Business School. She was assisted by botanist Helen Maria Fordham Noyes Webster (1875-1949), president of the Herb Society of America and the author of Herbs, How to Grow Them and How to Use Them (1933).

Our garden is filled with plants grown for their usefulness by the early New England settlers. It contains herbs brought over by the Pilgrims, as well as those indigenous to North America. Our garden has evolved into an educational garden, with sections designated for medicinal, culinary, household and textile purposes in the 1800s. Our gardeners have been hard at work to bring our garden back to its original roots and below is their wish list:

Coriander/Cilantro (Coriandrum Sativum) • Fennel (Foeniculum Vulgare) • Skirret (Sium Sisarum) • Goldenseal (Hydrastis Canadensis) • Pimpernel, Scarlet (Anagallis Arvensis) • Sage, Meadow (Salvia Pratensis) • Verbena (Verbena Officinalis) • Costmary (Tanacetum Balsamita) • Hens & Chicks (Sempervivum Tectorum) • Hyssop (Hyssopus Officinalis) • Jewelweed/Touch-Me-Not (Impatiens Capensis) • Meadowsweet (Filipendula Ulmaria) • Sweet Maudlin (Achillea Ageratum) • Alkanet (Anchusa Officinalis) • Chicory (Cichorium Intybus) • Cosmos, Sulphur (Cosmos Sulphureus) • Dyer's Broom (Genista Tinctoria) • Dyer's Saw-wort (Serratula Tinctoria) • Dyer's Weld (Reseda Iuteola) • Golden Marguerite or Dyer's Chamomile (Cota Tinctoria; a.k.a. Anthemis Tinctoria) • Flax, Perennial (Linum Perenne) • Indigo, True (Indigofera Tinctoria) • Pot Marigold (Calendula Officinalis not Calendula Tagetes) • Purple Pincushion Flower (Scabiosa Atropurpurea) • Safflower (Carthamus Tinctorius) • Saffron (Crocus Sativus) • Woad (Isatis Tinctoria)

While we do use a few modern varieties that mimic the appearance of heirloom plants or that are close descendants of hard-to-find older varieties, we’re seeking varieties that were in use before 1900. We prefer open-pollinated, non-hybridized, heirloom, or “species” varieties of plants. Many growers now helpfully label seeds and plants as “heirloom” or “heritage” varieties, and some even specialize in heirloom varieties.
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