The landscape of Plimoth Patuxet Museums provides material to write a thousand novels or period pieces portraying the way of life and culture in America from pre-history to present. From Wampanoag storytelling and their encounters with Europeans to the arrival of the Pilgrims in the early 17th century, dramatic events and groundbreaking activities left an … More Mary P. Cunningham: a pioneering woman in landscape architecture.
I’ve spent most of my career stewarding and preserving cultural institutions in some way or another. Lately its been historic properties. These are some of the most challenging typologies to work with due to their shear limitations. Historic districts, National Historic Landmarks, cultural landscape reports, wills, and other local/state/national regulations for properties designated as historic. … More Increasing Biodiversity in Historic Gardens
In managing a historic property, there’s always about 100 projects going on of varying scales and importance. At the big scale and important end of the spectrum would be the successful management of a half-million dollar storm water management project. The middle road might be a roof replacement project for an aging building, and the … More Rose Propagation & The “Low Risk, High Reward” Mentality
For this post I’d like to share the process and rationale of upgrading one of our garden beds at Tudor Place. Our East Lawn bed is a large planting border situated along the eastern edge of the East Lawn garden. This area, along with several other spaces and garden rooms, comprises of the formal North … More Lessons Learned: Display Bed Troubleshooting
It was the summer of bats here at Tudor Place! We just completed three successful public programs dedicated to bat-friendly landscapes and advocating for their habitats here in the District. The story begins last fall when I began my role here in the gardens. 2018 saw an excess of two things: rain (it was one … More Bat Friendly Gardens & Public Programming
**This post has been updated 9/21/19** What’s been on my mind lately is prepping for the spring plant sale. While this is successful as a community event alone, we also aim to celebrate the heritage plants grown on the property. Additionally, we use this opportunity to generate revenue through the sale of plants. Materials that … More Partnerships through Figs
**The following is a mini story about pivoting boxwood blight: collaborative problem-solving, creating a positive mindset, and finding opportunities in less than ideal situations.** It was my second week on the job as director of buildings, gardens, and grounds at a historic 5.5 acre urban public garden and museum in the mid-atlantic. Upon arrival I … More Pivoting Boxwood Blight, Part I
As Director of Gardens and Grounds at Tudor Place, one of my tasks is to manage the garden volunteer program. I was blessed to inherit a wonderful group of loyal volunteers who have been working in the garden for several years. Its a very symbiotic relationship between organization and volunteer. Good relationships bring numerous rewards … More Getting Creative in Volunteer Management
When I first arrived at Tudor Place, my biggest fears were dealing with the massive boxwood collection as well as caring for the rose garden. Both are usually fairly low maintenance when following a best practices protocol, but things can go wrong very quickly. However, another responsibility is caring for the historic Sago Palms. According … More Fun with Sago Palms!