Lots of folks visit Saint-Gaudens National Historical Park to see the impressive statues, gardens, and landscape. Most miss a gem that’s right down the road—The Song Garden Flower Farm. A few years ago, I learned about it from reading a friend’s Song Garden t-shirt. After some delightful visits, the pandemic arrived and like many wonderful places, the garden closed.
Here’s the good news--the garden is open and is an opportunity you don’t want to miss. Peggy Heath Ogilvy and Dan Hertzler are the owners and creative crew behind the gardens and grounds. In Peggy’s Tea House, you will find snacks, tea, and lemonade to purchase for a modest cost. They have placed chairs in strategic spots throughout their property that welcome guests to sit and enjoy the view, perhaps while sipping tea and munching cookies. Dan laid a white stone labyrinth in a peaceful clearing among the trees which visitors are welcome to walk.
Every time I’ve gone, Peggy has been there to say hello and chat. I always learn something new. This time I learned that when you pick hydrangeas (or lilacs), you should pound the end of the stems with a rock before putting them in a vase so they will absorb plenty of water and last longer. She even has the perfect sized rock for the job in her flower shed.
Here's the procedure for pick-your-own flowers:
- Head to the shed and grab a basket and some snippers
- Try to decide from among a zillion beauties which ones you want to pick
- Back at the shed, remove all leaves from your prizes—the better to squeeze in as many flowers as possible
- Take a mason jar, add water, arrange your flowers, drop $20 in the box
- Bring your bouquet home where it will brighten your home for a long time--these are very healthy flowers
The garden opens at 10 on Tuesdays through Saturdays (only until noon on Saturdays) and will be open through September. The Song Garden's name no doubt came from the fact that Peggy is a music teacher. She recently retired after 24 years teaching in Winchester, MA, and Woodstock, VT. Peggy and Dan are seriously considering closing the gardens to the public beginning next year so she and Dan can relax for a change. I recommend you take the opportunity to visit the Song Garden now before it’s too late.