Artist Garden Cottage History
The grounds surrounding the Artist Garden Cottage were part of the property on which a school house was built in the late 1700's. The school house and approximately one half acre were separated from the property in the early 1900's. A hunting cabin was built on the remaining 8.8 acres of wooded land and the school house was converted to a single family residence. The family that built the hunting cabin later turned the cabin into a summer home. Eventually, that same family turned their summer home into their permanent private residence.
In 1987, after the last of the family was gone, Trish (the Cottage Keeper) purchased the property from the estate. Trish was led to this outstanding property by her Dad, Charlie, who wanted to make it his home for the rest of his years. He did this, completing his stay here in November of 2004, at the age of 90. His attraction to the property was the out-buildings. Charlie wanted a place to put his wood-shop. The wood-shop became a great resource for Charlie's family's gift ideas. A few of the pieces Charlie made are in the cottage.
During his time here, Charlie uncovered a large piece of slate on the edge of the driveway. He had heard that there had been a formal garden on the property years ago. Charlie decided to plant a rose bush at the end of the slate slab and in doing so he uncovered more flat stones. He got the rose bush planted and it still remains in the same spot today.
Trish was excited about the prospect of there being a hidden garden. She would come to visit Charlie and they would head out to the rose bush to look around. With pitchfork in hand, Trish poked the ground listening for the sound of what might be more slate or flat stone. It took 4 years to uncover the stone walks, clean out the brush and cut down unwelcome trees.
When Trish got to the last section of the garden, she discovered a buried pond. With her grandson, Thomas's help she cleaned out the pond, finding lumber, bricks, broken tools,etc. Thomas found a frog and when the pond was totally clean and refilled with water, he put the frog back. There have been frogs in the pond ever since.
There wasn't much in the garden as far as flowers were concerned. Trish brought plantings, from other parts of the property, into the garden and added others. The stone walks are still very uneven due to the tree roots that lifted them through the years. So, the project continues.
The garden shed, with the moon on the door , was created and built by Trish and her older grandson, Kenny. They used scrap wood that Charlie gave them from his wood-shop.
Charlie would come out to the garden to keep Trish company while she worked. He sat on the green iron bench under the trees and enjoyed the beauty of the flowers, butterflies and birds. His boots now sit beside the bench and are planted with hens and chickens.
This wonderful garden has brought great joy to many people and it has even spawned some great ideas. When a local artist visited the garden and worked his magic with watercolors, he suggested to Trish that the house and the garden would make a wonderful artist’s retreat. He thought it would be great to give watercolor lessons in this lovely setting. So, that was the beginning of the Artist Garden Cottage.
Trish, with the help of her son-in-law, brother, daughter and husband completely refurbished the cottage. It took a year. The Cottage had its first full year as a Bed and Breakfast in 2008. In 2013, after 5 years, the Breakfast Service was discontinued.
The garden is an on-going project.