MG Projects 2011-New London

Traditional New England "colonial gardens" inspired MG Greg Farlow's (intern-NL) outreach project. His project was to create an accurate representation of a colonial "doorstep garden" similar to those prevalent in the 1700s and found in the historic homes of Ipswich,MA., Essex, MA., Sturbridge Village, Williamsburg, Va. and Strawberry Banke in Portsmouth, NH. His venue was the Leffingwell House Museum in Norwichtown, CT.

The Leffingwell House Museum was built in 1675, making it one of the oldest houses in CT. Common to the era, but not present on the house, were "doorstep gardens" containing herbs/spices and flowers native to the area. Plus, there were many plants brought from Europe and cultivated in the soils of "NEW-England". Greg researched plants native to the area in 1700 as well as those imported from Europe. The 720 foot dooryard garden contains 8 raised bed frames that will showcase the more common plants native to the area in the 1600 and 1700s, plus imports in keeping with the era of the Leffingwell House.

A work party including 20 Norwich Free Academy High School football players, 3 Master Gardeners, 1 intern and 20-15 local residents, prepped the land, laid stone dust, measured and cut lumber for raised bed frames and surrounded it with a picket fence exactly 4 feet high, in accordance with the local zoning ordinances in effect in 1701.

Several businesses, including Ace Home Center of Norwich, Adelman’s Sand & Stone of Fitchville, Agway, Lisbon Home Depot and Norwich Lumber donated materials. For more information or to find out how to volunteer, contact Greg at

Leffingwell House Museum Doorstep Gardens in Norwichtown