This is a fun stop during a day trip to Sudbury and Concord. It's a working mill, and although it's not so very old (re-built in 1929) it's just beautiful. There are some very pleasant walks behind the mill and on the way to the Mary-Martha Church and the Little Red School House.
Make sure to take the walk inside the forested area, don't walk on the road...no shoulder!
The name does NOT come from the sisters from the Bible...taken from the historical web site:
"The Martha Mary Chapel was built in 1940 under the direction of Henry Ford. One of six similar chapels that serve six different communities in three states, the chapel was built and dedicated by Mr. and Mrs. Ford as a tribute to their mothers, Martha Bryant and Mary Ford."
It's an adorable chapel, very New England...I've heard the waiting list to get married here is years long. Who knows. It's directly in between the Mill and the Inn, so enjoy the view!
Again, the Henry Ford family is responsible for this building's location. It's a very cool building, perhaps more interesting to me because I'm a teacher and a Laura Ingalls Wilder fan. (Okay, that makes no sense geographically, but I figure her classroom was probably about this size and shape.)
Anyway, it's cool. If you dare, walk the 100 yards or so to the outhouse and check it out. :)
You could wander around the exterior of the greenhouse to see the prep areas and nursery of plants which are outdoors in the summertime... probably getting ready to be wintered in the green house. Of course there are a series of windows which open to ventilate and maintain proper temperatures.
My husband keeps lobbying for a small greenhouse on our deck at the back of the house... hmmmm
The welcome center is where you buy your entrance tickets and any plant material you may wish to bring home. There is an assortment of related gift and practical items in a pleasant space which also includes light snacks and a comfortable couch. You will find clean rest rooms here as well.
There are regularly scheduled talks and tours and educational programs as well. Check the web site for further info.
Here we find designed settings using native plants and artful containers. Notice the "green roof".
"those species that were growing in North America prior to European settlement. They are well adapted to regional climate and topography...offering shelter and nourishment to insects, birds, and other native wildlife."
The staff who take care of the Garden in the Woods must be very devoted to their work, because there are so many special touches along the way which could only have been done with loving hands. My husband was particularly taken with the benches made from tree limbs. I liked the way they used branches as well as slices of logs to create bins for sorting things. There was an arbor which we would love to attempt... but first, I'd better finish what I've started. ... that's the problem with gardening.... there is always more.. and the redesigning/transplanting/creating... just continues forever. Guess you have to be a gardener to follow my thoughts here.
The Curtis Path from the Woodland Garden leads visitors to the sunny basin surrounding the Lily Pond Lush pndside plantings and floating gardens are home to frogs, turtles. and insects.
We were delighted with the little families of turtles reminding us of when our kids would try to keep them as pets... which of course never works out well. Off to the river with the critter. We have always had lots of wildlife in our village because of living at the confluence of the Pawtuxet River and Narragansett Bay... fresh water and salt. Brings quite an assortment of birds and creatures to us even tho we are only 5 miles from the City of Providence.
Plant labels help you to identify the various species and there are good ideas for combinging plants and using natural materials which you will discover along the trail.
We walked the Curtis Path which is approximately one mile long with Lily Pond, Idea Garden, Meadow, and the Invasive Plant Jail along the way.
We found many wonderful wild flowers which would be ideal for our property. I'm always looking for appropriate plants to match our historic home.
There are a few trail loops which branch off from the Curtis Path where you can discover Lady Slippers, brooks, the Lost Pond Trail and much more.
I took this photo through the dirty glass windows...hopefully it shows you a bit of the inside board. There are a couple of lessons written up there...enlarge the photo to check it out.
Just wanted to add one more item... a weeping cypress.
Quite a lovely specimen. Wonder where I could plant one in our yard?