United States of America, Connecticut, Fairfield County, Greenwich
Apple Acres (Greenwich, Connecticut)
Although the history of this property can be traced back to the 18th century, it was not until the 1930s that significant development of the gardens occurred, with each subsequent owner making a contribution. From the 1940s to the 1980s the landscaping was formalized, a pool added, and a small apple orchard planted. Perhaps the most outstanding feature of the property is the "courtyarded" effect and the attempt to respond to the historical significance of the house. The primary garden is bordered against an old whitewashed brick wall and the rest of the landscaping is outlined by the barn, the carriage house, the bathhouse, and the covered porches of the Georgian main house, framing the sides of the stone terrace. The entire two-acre site is enclosed by a stone wall topped by a white wooden spindle fence. A major renovation in 2000 simplified and softened the landscaping. Old box bushes (believed to have come from the garden of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, the grandfather of one of the former owners), mature rhododendron, evergreens, dogwoods, and lilacs were revived, and over 5,000 grape hyacinth bulbs were planted along the front façade. A perennial bed was enhanced with box and lavender, while peonies were accented and roses rejuvenated along the brick wall. A millstone was imbedded into the terrace, centered with thyme and other low herbal plantings. Softening the back of the home are yellow jasmine, clematis, and climbing hydrangea, all of which creep up the columns of the covered porches along the terrace and over the back entrance. There is also a mass of climbing roses over one of the major rock outcroppings.
Persons and firms associated with the garden include: the Siwanoy Indians (former owners, until 1754); Joshua Knapp and descendants (former owners, 1754-1845); Abram T. Mills (former owner, 1845-1868); Colonel Thomas A. Haight (former owner, 1868-1918); William Strain (former owner, 1918-1923); Mr. and Mrs. Calvert Smith (former owners, 1923-1942); Elizabeth Love Appleget (former owner, 1942-1989); Benjamin Cherner (architect, 2000); Timothy Paterson (landscape architect, 2000); Evans, Moore & Woodbridge (architects, 1930); and Highland Design (landscape architects, 2000).
The folder includes a worksheet, abbreviated site plans, a typescript narrative history of the house, a photocopy of an article about the house, and photocopies of photographs of the property taken in the 1920s.
Garden has been featured in Architectural Forum, April 1933