United States of America, Connecticut, Litchfield, Salisbury
Twin Maples (Litchfield, Connecticut)
When the current owners purchased Twin Maples in 1996 the nearly 325 acre property had belonged previously to only two other families and had never been developed. A Georgian-style house was built with two formal gardens, formal terrace, greenhouse, indoor swimming pool, guest house and caretaker's cottage. However restoring and preserving the habitat was just as important to the owners, and they installed the stand-out feature at Twin Maples: forty acres devoted to native grasses and wildflowers that can be seen from the house. Woodlands and shrub lands were cleared of non-native invasive species and supplemented with large scale planting of regionally appropriate trees, shrubs and understory. A rocky outcrop seen from the driveway supports native mosses, ferns and low bush blueberries. There is a substantial pergola in the woodlands walk garden and a labyrinth installed in a field. Following the initial renovation the landscape was designed to be self-sustaining with native species supported to the extent that invasive species cannot return and maintenance can be reduced. For instance, the meadow areas are mowed only once a year in the fall so nesting birds are not disturbed yet woody species do not get established. Despite the size of the property less than one acre is maintained as lawn.
The property was a land grant to the Selleck family from the English King George II in 1740. There were two maple trees marking the spot of a long-gone residence, and Twin Maples is the name associated with that history.
Persons associated with the garden include Selleck family (former owners, early 1700s-1953); Lansing family (former owners, 1953-1996); David Easton (architect, 1996); Deborah Munson (landscape designer and horticulturist, 2000-present); Rodney Robinson (landscape architect, late 1990s- ); Larry Weaner (landscape designer of meadow, 1997- ); Thomas Wirth (landscape architect, 1990s)
The folder includes worksheets, photocopies of articles and a personal account by the current owner.
Garden featured in "Twin Maples, Litchfield County, Connecticut" by Paula Deitz published in "Sitelines" by the Foundation for Landscape Studies, Spring 2011
Garden featured in "In the Meadow" by Nan Booth Simpson published in " Wildflower" by the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, Fall 2009