United States of America, Connecticut, Fairfield, Ridgefield
Merrick Garden (Ridgefield, Connecticut)
Mr. Albert Wiggins owned the 14-acre estate on Peaceable Street in the early 1900s. In the mid-1930s, the property was subdivided roughly in half - the southern half was addressed as 19 Peaceable Street. Mr. and Mrs. Harold and Helene Merrick purchased the 7-acre wooded country estate at 19 Peaceable Street in 1949 and lived in the South Cottage for over 40 years. In addition to the South Cottage, the property included a carriage house with apartments, a stable/barn which functioned primarily during these 40 years as a 9-stall garage, a north cottage, a chicken coup and pig pen, and a greenhouse and shed. The Merricks purchased an additional .9-acre parcel of the property from a neighboring property owner during this time. The Merrick property was re-addressed over the years as 21 Peaceable Street and 65 Peaceable Street. It was put up for sale in the early 1990s as Peaceable Meadows. Eventually, it was further subdivided during this same time. All buildings on what was once the 21 and 65 Peaceable Merrick property have been torn down, including the greenhouse and shed shown in CT129001.
CT129001 captures only part of the perennial garden Mrs. Merrick maintained across the driveway from the front of the cottage. The perennial garden was divided from the driveway by a 3-foot high traditional Connecticut stonewall. Several stone steps in the middle of the wall led to the perennial garden. The CT129001 photograph was taken north of the wall's steps, looking to the northeast, across part of the gardens and to the greenhouse used to overwinter plants, and to the shed used for potting and storage. The garden varied from year to year but nearly always included tuberous begonias, astilbe, and paeonia (peony), all shown in CT129001. Mrs. Merrick's home was always filled with bouquets of flowers cut from the garden. Tall picea (pines) bordered the perennial garden on two sides.
Persons associated with the garden include Mr. Albert Wiggins (former owner, early 1900s); Mr. Clearand (former owner, 1947-1949); Mr. and Mrs. Harold and Helene Merrick (1949-2009).
The folder includes worksheets, photocopies of articles, and other information.