A Visit to The Garden In the woods

A visit to the Garden in the Woods - trillium and dicentra

Dear Friends,

Would you like to take a tour of the New England Wild Flower Society’s Garden In The Woods with me?

I visited last week when the trilliums and other spring blooming plants were approaching their peak.  As I arrived I was trying to remember the last time I has been and realized that I my memory of the place was distinctly tied to being pregnant with my son.  So I could easy place my last visit to 12 years ago.

A visit to the Garden in the Woods

As with any garden, things evolve change significantly in 12 years.  Mostly I think I noticed how it has all come together a bit more. It is a wonderful place to gather plant inspiration for a woodland style garden or a garden that features New England native plants.

A visit to the Garden in the Woods - bog garden

If you have a shady garden or one that is needs to be woodsy it can be hard to find inspiration for design that highlights these existing characteristics of your land.

This garden was created on the site of an old quarry and highlights glacier carved ridges, steep hillsides, valleys filled with bogs and meandering streams and native and naturalistic woodland planting throughout.
A visit to the Garden in the Woods - columbine

If you go now, you can probably still catch the trilliums (the collection is huge!). As well as redbud trees, woodland poppies, and bluebells.  They will soon give way to columbine and early summer plants.

A visit to the Garden in the Woods -

A visit to the Garden in the Woods - trillium

A visit to the Garden in the Woods - dogwood

A visit to the Garden in the Woods - trillium

A visit to the Garden in the Woods - bluebells

A visit to the Garden in the Woods - bluebells

I have to admit that even though I enjoyed everything that was in bloom, my favorite part of the garden is the “Hidden Valley”.  What a lovely way to keep fallen trees onsite but weave them into something so visually appealing.

A visit to the Garden in the Woods - dogwoodA visit to the Garden in the Woods - land art

The installation was created in 2007 by landscape architect W. Gary Smith as part of an exhibit call Art Goes Wild.  As came upon it, I had a bit of a de ja vu moment –  had I seen it before?  I think perhaps I saw it under construction?  Or maybe pregnancy brain led me to forget about it completely.  Whatever, It is a piece of land art that I found so inspiring and lovely.

How to Visit:

Garden in the Woods is in Framingham, MA and can be visited daily.  There is also an onsite shop that sells many of the native woodland plants that are featured in the gardens (including a huge variety of Trillium).


images by Rochelle Greayer


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About Rochelle Greayer

Hi, I'm Rochelle and for 18 years I have worked as a landscape designer, author/writer, and design teacher. I've designed residential and hospitality (for hotels, restaurants, and spas) gardens across the USA and in the UK, Europe and the Middle East. After many years of teaching garden design topics in person, I launched the PITH + VIGOR Boot Camp series in early 2018. Through my blog, social media, and online courses (Garden Design Bootcamp and Planting Design Boot Camp) I aim to help homeowners learn how to confidently design and create home gardens that reflect their own personal and unique style.


  1. Linda on May 19, 2018 at 7:35 pm

    I so enjoy your blog! The last photo of the installation reminds me of Andy Goldsworthy’s work, could it be that is why it seems familiar?

    • About Rochelle Greayer on May 21, 2018 at 6:53 am

      Hi – It certainly does have andy goldsworthy-like qualities – but it isn’t done by him. It is by W. Gary Smith.

  2. Anne on May 25, 2018 at 7:44 am

    Rochelle, even though I have been gardening for 20 years, your photos still inspire me. I shows your photos to customers of our seed shop. Everyone is delighted. Your blog is great. Regards. Anne

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