17th Annual Hidden Gardens Events 2021

Self-Guided Garden Tour

Saturday August 28, 10:00am- 4:00pm
Advance Sale Tickets: $35

The 16th Annual Hidden Gardens Tour and Garden Market on the Green had to be canceled for 2020 because of the pandemic. Not knowing exactly how opening up the county would evolve, we passed up the month of June this year and opted to schedule our event for later in the summer, on Saturday, August 28.

Making this choice gives all of us garden voyeurs a rare opportunity to view these beautiful private landscapes in the waning days of summer, rather than the burgeoning time of late spring. Several of the gardens have been on the tour before, but not for many years and never before offered for late season viewing. They have evolved and matured, the light is different, the color palette is bolder and richer and it’s a chance to see how these avid gardeners keep their landscapes interesting and fresh in the dog days of August.

The Hidden Gardens Tour showcases five private gardens in Austerlitz, Chatham, Ghent, and Spencertown. From a ca. 1790’s Federal-style home nestled in a bucolic country landscape to a contemporary Asian-inspired abode featuring massive native plantings, there will be a broad spectrum of garden designs to inspire visitors. Most of the sites this year also feature vegetable gardens that will be abundant with produce in August. All of the gardens boast one or more water features: farm ponds, koi ponds, waterfalls, and fountains. For those curious about what can grow in shade, woodland gardens abound. It will be peak time for dahlias, coneflowers, black-eyed Susans, and many other flowering plants that make the late summer garden an explosion of color and form. One location is a sculpture garden with installations of the work of the artist who lives there and some of his colleagues. In another, formal elements of garden design are juxtaposed with natural features of the landscape and combined brilliantly to great effect. Outdoor gathering options became very important in 2020, due to the pandemic, and all of these properties offer many great ideas for “outdoor rooms”: fire pits, dining spaces, and conversation areas. 

The Gardens will be open, rain or shine from 10am to 4pm. Advance tickets are $35 and day-of tickets are $40. Day-of tickets will be sold at the Academy and at the Market on the Green from 9:00am – 2:30pm. Tickets and the program guide, with maps and descriptions, will be available to be picked up on the morning of the tour at the Academy or the Market starting at 9:00am.

Garden Market on the Green

Saturday August 28, 9:00am-2:30pm

The market will take place, as always, on the Green in the center of Spencertown. It will showcase vendors offering plants, home and garden furnishings, birdhouses, antiques, garden books, and expert garden advice, plus shoppers will find bargains on choice garden items and accessories at the Academy’s White Elephant Booth. A percentage of all sales benefit the Academy.

Putting Your Garden to Bed

A live presentation with Donna Peterson
Sunday, September 12, 11:00am

Spencertown Park Pavilion
Registration required. Tickets $10.

Donna Peterson, a Horticulture Educator and Certified Master Gardener with Cornell Cooperative Extension since 1994, tells us how to get a jump on next year’s garden by putting this year’s flower and vegetable garden to bed the right way! Learn what to cut back (and when) and what to leave up (and why). Get the scoop on when to put down compost and mulch (and on what). Find out the best time to divide perennials and what to plant in the fall. Donna covers all the bases.

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