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Burrows House Garden

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A gas plant (Dictamnus fraxinella Purpureus ) flowers in the Burrows GardenThe Burrows family, who occupied the Burrows House during the 1860s and 1870s, was typical of working-class citizens living in a waterfront village. The Industrial Revolution brought about many changes that affected life in America, including gardening activities. The availability of manufactured garden equipment, exotic plant materials coming in from all over the world, and more leisure time all contributed to the shift in gardening practices.

New England gardens were no longer needed solely for utilitarian purposes. There was no longer a need for large fields of crops, such as corn. Large gardens packed with produce were replaced with smaller vegetable and flower gardens. Flower gardens were no longer just for the very wealthy people. The art of home flower gardening was born!

Let us go back to the Burrows family. Among the many financial difficulties and health woes that Mrs. Burrows is enduring she has to figure out how to use her new gardening tools.

Mrs. Burrows has a list of garden tasks: untangling her new hose, filling her bright colored pots with fuchsias, and let’s not talk about the mower. She also needs to read her new issues of The Horticulturalist and Hovey’s Magazine to be updated and inspired. When will she have time for a game of croquet?

The Burrows garden is filled with heirloom varieties of plants that define the practices of the 19th century, including:

Sweet Autumn Clematis (Clematis paniculata):
Native to Japan, this late blooming climber is breathtaking. With a sweet smell, almost akin to almond, Clematis can surely please.

Evening Primrose (Oenothera missourensis)
Originally found in South Central United States, this vigorous perennial has a trailing habit.

Love-in-a-Mist (Nigella damascena)
This is a unique flower from southern Europe that offers texture and color. Love-in-a-Mist has papery-textured flowers with wiry foliage. Both flowers and seed pods are great in cut flower or dried arrangements.