Green spaces to wander and roam during the warmer months
By Taylor Smith
Frenchtown along the Delaware River
The Delaware & Raritan Canal stretches more than 77 miles along the Delaware and Raritan Rivers.The park crosses Middlesex, Mercer, Burlington, Somerset, and Hunterdon counties within New Jersey. It is one of the state’s most popular avenues for kayaking, canoeing, running, walking, bicycling, and fishing. It is also a valuable wildlife corridor with recent bird surveys revealing more than 160 species of birds, almost 90 of which nest within its borders. The upper portion of the canal includes stops in charming Frenchtown, Stockton, and Lambertville, which are great weekend destinations for the arts, dining, and shopping.
Fordhook Farm of the W. Atlee Burpee Co.
In 1888, W. Atlee Burpee acquired several hundred acres of farmland in bucolic Bucks County. Today at Fordhook Farm, hundreds of new vegetables, annuals, and perennials are still grown, tested, and evaluated on a 60-acre test farm and network of gardens to guarantee Burpee seeds’ high standards of quality. In addition to the test plots, there are extensive display gardens of choice perennials, shrubs, and trees for sun and shade. Large-scale sculptures by Steve Tobin and Daisuke Shintani animate the landscape. The 16-acre core of the property, including the original Burpee Seed House, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. www.burpee.com.
Greenwood Gardens is a 28-acre formal Italianate garden located in the Short Hills section of Millburn in Essex County. Careful preservation has maintained the mossy-pebbled walkways, wooded hillside vistas, rustic stone tea houses, floral gardens, and colorful tiles.
The Hay Honey Farm
Since 1989, the extensive gardens of The Hay Honey Farm have been carefully added to the landscape in a naturalistic manner, with a respect for the history and topography of the site, and consistent with the broader surrounding atmosphere of Pleasant Valley. The plant collections reflect the diverse interests of the owners and the resident horticulturists, and are set within a dwarf conifer/spring bulb garden, a walled perennial border, hosta gardens, meadow, hayfields, a kitchen garden, a woodland garden of rhododendron and companion wildflowers, and a mostly native wild garden, home to a growing assortment of songbirds.