Fall is here and I’m still nursing an elbow injury that I got last April right before we moved to The Little Brick. My ideas for a summer of gardening had to be put aside. No serious digging, pruning or shovel work for me.

So I took to the gardens and field with my camera and my eyes to observe what was growing and take stock of what survives from gardens planted by the Wesbrook family, who tended this house and property from 1941 until 2012. Our five acres are bisected by the road, and the piece across the way includes a stone barn foundation and the location of a former garden the Wesbrooks planted in the war years. This is what it looked like then:

In the summer the field was blanketed with daisies, clover and timothy.

The edge where the stone wall is so visible in this 1940s photo is now covered in wild grapevines and stinging nettles. But in the tangle phlox, foxglove, daffodils, globe thistle, bellflowers and thyme still grow. After mowing this summer we discovered that a huge part of the field is thyme as far as you can see. It smells herbal for a few hours after mowing. Old apple trees grow up from the field, and their treetops are most easily seen from above at the road.

From spring to fall I’ve been finding plants from this garden legacy. I refer to it as the Lost Garden at The Little Brick. It may take me five or more years to properly restore these gardens, but I’ll start slow and deliberately. Much to dream about in the coming winter months.