Garden Beds

The garden beds range from full sun to shade, with varying soil types and levels of moisture, similar to the various habitats we find in nature. 

Butterfly Garden (Main Bed)

The main bed, also called the Butterfly Garden, is most like a traditional garden bed with sun to shade , deep soil amended with Sweet Peat (adjust for a more neutral pH),  and average moisture.  The plants in this garden are mostly plants you might find in a meadow.  A few of the plants here (such as Blanket Flower) are more typical further to our west, where this habitat is more common (in Connecticut meadows are very quickly taken over by brush and trees).  But most are native to Connecticut or native just a bit further south or west.


Common Name Botanical Name Where From Native to
Butterfly Weed Asclepias tuberosa Earth Tones CT
Common Milkweed Asclepias syriaca Earth Tones CT
Bluets Houstonia caerulea Earth Tones CT
Coreopsis Coreopsis verticulata? Allison's Garden MD
New England Aster Aster novi-angliae Earth Tones CT
Bee Balm Monarda didyma Teresa's garden NJ
Wild Blue Lupine Lupenis perennis Twombly CT
Sneezeweed Helenium autumnale Earth Tones CT
Ox Eye,
False Sunflower
Heliopsis helanthoides Earth Tones CT
Garden Phlox
Summer Phlox
Phlox paniculata Earth Tones NY
Jacob's Ladder Polonium reptans Earth Tones NY
Beardtongue Penstemon digitalis Earth Tones CT
Woodland Phlox
Wild Blue Phlox
Phlox divaricata Teresa's Garden,
Earth Tones
Black Eyed Susan,
Eastern Coneflower
Rudbeckia fulgida Teresa's Garden PA
Purple Coneflower Echinacea purpurea Earth Tones &
Teresa's Garden
Lurid Sedge Carex lurida Earth Tones CT
Wild Bergamot Monarda fistulosum Earth Tones CT
Blanket Flower,
Common Giallardia
Giallardia aristata Earth Tones midwest
Sun Drop
Evening Primrose
Oenothera 'Cold Crick' Earth Tones CT
Creeping Phlox
Moss Pink
Phlox subulata Earth Tones Long Island
Foamflower Tiarella cordifolia Earth Tones CT
Wild Geranium
Wood Geranium
Geranium maculatum Earth Tones CT
Doll's Eye, Baneberry Actaea pachypoda Earth Tones CT
Eastern Blue Star Liatris scariosa Twombly CT
Prairie Phlox Phlox pilosa Earth Tones CT
Blue False Indigo Baptisia australis Earth Tones PA

Connecticut Hill Top

The hillside directly behind and above the main Butterfly Garden is full sun to part shade - a typical Southern New England upper slope.  Plants found in this environment are adapted to a dry, rocky or sandy microclimate, often with acidic soils.  Hikers will recognize the classic heaths of our New England hilltops: blueberry, bearberry and crowberry, alongside the aromatic sweet fern, a small shrub often found growing amongst the blueberries.

Native To
Sweet Lowbush Blueberry Vaccinium angustifolium Earth Tones CT
Bearberry Arctostaphylos uva-ursi Earth Tones CT
Black Crowberry Empetrum "Compass Harbor" Earth Tones Northern New England
Harebell Campanula rotundifolia Earth Tones CT
Stiff-Leaved Aster Aster linariifolius Earth Tones CT
Wild Pink Silene caroliniana Twombly CT
Prickly Pear Opuntia humifusa Twombly CT
Sweet Fern Comptonia peregrina Roadside CT
Field Pussytoes Antennaria neglecta Earth Tones  
Wild Stone Crop Sedum ternatum Earth Tones  
Wood Iris Iris cristata Earth Tones  
Wintergreen Gaultheria procumbens Earth Tones  
Virginia Strawberry Fragaria virginiana Earth Tones  
Wild Live Forever Sedum telephioides Earth Tones  
Dwarf Cinquefoil   Wild on site  
American Pennyroyal   Wild on site  



Connecticut Low Slope

The base of the shaded rock wall as you move to the south has rich, black soil and water seeps from the hillside above - a "low slope" habitat.  Ferns, such as marginal wood fern and sensitive fern, grow there naturally, along with some horsetails that grew in the poor fill just below and were transplanted.  Woodland plants such as Green Dragon, doll's eye, maidenhair fern, and sharp-lobed hepatica have been added.

Connecticut Mid-Slope

The partly shaded terraces directly above have not been planted, but after they were cleared of brush native hayscented fern has really been taking over.  The upper terraces are our "mid slope" habitat - somewhat dryer and sunnier than down below. The hayscented ferns looks attractive for now but have a reputation for becoming invasive in regions of high deer population since the deer won't eat it. 

The southern most shade bed is somewhat dryer and sunnier than expected.  We are experimenting with what types of natives are best suited for this bed.  At this time we have some transplants, including Christmas fern, white wood aster, blue wood aster, round leafed pyrola, spotted pipsiswa,  Jack in the pulpit, and red trillium, Dutchman's Breeches, dwarf ginseng, spring beauties, and Solomon's Seal.   Black Cohosh and bloodroot have been added.

See a map of the beds

Click here to see a map of the flower beds. 


Species List

Species list as of January 2009:

Marginal Woodfern
Sensitive Fern
Spinulose Woodfern
Ostrich Fern
Royal Fern
Lycopodium (Princess Pine)
Equisetum (Horsetails)

Brown-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia fulgida)
Bee Balm
Beardtongue (Penstemon Digitalis)
Butterfly Weed
Black Crowberry
Bear Berry
New England Aster
White Wood Aster
Blue Wood Aster
Spotted Pipseswa
Wild Ginger
May Apple
Swamp Azalea
Merry Bells
Jack in the Pulpit
Wood Poppy

Mountain Laurel* (dominant)
Sweet Fern

Red Oak
White Oak
White Pine
Larch (Tamarack)
Black Birch


Native Plants Prior to Planting

The thing about native plants is that they are adapted to our environment and some are pretty good at establishing themselves without any human help.   Here are some native species that found their own way to the garden during the time it was abandoned:

Marginal Woodfern (growing in the stone retaining walls)
Interrupted fern
Lycopodium (Princess Pine)
Equisetum (Horsetail)
Sensitive Fern
Spinulose Woodfern
Christmas Fern
Lady Fern
Hayscented Fern

Asters (sp?)
Goldenrod (sp?)
Spotted Pipsissiwa
Round-Leaved Pyrola
Pink Lady Slipper
Dwarf cinquefoil
American Pennyroyal
Black-Eyed Susans (Rudbeckia hirta)

Lowbush blueberry (sp?)
Mountain Laural
Highbush blueberry
Sweet Fern
Virginia Creeper
Poison Ivy


Exotic & Invasive Plants Removed

These plants originated from the earlier gardens and had to be removed as they are not native:
Black Swallowwort (horribly, horribly invasive - this covered much of the site)
Note there is a large stand of hayscented fern around the ruins of an outbuilding.  This fern is native, but becomes invasive in areas with high deer populations because the deer will not eat it.

Thank You...

Eklund Garden was made possible by a generous grant from the Iroquois Pipeline Operating Company.

Eklund Garden is dependent on a volunteer-based, grass-roots effort.  Opportunities abound for involvement.

Lending a Hand...


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