Celebrating the Southport Garden Stroll

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Thank you for your interest in and support of Pequot Library’s Southport Garden Stroll. To protect the health and safety of our guests, volunteers, and staff, Pequot Library has decided to cancel this year’s Garden Stroll. Though we cannot host this wonderful event this year, we look forward to hosting this fan favorite fundraiser again next year.

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Why the Southport Garden Stroll Matters
Pequot Library needs your help now, more than ever. The Library relies on vital fundraisers like the Garden Stroll to help us raise 80% of our operating budget. Proceeds from tickets and raffles provide the much-needed, unrestricted funds that support the day-to-day life of the Library. Without this fundraiser, Pequot Library’s free programs and services are at risk.

We need your support now to make sure that Pequot Library can continue to offer digital programs and activities for the community during our closure. Your generosity will also help Pequot Library provide the circulating books, invaluable Special Collections, dynamic exhibitions, and educational and engaging programs that you know and love when we are able to reopen. Donate now.

Your fundraising support allows Pequot Library to offer a robust calendar of exhibitions, storytimes, author talks, workshops, concerts, and educational programming for free to community members of all ages all year long. Thank you for generous support!

Featured Garden
The Wakeman Memorial gardens, featured on last year’s Southport Garden Stroll, have been recognized by the Archives of American Gardens at the Smithsonian Institution.

Completed in 1913, the stately Wakeman Memorial is a prominent historic building located in the center of the Southport Historic District. The house is the commanding focal point of the Southport Harbor. The garden flows around the house from sun (south) to partly sunny (northeast) to full shade (north and northwest) and then back to sun (southwest). A decision was made to make the gardens peak in late summer and fall, as well as attract hummingbirds, bees, and butterflies. The color palette of orange, purple, and chartreuse was selected to complement and soften the assertive, institutional red brick façade.

The sunny garden is located on the south-facing front of the house. The front garden is accessed by a staircase from the sidewalk on the street level. The upper garden is divided into two spaces by a walkway. Each is approximately 50 feet long by 30 feet wide. Originally a boring rectangle, the space was reworked with a series of curves that provides the illusion of depth, adding visual interest to the space. Turning the corner to the southwest is an informal herb garden and a very old wisteria tree that has sporadically bloomed over the years.  Every year the motto is “more is better.”

The main features of the shady rear garden to the north are two trees. The larger tree is an ulmus americana. This elm is approximately 90 years old and has been listed with The Notable Trees Project sponsored by the Connecticut Botanical Society, The Connecticut College Arboretum, and the Connecticut Urban Forest Council. The other large tree is an aesculus hippocastanum (horsechestnut). This tree is the survivor of a pair of trees gifted to George Brett by John Masefeld, the poet laureate of England, in the 1950s.

Local Resources
The Ecotype Project
Aspetuck Land Trust
Fairfield Audubon
Fairfield Garden Club
Greens Farms Garden Club
Sasqua Garden Club
Fairfield Pollinator Pathway
The Seed Huntress
CT NOFA: The Northeast Organic Farming Association of Connecticut
Bartlett Arboretum
Norwalk River Watershed Association
Ecological Landscape Alliance
New CT Farmer Alliance

Recommended Viewing
The Gardener is a documentary reflecting on the meaning of gardening and its impact on our lives.

Shortly before his passing at the age of 86, influential gardener and horticulturalist Frank Cabot recounts his personal quest for perfection at Les Quatre Vents, his 20 acres English style garden and summer estate.

Through the words of Cabot and his family, and with the participation of gardening experts and writers, the film looks back at this remarkable man’s personal story and the artistic philosophy that gave birth to one of the greatest gardens in the world. Learn more

Find out where to watch the film.

Scenes from the 2019 Southport Garden Stroll




Exclusive Media Sponsor

Sponsors & Supporters



June 5, 2020
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Caroline Owens Crawford
(203) 259-0346 ext. 113


Pequot Library
720 Pequot Avenue
Southport, CT 06890 United States
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(203) 259-0346
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