Glastonbury Partners in Planting has worked with the The Historical Society of Glastonbury on many occasions. The first was a walking tour in South Glastonbury to visit historic homes and some of our member’s gardens. The funds generated supported the Society.
There have been three joint projects specifically at the Welles-Shipman-Ward House on Main Street in South Glastonbury which is run by the Society.
The first GPIP project in 2012 established a border of trees and shrubs to screen the closest neighbor from the newly reconstructed tobacco shed. Native plants were chosen for the planting, many of which would have been used by the early occupants of the house. These include witch hazel, an astringent; bayberry for candles; and blueberries and shadblow for drying and cooking.
Since 2013 GPIP has planted a small demonstration plot of tobacco plants near the new tobacco shed. The plants, donated by Ken and Howard Horton, show children and adults what tobacco farming is all about. These are tended through the summer and harvested on Farm Day in September. The plants are cut, left in the sun awhile to wilt so that the leaves don’t tear when they are strung, six-to-a-lath, and are hung to dry in the recently-opened tobacco shed
In 2015 GPIP enlarged the growing area to include a selection of heirloom vegetables. Varieties chosen show examples of what the early Welles and Shipman families may have had for dinner. Project chair Karen Rottner planted the corn, squash, potatoes, beets, carrots and onions. The plan is to involve children in the planting each spring and for young members of the Glastonbury Historical Society to tend the garden.
– Chairperson: Karen Rottner