Winter Moth

A native of Europe and Western Asia, the Winter Moth was introduced to North America via Nova Scotia, and in the past decade has exploded in population in coastal New England. Adult moths hatch from their cocoons in late November. The flightless females crawl up trees to lay their eggs; one female ...

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Prairie Smoke and Harebells

I am always looking for attractive combinations of short, fill-in plants to grow among the larger perennials and shrubs in my coastal Maine garden. These plants function as a kind of living mulch, and add another layer of habitat to the garden. Mother Nature doesn’t separate her plants with bark ...

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Arnold Promise

While Fort Williams Park is beautiful year-round, the winter beauty is mostly black and white, featuring snow, stone and tree bark, with the ocean ranging from gray to green to blue in the background. The first bright color in the park begins now – late February to early March – when the ‘Arnold ...

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Beautiful Parasite

With a garden full of North American plants, I often dig up the ones that reproduce enthusiastically, and donate them to Fort Williams Park Foundation. A very appropriate species is Seaside Goldenrod, a well-behaved version that, as its name implies, does well near salt water. I first saw Seaside ...

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Feel Good About Giving Back

Consider Fort Williams Park for an altruistic boost! The Fort Williams Park Foundation is an organization that relies heavily on individuals and groups in the community, and our volunteer programs have been an amazing success. It’s because of our volunteers that we’ve made such impressive progress ...

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Ferns & Fiddleheads

In the Arboretum at Fort Williams Park, two of our most abundant native plants are the hay-scented fern, Dennstaedtia punctilobula, and sweetfern, Comptonia peregrina, which is classified as a shrub. Both of these plants are able to tolerate full sun and hot, dry conditions. The addition of native ...

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Time Your Mulch

  Adding mulch too early in the spring will delay plant growth, as mulch will keep the soil cool. On the other side of our growing season, adding mulch too soon in the fall will keep the soil warm (and moist) for a longer period of time, which can increase the incidence of ...

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