Amateur green thumbs, seasoned gardeners, and garden-variety appreciators love Hoboken Historical Museum’s annual Secret Gardens Tour, which took place on Sunday, June 3. Garden owners, Hoboken Garden Club members, and Hoboken Historical Museum volunteers greeted guests at each of 10 stops. The self-guided tour took about three hours.
Resident Valerie D’Antonio, one of the committee co-chairs, said the tour usually gets about 400 attendees. The tour often has raised as much as $10,000. All proceeds support the Hoboken Historical Museum’s programs and operations.
The museum, which was founded in 1986, hosts a variety of special exhibits, tours, events, and lectures as well as programs for children and adults that educate the public about Hoboken’s history.
Volunteer Caryl Heard said she gains “creative inspiration” from the tour. “Before we redesigned our garden, we had gone on the garden tour several times, and we saw there were so many possibilities … so it inspired me to look into it and try,” she said. “I always pick up some little new tidbit I didn’t know before.”
This year’s tour showed off clever solutions to the perennial Hoboken backyard problem of too little space and too much shade.
The tour was launched 21 years ago as a nod to Hoboken founder Col. John Stevens, who was a skilled horticulturist, credited with importing the first camellia, chrysanthemum, and several peony varieties to America.
Stops on the tour included a two-tiered garden with a double waterfall-style fountain and a garden created in a glass-enclosed solarium, featuring items repurposed as planters.—Marilyn Baer