It’s the end of a busy day at White Flower Farm
in Morris, Connecticut, and a full moon shines on the nursery’s 300-acre property. Owner Eliot Wadsworth admires the moon garden’s latest blooms—‘cupcakes White’ cosmos, ‘Firefly Diamond’ yarrow, and ‘Casa Blanca’ lilies—shining in the moonlight.
“The flowers seem to glow, and the dark foliage becomes almost invisible,” Wadsworth says. The nursery’s founders, William Harris and Jane Grant, planted this all-white flowering border after visiting the famed White Garden at Sissinghurst Castle in Kent, England. At the time, Harris and Grant even considered building a nursery business solely on white-flowering plants. They quickly abandoned that idea, but the white flower border—also called the moon garden—has thrived for seven decades in the nursery’s display gardens.
Head gardener Cheryl Whalen, who has cared for the gardens for 20 years, says, “Over the years core plants like the white wisteria trees remain in the moon garden, but other perennials and annuals come and go as new cultivars are added to our nursery’s catalog.”
If you find yourself wishing to better experience your own garden under the night sky, consult Whalen’s list of favorite plants and where to place them in “Shimmering Plants,” page 9. Then use our tips to grow your own moon garden or enchanted container.