Garden Highlights

You could say that our entire forty-acre property is like one big garden, but horticulture really reigns supreme in our Harvest and Healing Gardens. In addition to keeping the ornamental plants flourishing all over the Castle Hill landscape, Leita remains at the helm of the Castle Hill Garden program, after five years as our chief horticulturist. She is now aided by a new member of the team, who began at Castle Hill this spring, her assistant Maddie.

Our horticulturists Leita and Maddie

Leita (l) with her new assistant Maddie

I recently spent a glorious harvest day with them to showcase the veggies, flowers and fruits of their labors. The Harvest Garden was at full production level and luckily the day was not too hot or humid – somewhat of a rare occurrence this summer, but we are not complaining! We know that the heat does not stifle nearly as much in Newport, especially out at Castle Hill, with the cooling waters of the Atlantic Ocean and the Narragansett Bay lapping at our shores. It must be all that sea air that keeps the verdure in Newport looking ever so lush. Even through this summer’s drought!

Maddie tends the garden, greenhouse in background

Leita tending to the garden

Maddie harvesting fresh chives

Pulling carrots for harvest

Maddie shows off a fresh cut nasturtium flower

Leita sitting amongst the blooming snapdragon flowers

New to the Harvest Garden this year is the installation of a deer fence, which has helped preserve the growing cycle of the plants immensely. We are happy to share the land with the deer folk, just not our produce!

Deer fence surrounding garden and greenhouse

The Harvest Garden at Castle Hill has taken shape over the last several years. Our newest garden, now transformed into a Healing Garden, was merely a patch of grass down by our beach house rooms just a few years ago, now it sports a variety of restorative and medicinal plants.

Arched Gate into flower garden

Healing herbs grown in garden section

Reddish zinnia flowers in bloom

Flowers in bloom in garden

It is the perfect spot for our weekly meditation sessions held on Thursdays at 10am or just a place to relax for a while and see what floats by.

A monarch butterfly flying over garden bed

Back in the big garden, the day’s harvest is complete.

Fresh grown herbs and vegetables from garden

Now it is time to bring all the fresh produce up to the chefs.

Garden harvest in back of golf cart

Thank you, Leita and Maddie, for letting me follow in your footsteps for a day.

 – Shea C Nelson