College of the Atlantic's Turrets Seaside Garden, maintained by head gardener Barbara Meyers.College of the Atlantic's Turrets Seaside Garden, maintained by head gardener Barbara Meyers.

Tucked away on the College of the Atlantic campus on Mount Desert Island, the Turrets Seaside Garden is easily overlooked. In fact, the 4,000-square-foot space it occupies was overlooked for decades. It was a tennis court in the earliest days of the giant stone “cottage” known as Turrets, a fortress-like residence built in 1895 by Bruce Price (the architect behind Quebec’s Château Frontenac) for an Ohio candle-manufacturing magnate and his bride. Only later did the family replace their court with a grand Italianate garden.

<em>Douglas Merriam</em>Douglas MerriamAnd then, for years, it wasn’t so grand. By the time COA bought the building in 1973, Turrets had been bought and sold repeatedly; the building and grounds had fallen into disrepair. For the next few decades, students periodically cleared brush from the old garden, but mostly it languished, overgrown and forgotten.

Read more..