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Category Archives: Long Island Gardening

North Fork Foodie Tour 2013

209636-250The North Fork of Long Island celebrates the ongoing tradition of sustainable farming, vineyards and fishing with the 7th ‘North Fork Foodie Tour’ on September 8th. The annual tour offers visitors a chance to meet the extraordinary people, farmers, wine makers, fishermen and artisan who have dedicated their lives to

producing unique local foods and wines and to learn how they do it.
You can purchase tickets and pick up a map of tour locations and information on times of special events anytime after 9 a.m. at Peconic Land Trusts Agricultural Center at Charnews Farm, Youngs Avenue between Rts. 25 and 48. Then you’re off on your own personal do-as-you please foodie tour.
View exhibits and cooking demonstrations at Charnews Farm and visit farms and food producers throughout the North Fork, including:
KOPPERT CRESS searches the world for unusual varieties of aromatic herbs grown as micro-vegetables. Restaurants use them as exotic garnishes for their most elegant dishes.
CROTEAUX VINEYARD specializes in rosé wine. Idyllic barnyard, vineyard, tastings and recipes.
LAVENDER BY THE BAY offers fresh-cut and dried lavender, lavender plants and
products. Learn about beekeeping, lavender culture and lore.
TASTE OF THE NORTH FORK produces food products made with local ingredients: pestos, jams and jellies, mustards, vinegars, dessert sauces, teas and more. See the kitchen where they are made and have a taste.
BLOSSOM MEADOW HONEY produces high-end artisanal raw and unfiltered honeys, beeswax candles, restorative personal care products, and beeswax crayons. Taste the honey, view a working observation hive and learn how those beeswax products are made.
 SPECIAL EVENTS/LIMITED TOURS
BROWDER’S BIRDS – Chris and Holly Browder raise organic poultry using the movable coop system described in Michael Pollan’s book The Omnivore’s Dilemma and the film Food, Inc. Meet them at barn at Charnews Farm at for a special walking tour and talk about their unique operation. One tour ONLY at 1:00 pm.
CATAPANO DAIRY FARM small and family operated, it raises goats and makes fresh milk cheeses, yogurts, fudge and goat milk skincare products. Guided tours at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3.

North Fork Bounty from Shorecrest vegetable garden

GOODALE FARMS – Long Island’s only full scale dairy offering cow and goat milk and many types of farmstead cheeses and other dairy products. Cheese making demonstration at 10:00 am. Goat milking at 4:00.
THE FARM Learn about biodynamic farming techniques that produce extraordinary flowers and vegetables, especially heirloom tomatoes, and heal the earth at the same time. Tours at 11:30, 12:30, 1:30 ana 2:30.
KRUPSKI’S FARM – Al Krupski takes you into his fields to show and tell you how his multi-generational family have made their farm thrive by changing their focus from a limited number of wholesale crops to a diverse offering of vegetables, fruits, and free range poultry sold retail. Tours at 11:30, 12:30, 1:30, 2:30, 3:30.
THE SQUARE – Award winning Chef Keith Luce, takes you on tasting tour of his new Greenport venture which includes MAIN – a casual restaurant featuring local seafood, PREP – a take-out window purveying flatbread pizzas and house-cured meats, NOSH – which features house-made ice creams, baked goods, salads, sandwiches, teas and coffees and MEET- a wine and spirit tasting room & artisan food shop. One tour only at 1:00 pm.
McCALL WINES – In addition to producing wines served at some of Manhattan’s finest restaurants, this historic 100 acre farmstead raises grass-feed Charolias cattle, a French breed known for their low-fat meat, and sells rare speciality cheeses. Russ McCall leads tours of this beautiful property at 10:30, 11:30, 12:30, 1:30.

 

SANG LEE FARMS shows its organically grown vegetables, heirloom tomatoes, baby greens, mesclun, herbs, flowers and specialty Asian greens. Tastings all day. Guided tour and talk at 2:00 p.m.
SHINN ESTATE VINEYARDS Learn about the vineyard’s low-impact sustainable farming, taste the results. Only ONE guided walking tour with wine tastings at 12 noon. [At other times Foodie Tourists get a free taste with any purchased tasting.]
SATUR FARMS specializes in leafy vegetables, heirloom tomatoes, root vegetables and
herbs that it sells to the region’s high end restaurants which demand the finest ingredients. Open only for one guided walking tour at 11:30 a m.
TY LLWYD FARM has been an active family farm since 1870. It is the only certified raw milk dairy on Long Island. It raises DeKalb Gold chickens, ducks and geese; and grows vegetables and unusual varieties of potatoes. Tours at 1:00 and 3:00. Limited to 15 people per tour.Tickets – $25, Children under 12 free.

My Morning Walk in Southold on the North Fork of Long Island

My Morning Walk through the gardenMy morning walk on the beachIMG_0522This June morning was perfect weather for a walk on the beach and through the Shorecrest Bed and Breakfast gardens. Sitting by the waters edge on the Long Island Sound beach in Southold, listening to the sound of the waves lapping gently on the shore and the birds calling was so relaxing and beautiful I made a short video to share with you. You can see it on the Shorecrest Bed and Breakfast Facebook Page. Enjoy, and please come visit soon.

North Fork Long Island Memorial Day Weekend Events by Shorecrest Bed and Breakfast

Visitors to Greenport on Long Island on Memorial Day weekend, beginning Friday, May 25th, will be treated to a variety of entertainments.

Tall Ships

This is a fantastic chance to see some of the world’s most beautiful ships under full sail. The ships will arrive on Friday the 25th and will stay until departure on Tuesday May the 29th. While the ships are docked in Greenport, all visitors are welcome to step aboard and chat with the members of the ships crews. The overwhelming beauty of the ships on the move in full sail is magnificent, being able to step aboard and chat with the crew is the hypothetical icing on the cake.

c/o Tall Ships America

Some of the ships you can expect to see in port are:

  • The Pride of Baltimore
  • The Pride of Baltimore II
  • Picton Castle
  • The H.M.S. Bounty
  • John J. Harvey Fireboat
  • The Lynx
  • Unicorn

These boats are part of the Tall Ships Challenge Race Series that originates in Savannah, Georgia. Once the vessels depart from Greenport, they are headed to Newport, Rhode Island, and then onto Halifax and Nova Scotia. The ships are commemorating the bicentennial celebration of the War of 1812.

Visitors who want to tour the ships and interact with crew members will be able to do so from Saturday, May 26th until Monday, May 28th from 10am until 6pm. There is no charge for children 12 and under, adult tickets are $7, and senior or veteran tickets are $5. The Shorecrest Bed and Breakfast Inn will offer free Tall Ships tickets to those who stay over for the three night Memorial Day weekend. While visiting the ships don’t forget to check out the vendors in town and on Front Street. They will close each day at 6pm. Also, remember to bring your camera!

Long Island Wine Country Spring Passports

While enjoying your stay on Long Island during Memorial Day weekend 2012, take the time to enjoy the 2012 Long Island Wine Country Spring Passport event. This event began on March 31st and runs through June 2nd. Long Island wine aficionados can pick up their passport for free at any one of the following participating wineries.

  • Anthony Nappa
  • Baiting Hollow Farm Vineyard
  • Bedell Cellars
  • Castello di Borghese Vineyard & Winery
  • Clovis Point
  • Comtesse Therese Winery & Bistro
  • Corey Creek
  • Croteaux
  • Diliberto Winery
  • Duck Walk Vineyards North
  • Duck Walk Vineyards South
  • Empire State Cellars
  • Gramercy Vineyards
  • Harbes Family Farm & Winery
  • Jamesport Vineyards
  • Jason’s Vineyard
  • Lieb Family Cellars
  • Macari Vineyards & Winery
  • Martha Clara
  • Old Field
  • Palmer
  • Peconic Bay
  • Pellegrini
  • Pugliese
  • Raphael
  • Roanoke
  • Sannino Bella Vita
  • Scarola
  • Sherwood House
  • Shinn Estate
  • Sparkling Pointe
  • Suhru
  • T’Jara
  • Waters Crest
  • Wolffer Estate

Those who visit at least ten of the wineries that are participating in this event will receive a complementary tasting of a listed featured wine along with the purchase of any in-house tastings. Visitors should have their passports stamped at the wineries after purchasing a minimum of one bottle of that winery or vineyard’s featured wines. Visitors who have ten stamps on their passports will receive:

  • A chance at winning great prizes that include a fabulous East End Experience and more.
  • The experience of delightful wines and new wineries to visit.
  • 2 tickets for admission for the price of one to the 2012 Taste of Summer event at the Fairgrounds Barn in Old Bethpage Village.

To take advantage of your prizes you must:

  • Turn in your stamped passport at one of the participating wineries before June 1st, 2012.
  • Mail it to LIWC before May 28th, 2012.
  • Bring your stamped passport to the 2012 Taste of Summer event.

North Fork Bed and Breakfast Association Summer Event; Saturday July 16th 2011

Dance on Saturday 16th at Martha Clara Vineyard

Shorecrest Bed and Breakfast will be part of the North Fork Bed and Breakfast Association’s Summer Event, a celebration of tourism and agriculture which takes place this coming Saturday, July 16th.
I’ve been working hard in the Shorecrest garden getting it ready for the visitors who have bought tickets for the garden tour part of the day’s activities. Visitors with the garden tour ticket can start their day with a visit to the Cornell University Extension experimental gardens on Sound Avenue in Riverhead, NY. If you garden on Long Island and would like some great ideas on what will do well here, this is a good place to start. Do you have a sick plant or strange looking insects eating your veggies? These are the people to call or even send them a leaf in the mail; they will get back to you with an explanation and possibly a cure. Cornell is a great resource for both farmers and gardeners.
The tour of the gardens continues in the afternoon from 1pm to 4pm with visits to six bed and breakfast, each of whom will be hosting a local farmer or food producer. Sang Lee will have a stand at Shorecrest and we will be serving fresh mint tea and mint flavored lemonade using our own home grown mint leaves. From 4.30pm to 6.30pm, visitors can purchase tickets for a prix fixe dinner, choosing from one of 9 North Fork restaurants: The Old Mill Inn, Jamesport Manor Inn, The Portly Grape, Scrimshaw, Skippers, Sound View, and Porto Bello will offer their chef’s signature dishes to diners. To end the days with a bang, the NFBBA will be hosting a dance with the music of Trevor Davision at Martha Clara Vineyard from 7:15 to 10:30 p.m.
The bed and breakfast association is donating part of the profits of the summer event to Cornell Cooperative Extension, which supports gardening and agriculture on Long Island and is part of the association’s longstanding commitment to strengthen business on the North Fork while supporting agriculture and tourism.
Tickets can be purchased on line for all or just parts of the event through Brown Paper tickets. To find out more about activities throughout the year, check the association’s website at nfbba.org.
Related Topics: Cornell Cooperative Extension, Martha Clara Vineyards, and North Fork Bed and Breakfast Association

Shorecrest Bed and Breakfast – A North Fork Gardeners Diary

Daffodils on the berm in early April at the Shorecrest

Early harbingers of spring, daffodils wave to passers by on route 48 in Southold

Part 1

The Passionate Gardener

This is going to be a section of my blog devoted primarily to gardening. I hope to add to it weekly during the season. There are lots of things I want this blog to be about but one aspect of life I am most interested in and passionate about , is the beauty and wonder of nature, and particularly the artistic pleasure of harnessing those wonders in creating a garden

I feel so fortunate to be living and working on the North Fork of Long Island. With its rich soil and (fairly) agreeable climate for plant health, it is a fine place to grow a garden and I count my lucky stars every day as I cross the road from my BnB to the beach, walk by the waters of the Long Island Sound and if I time it right enjoy a glorious sunset.

My last three houses were purchased  largely because of their location on a parcel of land with  potential  for a  garden. I have ‘built’ or ‘created’ gardens throughout my life wherever I have lived. As an art student living in a rented ground floor ‘flat’  in East London with only enough money to buy a dozen or so packets of ‘four o’clock’, marigold, lupine and nasturtium seeds to spread around a bare patch of earth in the forlorn looking back yard, a carpet of color was created that lasted from Spring until Frost.

Pansies and perennials in the Shorecrest secret garden

Instant gratification; pansies can be planted in April for early color in the flower border

When I first moved to New York I took a summer rental in the Catskills so that although I was living in a Manhattan apartment with no garden  I could spend my vacation days double digging flower beds and ambitiously planting climbing roses and every variety of annual I could find for an ‘instant gratification’ garden. The landlord was quite happy to have me do the work and beautify his cottage, but obviously thought I was quite mental!

I grew up in England and one of my earliest memories is the garden my uncle made when we moved from the city to the countryside when I was 5 years old. Our house was literally built on what a few months before had been a cow pasture. I ‘helped’ him lay out the flower beds and lawns, double dig the vegetable patch, and use a giant hand sieve to remove stones and pebbles from the less than perfectly loamy soil. I was fascinated when he turned an oil drum filled with cement and the handles and axle from an old baby carriage into a giant roller to flatten and grade the soil before planting grass seed for a lawn that could have served as a putting green it was so perfect.

Speicies tulips April 2010 in the meditation garden

Species tulips return every year

Every day I walked to school past the gardens of my neighbors, all apparently committed horticulturists and took a great interest in the health and progress of their dahlias, roses, chrysanthemums et al. In England almost everyone is a gardener; it seems to be in the blood, but it probably also has a lot to do with being blessed with an almost perfect climate for a wide variety of flowering plants. We never had to contend with the humid but overly warm nights that you find in New York (bliss for fungus diseases, awful for plants prone to downy mildew and black spot) or a sudden inexplicable hail storm on an otherwise perfect June day with hail stones sharp as knives and the size of quarters that can decapitate every bud on the roses and hydrangeas; or Lyme ticks lurking in the shrubbery! But the North Fork of Long Island and my spot in particular, surrounded as it is by the moderating waters of the Long Island Sound and the Ashamomaque inlet of Shelter Bay is much more temperate and better suited to growing things than almost any other area of New York State. This, and the remarkable richness of the soil is why there are so many wineries and farms here also.

Flame colored hybrid tulips compliment red maple leaves in the Shorecrest meditation garden

What follows is the story of my current garden at the Shorecrest Bed and Breakfast. It is a work in progress as all gardens are and in my next post I will explain how it came into being. Hopefully you will follow along with the trials and tribulations of combating voles, sudden late frosts and all the drama and pleasure that go along with the job of taking care of a garden.

Meanwhile I have included photographs here of the garden as it looked earlier in the season as it just awoke from its winter sleep, in March and April.

Until the next time…..

Spring has sprung and the gardens are in bloom on Long Island’s North Fork

Some of my Southold Neighbors enjoying the April Sunshine

I was in Manhattan last week on Central Park South the day that the temperature reached ninety degrees. I love this time of year in New York City. The leaves were already bursting into pale green on the trees, almost two weeks earlier than here on the North Fork where the temperature never rose above 75 F that day. The water that surrounds our area moderates the temperature all year round, giving us milder temperatures in the winter and always providing a welcome cooling effect in the dog days of summer.

The salt air really suits certain plants, like hydrangeas which can be spectacular later in the year. My garden has giant ancient specimens lining the walk leading up to the front door that were planted in the 1920’s. The daffodils on the berm in front of my house are putting on quite a show right now and I am looking forward to the sequential plantings of flowering perennials that will follow right through the fall.

Hydrangeas from the Shorecrest garden later in the year

I’m a bit of a Jackson Pollock gardener when it comes to design and layout. This is largely due to time constraints (running a BnB is a busy life) and the large amount of space I needed to fill quickly ( the front border that flanks route 48 is 20 feet wide and almost 200 feet long) when I  decided to turn the wild jungle that was here in 2005 into the kind of tapestry of floral textures and colors that I have today. Of course, I’m never done and my next big project is the dividing hedge I want to grow between the East Lawn and the roadside border, to give both  privacy to the side of the house and create another ‘garden room’. I’m also thinking of turning the vacant plot next to me into a meadow of wild flowers and grasses. Stay tuned to my blog for pictures and progress reports!

Garden Conservancy Open Days program

Each month brings it’s own special glory in the garden and a great treat for me is to visit private local gardens that open to the public once a year as part of the Garden Conservancy Open Days program. Apart from the visual treat I learn a lot from these visits and often get some great ideas on plant combinations and what will and will not grow well here.

On May 1st there are several gardens open in Suffolk County ‘s Hamptons on the South Fork. Shorecrest Bed and Breakfast is delighted to offer special rates to guests who would like to visit these gardens and also spend some time on the North Fork enjoying our spectacular countryside, beaches, wineries and farms. We are just a ferry ride from the South Fork so please call Shorecrest  (631 765 1570) or visit our web site for more information on our ‘Garden Conservancy’ package which includes a private guided tour of our own acre garden.

Below is a list of the open gardens in May in Suffolk’s  East end. For directions and information on tickets please visit the Garden Conservancy web site. We’ll be posting more on gardening and gardens on the North Fork and the June Schedule for Open Days soon.

Open Gardens on the East End of Suffolk county New York On May 1st 2010

Abby Jane Brody

44 Glade Road
East Hampton, New York

This is primarily a woodland garden in which the native oaks are the upper story. It is a plant collector’s garden with a special emphasis on rare or unusual flowering trees and shrubs as well as herbaceous plants. The half-acre site has something in flower, often fragrant, almost every day of the year. In early May, the last of the camellias and hellebores may be in bloom, as well as daphne, epimediums, and hundreds of other woodland plants.

Margaret Kerr

1006 Springs Fireplace Road
East Hampton, New York

The garden, designed by Kerr, surrounds the house and studios on two acres that extend down to the wetlands of Accabonack Harbor. Kerr’s brick rug sculptures, inspired by tribal Middle Eastern carpets, are placed throughout the garden. One, a brick prayer rug, lies in a contemplative glade below her studio. Kerr collects plants grown in the Middle Ages in a courtyard around a fountain and lily pool highlighted with espaliered pear trees. In the spring, drifts of thousands of daffodils bloom in the fields around the house and are left unmown until late fall. Native grasses and wildflowers make islands of meadow during the summer.

Biercuk/Luckey Garden

18 Sayres Path
Wainscott, New York

This four-season woodland garden under a high oak canopy shelters a collection of rhododendrons, azaleas, kalmia, pieris, understory trees, perennials, bulbs, and tropicals in season. A mostly sunny, rear corner contains a pool designed as a pond with a waterfall and is surrounded with plantings which peak mid-July through October. Winding paths and stone walls enhance a sense of depth and elevation change on a mostly flat acre. There is something in bloom every season.

The Garden of Dianne B

86 Davids Lane
East Hampton, New York

Idyllically located between the East Hampton Nature Trail lovingly known as the ‘Duck Pond’ and an impressive apple orchard, this evolving new garden exists on a charmed acre. A grand magnolia and other splendid old trees provide the anchor, as well as hiding places for Dianne’s trove of odd woodland plants—especially her beloved jack-in-the-pulpits. This is a garden where layers of variegated plants, big circular leaves, unexpected sculptures, twisted trees, and weepers of all kinds provide much more drama than what is in bloom. Fritillaria are her specialty among thousands of spring bulbs and extraordinary tree peonies. It sets the stage for her garden website, her Hamptons Cottages and Gardens column, and embodies all the principles from her book, DIRT.

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