Stop and Smell the Rugosas

I love stumbling upon an unexpected gem in a small community. The first time I entered the Clark Art Museum in Williamstown, Massachusetts, I was blown away by their collection of Impressionism, with impressive works by Monet, Manet, Degas, Renoir, Cezanne, and a room devoted to American master Winslow Homer. I felt this same way in early July when I entered St. Andrews, New Brunswick, a seaside village of 1800 people and entered the Kingsbrae Gardens. Wave after wave of color greeted me from the bed of perennials, planted like an artist’s palette. Hummingbirds flew under the tall chestnut trees, water lilies dotted the fountains, and everywhere you looked, there was some whimsical sculpture or children’s playhouse nestled within the 27-acre grounds. My favorite section was the Scent and Sensitivity Garden, where you can smell the tangy lemon-scented geranium or the tropical pineapple sage (that really does smell like a pineapple) or touch the velvety soft leaves of lamb’s ear. On the way out, I bent down and took a big whiff of the sweet-smelling rugosas. For a moment, everything was bliss.

(Photo by Lisa Leavitt)