Atkinson Garden Club
"To promote interest in home gardening, aid in the protection of native plants, trees, and wildlife and further civic beautification."

The Garden of Marta and Stephen Fabbrucci


Congratulations to Marta and Stephen Fabbrucci, whose stunning and eclectic garden and landscape designs have been recognized by the Atkinson Garden Club with their Garden of the Month Award! Mrs. Fabbrucci, proprietress/designer of Marta Fabbrucci Interiors, is, by all accounts, the creative influence and prime mover behind their exterior space. Friends have described her design preferences as chic, stylish and uncluttered – all clearly reflected in her gardens’ ambiance.

The Fabbrucci’s have resided at their 6 Merrill Avenue residence since the late seventies, and Marta describes their early years there as being consumed by clearing huge numbers of trees, overgrown shrubs, boulders and brush. Having cleared the property frontage, a portion of the rambling stone wall that welcomes visitors was assembled by Marta, and eventually completed by a local contractor, all from stones unearthed nearby.

And through all the years they have called Merrill Ave. home, their gardening and landscaping efforts have been a constant work in progress. Now the wall provides an enduring backdrop to sumptuous displays of roses, white and pink tinged peonies, campanula, lilies, and long, graceful arcs of shade loving leucothoe. Several varieties of clematis, including the bright purple and pink Ville de Lyon, the violet blue, wavy petals of Parisienne, and the mauve and pink hues of Bees Jubilee can be seen winding their way up their individual trellises. In a wonderful textural surprise, the residual foliage from clumps of gone-by daffodils has been neatly and artfully braided, creating a glossy, green ‘do for the border!

Passing through the stone entrance, visitors are amazed at the vast, wide swath of fragrant lilies of the valley. Its far border resembles a long, beckoning arm, urging the eye to delight in a nearby berm bursting with large and small hosta, impatiens and painted ferns – mature shade trees providing a living umbrella over all.

Easing further back on the property, one is greeted by a magnificent flowering island, whose large, stepping stones provide a sure footing on which to meander through the impressionist bursts of scent and hue. Tall, graceful spikes of purple, blue and white foxglove sway languidly above clumps of purple and pink echinacea, golden helianthus, dazzlingly white daisies and dainty masses of pink begonias. The deep burgundy leaves of a Japanese maple are in sharp contrast to the crinkled white petals of a jaunty peony. Dark purple and low growing ajuga spreads as a counterpoint to pendulous Japanese andromeda, a fiery red azalea and pink pastel meadow rue. Further along are English roses, Japanese and Siberian Iris, and viburnum carlesii, possessed of an exotic spicy vanilla fragrance. Caladium and cotoneaster abound, nestled among the fairy like bleeding hearts and sturdy rhododendrons.

For some time now, Marta has been clearing a pathway from the rise behind her home, weaving this way and that, along the natural contours of the steep woodland descent. Her destination is the large, tranquil pond below, where egrets, blue heron and perigrines have been observed and a cacophony of bull frogs abound! At water’s edge, dragonflies do their spritely dance and huge, flat slabs of natural stone jut out from the shore, secluded from the neighborhood above. The perfect place for an afternoon picnic with family and friends – or a gathering which references a different time and place, filled with unfettered gaiety and excess - where a certain Mr. Gatsby from West Egg was known to gaze across the water in search of his version of the American dream. Marta is considering plans for both!