Have you ever admired a stone wall winding through a field in New England? The most common antique structures in New England are its rock walls. Many were built by our European ancestors, but stone masons continue their craft even to this day, adding their personal, artistic touch to their work.

Before stone walls were built, farmers used wooden, zig-zag rail fences to separate their farms. It has been estimated that there are 16,000 miles of stonewalls across the six New England states. Most were built between 1790 and 1820 during an expansion of farmland.  The period from 1775 to 1825 was known as the Golden Age of stone wall building when more stone walls were built than at any other time. The walls served as boundary markers as farmers each spring moved them aside. Horses and oxen would drag stones on a wooden skid to the sides of their field. Taller walls served as pens for their farm animals.

Ocean Point Inn has been updating its gardens and rock walls. More photos coming after the “Spring Thaw.”

There are many online videos devoted to the construction of sturdy walls. Here are some helpful hints.

1. Safety – wear long pants, long sleeves, goggles, gloves and steel-toed shoes.
2. Work in an uncluttered workspace.
3. Sort and arrange your rocks in piles:
° Large, flat stones for your base
° Heartstones for filler rocks
° Pinning stones – smaller stone wedges to hold up the face rocks
° Face rock – to show off sides of the walls
° Through stones – long rocks placed sideways to tie face sides together
° Topping rocks – Flat, wide rocks to finish off wall and put weight on top
4. Dig your base 8″-12″ and level off.
5. Keep your course level. Use a string to keep your fence even.

The more time you take to place your stones, the better the outcome will be!

Just a few days ago we were in the middle of “Stella,” a March blizzard, but hope springs eternal that the gardens will be blooming soon at OPI!

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Ten years ago the Ocean Point Inn began increasing and amplifying its gardens and general landscaping. At that time our main features were the beautiful red geraniums that decorated many of our buildings.  This has been an OPI tradition for the past seventy years.

We now boast eighteen gardens decorated with perennials of many heights, colors and textures.  We have three stonewalls which help define our boundaries and provide backdrops for some of our gardens.

Over the years our plants spread and multiplied providing new plants to create new gardens. Most seasons they survive but some have to  be replaced due to Maine’s harsh winter weather.

A water element is always relaxing and you can enjoy watching our ducks swimming in the duck pond among our beautiful waterlilies. You can see that even the ducks take time to admire our aquatic plants and smell the lilies!

We use some of our plantings as cut flowers in the Inn.  Some of our favorite flowers include hydrangeas, hosta, rose campion, daisies, black-eyed Susans, phlox and lobelia.  The flowers flourish near the ocean and really love the fog!

Enjoy sitting amidst our gardens while enjoying the peace and solitude, a book, a cold beverage or a gorgeous OPI sunset!

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All Photo Rights Reserved © Bev Tabet Photography