Early Days at the Calendar Garden
This view of what is today the Calendar Garden and part of the Elkhart County Park System in New Paris, Indiana was taken in June of 2003 when the garden was in it's infancy. This looks north from the current location of the summer pavilion . The pile of brush in the background covers the area now devoted to winter. Steve Bell of Bell's Nursery in nearby Wakarusa did the clearing and tilling of the area as well as the coming excavation and hardscaping. The soil seen here is unusual for Elkhart County and is a sort of reddish clay. Mrs. DeFries reports that in the Nineteenth century this area was used for forming and firing bricks used in local construction. The house on the property, built in the 1880's, is this kind of soft brick as well as the buildings in the garden.
Work commenced here on the 19th of June and several days later, on the summer solstice, Mrs DeFries and Jon Cutrell planted the first plant, a catalpa tree, which blooms around the solstice just out of sight here on the left.
Original film photograph by Jon Cutrell.