A 20 year writer for DownEast magazine, Jane Lamb, recently published a book titled Master Gardeners of Maine. She dedicates it to many gardeners, Bernard McLaughlin being one. She writes: "Bernard McLaughlin who died in 1995 at the age of 98" thought "the secret of a long healthy life.......[was] is found in the garden." Interestingly she also dedicates her book to Currier McEwen who started gardening almost by accident in 1956 and spent the next 45 years developing spectacular iris hybrids. My mom has spoke of him as he was a long time resident of her area. Curiously enough, Mr. McEwen died at the age of 102.
The McLaughin Foundation has assumed the functions of Bernard's estate since 1996, its main mission is to keep the 20th century garden with all of its integrity, preserve the 19th century home and barn, and to create an educational center where horticulturists, hobbyists, and enthusiastic gardeners can experience all of the senses of life. The foundation, a nonprofit organization, has established a tea room where coffee and pastries are served. A gift shop that retails books, cards, prints and clothing. They have onsite volunteers that manage and run plant sales, rental of the facility for wedding and birthdays, and conduct many instruction workshops during the summer months. The educational center is a library that contains over 1000 books relating to gardening and botany, many of them being from Mr. McLaughlin's collection and many of them being donated. The Stephen and Tabitha King foundation has pledged funds to the library. The foundations infrastructure is a board of directors and a volunteer advisory committee who have worked very hard to open the garden gates to the public, and still .....admission is free.