The Bolduc House Museum Gardens
Eighteenth century French Colonial American homes such as the Louis Bolduc House were surrounded by a wooden palisade fence to keep the roaming animals out. The fence enclosed the gardens as well. Usually these gardens were filled with the vegetables, kitchen and medicinal herbs, as well as the plants that were needed for other tasks. A small orchard and vineyard could also be found within the stockade. When you visit the Bolduc House Museum, don't miss our carefully articulated gardens behind the palisade. You will also be able to drive passed the fertile flood plain where the French grew such staples as wheat, tobacco, and indigo. The land-owners cooperated in farming the Grand Champ (or Big Field). Each land-owner was assigned their own narrow strips, called arpents, in the Grand Champ. They were also responsible to build and maintain the fence along their arpents. The Grand Champ is just east of St. Mary’s Road which is an extension of Main Street south of the Bolduc House Museum.
The LeMeilleur House gardens are four large perennial beds with showy colorful blooms from March through October. They are planted as tribute gardens to honor the Museum's first two directors, Lorraine Stange who succeeded her mother, Vergie Stange. These directors kept the "never-ending Bolduc House story" alive from 1961-2009. This yard also contains several fruit trees: pecan, apples, and chestnut.
Behind the LeMeilleur House is where we are building our Eastern Woodland Indian Village. There you will find a traditional Three Sisters Garden in which corn, beans, and squashes grow in a symbiotic relationship. Ask us to tell you the story of the three sisters when you visit.
The Linden House garden has a very large lawn where people can hold a wedding or larger garden party. The Linden House was named for a very large linden tree which died a few years ago. Now we have a baby linden tree growing to replace it. This yard also contains the Lewis & Clark Garden and a large stand of Ste. Genevieve Boxwoods with its secret hiding place that is large enough for an entire fourth grade class.
If our master gardener, Patti Naeger, is around when you come she'll be happy to give you a hands-on tour of the gardens - you might get to dig a few potatoes, pick some beans or pumpkins, or sample some grapes.
Zuts did NOT like this text and wrotehis own webpage about touring the gardens. He included lots of pictures.
“We had our wedding reception at the Bolduc House, 3 building French Colonial museum with authentic and inspiring architecture. Everything was better than we could have ever wished. There was plenty of space for all of our 60+ guest (even when the rain started). The gardens and landscape are beautiful and make a gorgeous back drop for photographs! The staff was more than accommodating and were able to handle the transition from outdoors to indoors (due to weather) with ease. A great place for a reception and outdoor ceremony”
- Audrey and Dave Deuel