Page 1

ANDROPOGON'S ONLY COpy PLEASE RETURN

DES IGN AND MANAGEMENT GU IDE Manitoga: Man With Nature Center Garrison, New York

Andropogon Associates, Ltd. Ecological Planning & Design

ArcllitC(fS, Lalldscape Architects 6:- PIc1I1I1C1'S 37-+ ShIll'S L1IJC Plliladclphic1 PA 19118 (215) .f87-07()()


Andropogon Associates) Ltd. Ecological Planning & Design 6935 ScotJorth Road Phi/adelphia PA 19119

DESIGN AND MANAGENENT GUIDE FOR MANITOGA A Preserve of The Nature Conservancy Garrison, New York

Made possible by a grant from 7~e

National Endowment for the Arts Design Arts Program Grant #11-4213-264 By

Carol Levy Franklin December 1982

Architects, Landscape Architects & Planners

(215) 844-6500


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

As a cousin of the late Russe L Wright, I wa.3 able to spend many weekends at Manitoga working on the garden and discussing

it with him.

These discussions and

t~e

letters and articles

Russel has written are the primary data base.

Additional

research for this study consisted of informal interviews with friends, relatives, and employees of Wright who had worked with him in shaping the landscape in the 1970s.

Of these I

thank especially Anne Wright, Russel's daughter, who participated in the design of Manitoga from its early begin::.ings; Joe Chapma;l and r<largaret Spader, Wright's closest and most beloved friends; Martin Jarsky, who helped Wright in the design of t.he later gardens; Baldev Raju, who worked with Russel from 1972 to 1976, helping him to construct the new paths and to improve many of the older ones; Marley Thomas Beers, Russel's biographer, who \vorked with him to create the "Feel Nature Tour"; and Larry Pardue, whose horticultural knowledge Russel drew on frequently. Joe Chapman, Margaret Spader, Martin Jarsky, and Anne Wright reviewed the manuscript of this study and their extensive comments have been gratefully incorporated. A number of other people were also

extre~mely

helpful:

Alan

GUssow, a Manitoga Board member, who provided a larger perspective, and Al Fromeberger, the previous caretaker, who rooted out much of the available written material.

I am also grateful to

Susan Eirich Dehne, the energetic and creative new director, for her cowmitment to this project, and to Peter Keibel, the caretaker/naturalist, whose untiring efforts to restore the garden have begun to show results.

I also wish to thank the

people at my firm of Andropogon Associates:

Peter Benton, for

his beautiful and exacting site plan; Nan Benton, for her many hours of typing and editing; Leslie and Rolf Sauer for their help in writing and editing; and my husband Colin for his constant support of Manitoga and this study.

Finally, I

thank the National Endowment for the Arts, who funded this study.

We hope they are as pleased as we to have provided

the impetus for the revival of this great national treasure.


EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The Design and Management Guide documents Wright's design intent and details appropriate vegetation management needed to preserve its subtle design effects.

techni~~es

The guide,

which includes a landscape management plan, will enable The Nature conservancy to restore the dramatic character of the original garden, which has been deteriorating since Wright's death in 1976, as well as provide the basis for master planning and interpretive programs now underway. Russel Wright's Manitoga is one of the few P~erican

exa~ples

of a native

garden on a grand scale and follows in the tradition

of Frederick Law Olmstead and Jens Jensen.

Once a private

estate, Manitoga is now owned by The Nature Conservancy, which has since wrestled with the problem of how to maintain it and how to present it to the public.

Manitoga is not simply a

public garden or a nature preserve, but a fragile work of art that reveals to 'the visitor the natural history and beauty of the indigenous

lar~scape.

As a dynamic, ecological garden

of changing plant communities, it requires sophisticated landscape management techniques quite different from the standard horticultural approach.

With proper management,

keyed to an understanding of its revolutionary design aesthetic, Manitoga could serve as a model for many public parks, nature centers, and private landscapes.

This project is supported by grant #11-4213-264 from the National Endowment

fo~

the Arts Design Arts Program.


SUMMilRY OF NEA GRANT STUDY

The purpose of this study is twofold.

First, to meet the

need for professional documentation of Wright's design within the context of his life-long concerns; and second, to provide design and management recommendations for the director and staff in order to restore the dramatic character of the original garden and to maintain and enhance it for the future. The study is presented in five sections: 1.

A brief biography of Wright I s life and 路the influences which shpaed Manitoga.

2.

A description of the Garrison site, its location, and initial character.

3.

A summary of Wright's major design ideas.

4.

Design and management guide.

This section contains a

discussion of each path or landscape event, which includes: a.

The general design organization of each

The concept.

path or whole event, understood as a plan. b.

The story line.

A description of the romantic and

sensual experience of each place, tied to the ecological inforffiation Wright was trying to convey. c.

The .image.

A photograph or drawing of the

I

essence I

of each place at its height or as Wright had wanted it to De. d.

Management guidelines.

A description of the management

techniques needed to restore and to maintain the character of each place. 5.

A plan of the entire site at a scale of 1" = 50 I., with contours at la' intervals.

2


Russel f<,Tright (1904-1976) and the Quadruple Oak. Four great trunks, sprouted from the stun~ of a red oak cut for timber decades ago, now embrace a stone seat found along the Zigzag Trail.

3


INTRODUCTION

"Each particular place is the continuously evolving expression of a highly complex set of forces -inanimate and living -- which became integrated into an organic whole.

Man is one of those forces,

and probably the most influential; his interventions can be creative and lastingly successful if the changes he introduces are compatible with the intrinsic attributes of the natural system he tries to shape.

The reason we are now desecrating

nature is not because we use it to our ends, but because we commonly manipulate it without respect .

.

for the splrlt of the place.

, I

. I

--

Rene DubolS

Rene Dubois, a great admirer of Manitoga, might well have been describing Wright's accomplishments at Manitoga.

Over forty

year's ago, internationally-known industrial designer Russel Wright

~-

who revolutionized the design and public taste for

common objects used by millions of people

acquired an

abandoned quarry and surrounding hillside in the Lower Hudson River Valley and began slowly restoring this land to a place of extraordinary beauty.

Today, the same 80 acres, now a

preserve of The Nature Conservancy, are called Manitoga from the local Algonquin Indian, meaning "place of the great spirit".

Four miles of paths lead visitors through an

experience of nature where Wright's art has captured and displayed the sp6cial features of this landscape.

Stre~Q足

crossed woodlands and steep ravines harbor many species of wildflowers, a profusion of ferns, and almost all the tree, understory, and shrub species of the region, which are displayed in diverse habitats.

Before it was opened to the

public, Manitoga was the country home of Russel Wright and his family.

Wright designed and built a house and studio


into one side of the quarry.

A stream was diverted to fill

the abandoned quarry so that his house would overlook a tumbling waterfall and the still quarry pond, with a distant view to the river in the Hudson Valley below.

Constructed of

a combination of natural and man-made materials, the buildings blend into the landscape of rock and forest.

The house and

its immediate landscape was called "Dragon Rock", which Wright described as "a designer's experiment, custom fit to the land, to my family, to me, and to our way of living.,,2

The Dragon

Rock Core at Manitoga is a unique example of a native American garden on a grand scale.

It is philosophically in the

tradition of Frederick Law Olmstead and particularly Jens Jensen:

great American landscape architects who looked to

their own regional landscapes for inspiration, rather than to European models.

It is a consumate work of art that

reveals to the visitor the natural history and beauty of the indigenous landscape. Manitoga offers a sensual and romantic exploration of the native landscape that facilitates an understanding and love of the natural world that is ecological in its form as well as its message.

Each path has a story line that is both

experiential and ecologically informative.

And it accomplishes

this in ways that are found in no other nature center, p~ovid~ng

unique educational opportunities.

Wright's theatrical

vision sets the tone and quality of the exhibits and the dr~atic Visu~l

presentation of the landscape becomes the

message, not a series of billboards or explanatory signs. Manitoga is also a landscape that has been managed purposefully and innovatively for over twenty-five years.

It is a living

laboratory demonstrating sophisticated expertise on the management of natural systems.

Wright undertook a remarkable

stewardship that included the repair and reclamation of a highly disturbed landscape, accelerating healing and creating a place where we see ourselves in nature and relate to it with empathy and recognition.

Wright did not seek to control or

constrain the elements of the landscape, but left room for

5


variation, flexibility, and enrichment.

He acknowledged the

dynamic qualities of all life and observed the landscape carefully and continuously, interacting selectively and appropriately.

The degree of intervention ranges from very

intense to simply allowing natural succession to run its course, spanning a broad spectrum of man's use of the landscape and the varied methods and techniques of landscape management. conventional landscape maintenance techniques and designs which rely on expensive technology and the intensive use of water, herbi.cides, pesticides, fertilizer, and exotic hybrid species are being increasingly questioned, and the movement away from 'grounds maintenance' toward a more ecologically sound landscape management is now well underway.

The first

professionals to study and teach this discipline came out of forestry.

Their training in vegetation dynamics was later

applied to sites beyond the forest and woodlot.

It wasn't

until the 1970s, however, that these ideas began to be generally applied to gardens and created landscapes.

Wright, working in

the 1940s and 1950s, was pioneering at Manitoga new concepts and techniques of landscape management that professionals and laymen alike have come to study and advocate today.

Although

Wright developed his techniques of vegetation management through personal instinct and insight, Manitoga today gives us the opportunity to appreciate and develop these techniques. Ironically, Manitoga, born out of an impulse to make something beautiful and a desire to have the public share a spiritual vision, was created by techniques and values which we now consider to be urgently needed, environmentally sound, and socially responsible. "My desire is to add to American culture an intimacy with nature," -- Russel wright]

1

Rene Dubois, A God Within

2

Russel Wright, quoted in lIDraft Fundraising Proposal: Manitoga", The Nature Conservancy, 1978.

]

Ope cit. in note 2.

6


BRIEF BIOGRAPHY OF WRIGHT AND THE INFLUENCES THAT SHAPED MANITOGA

Born in 1904 in Lebanon, Ohio, Russel Wright had a childhood ambition to be a farmer. cousin's

fa1~

He spent several summers at his

in Springfield, Ohio that were very important

to his shaping of Dragon Rock.

In a tape he prepared for

Harley Beers, Wright noted that when he looked at his own quarry at Dragon Rock, he would remember the granite cliffs in the Ohio barnyard:

"Then there was the spring, which came

out of a granite cliff and ran through troughs to a springhouse. Nearby there was a beautiful woods where there was said to Also, for a boy in Lebanon,

be a famous Indian battle .

Ohio, there were the fields and pastures in back of our house that had originally been owned by my grandfather.

These

fields had a brook on them, around which were trees.

I did

a great deal of hunting in these woods with the other boys to pick wildflowers and to track down wild animals."l mother also encouraged him to draw and paint. hours drawing landscapes.

His

Wright spent

At the age of sixteen, before

starting college, he spent a year in New York City taking courses in painting and sculpture.

The year in New York was

pivotal for Wright, launching him far beyond the rural world of Lebanon.

He also saw and experienced the ocean for the

first time and roamed the rolling pastures and beautiful beaches of Martha's Vineyard.

He spent a weekend at

Croton-on-the-Hudson and for the first time "saw and fell in love with the Hudson River". 2 In 1922, Wright entered princeton University, a time he found both exciting and disturbing. conflict.

He experienced great social

His year in New York had changed him and made i t

difficult for him to relate to many of his classmates.

He

had had a taste of city life, especially in the bohsnian and Communist circles of New York.

He found undergraduate life

7 \.


unbearably confining.

Fortunately, he discovered the theater,

where his set designs were so successful that he became the first freshman member of the prestigious Triangle Club. Through his friendship with Thornton Wilder, he met Robert Edmund ,Jones, Lee Simonson, and Norman Bel Geddes, and established connections with the New York theater.

While

working in summer stock, he met another designer, Mary Einstein, who became his wife and co-designer and public-relations director, guiding his career through their twenty-five years of married life. Mary shifted Wright's interest from theater to the production of decorative objects, which led to his experimenting with spun-aluminum cookware, flatware, and textiles.

In 1932, he

"ras invited to design an aluminum breakfast alcove for the Philadelphia Art Museum's exhibition, Design for the Machine. Wright went on to become one of the foremost pioneers of industrial design, a generation that included Bel Geddes, Henry Dreyfuss, and Raymond Loewy.

His most important designs

included a full line of modern home

furnishi~gs

for Conant Ball,

constructed of solid maple in simple blocky forms.

His

American Modern dinnerware introduced color to the dining table and became the most popular dinnerware ever sold.

During his

design career, Wright noted his desire to escape from geometric form and his eventual discovery of "amorphic form", which paralleled his later rediscovery of natural

for~m

at

Manitoga. In 1939, he began looking for a country place.

After many

weekends of searching, he bought the Garrison property in 1942.

It was here that Wright discovered a new, and to him

the most fascinating, medium:

landscape design.

everything else he did, he began slowly. not reasoned out but gradually evolved."

Like

"My discovery was 3

He built a temporary bungalow on the site, but found it was so closely surrounded by young woodlands that it felt claustrophobic.

He began to explore the possibilities of

a view by walking everywhere and climbing rocks and trees.

tl


He grew to know and love his land, finding on it great sculptural boulders, cliffs, quarries, several streams, small ravines, banks of ferns, and the occasional giant tree.

Slowly, Wright

began to thin the landscape in order to reveal its hidden features, sometimes removing just a tree or two, or simply a limb.

He built his home against the south facing wall of the

quarry and, until his death in 1976, .used the language of the forest to transform the disturbed land into a garden of woodland paths with a rich variety of beautiful places. In 1952, Russel Wright visited Frank Lloyd Wright, "one of the few American designers for whom Russel Wright admitted having , , ,,4 Later, Russel sent Wrlght . an admlratlon. the plans for h'lS house and received Wright's comments and approval.

There are

a number of interesting parallels between the work and characters of these two seminal American designers, who by accident bore the same last name.

Similarities between the design ideas

of these two men are apparent in the house at Dragon Rock and in Frank Lloyd Wright's Falling Water, as well as Taliesin East and Taliesin West.

All are responses to a distinct regional

landscape and a particular individual place.

Both men's work

express the interweaving of building and site, the innovative use of native materials, and the orchestration of building and landscape to create a dramatic, sensual experience of the place.

In character, both Wrights were very much American

prototypes:

essentially romantic, populist, deeply patriotic,

and stubbornly independent. Manitoga is a political statement about the value of our native landscape and our American way of life.

"The American

home, I believe, is our greatest contribution to the culture of our times. o~

But we have now to solve this great. problem

giving our homes and lives we lead in them the individuality

that American democratic beginnings promised."S From 1956 to 1958, Russel worked and traveled in the Far East. Again like Frank Lloyd Wright, he was deeply influenced by oriental art and was attracted to the philosophy it expressed.

9


Much of Russel's work at Manitoga illustrates the design influence of the Japanese house and garden.

One can clearly

see in the Dragon Rock Core at Manitoga (the house, studio, and surrounding landscape, including the quarry and its paths) a garden whose organization is remarkably similar to the prototypical "Japanese Tour Garden", of which the Katsura Palace is a well known example.

This was one of the few

types of Japanese gardens designed to be walked in by the visitor, rather than just to be looked at.

"No matter how

many buildings it contained, it was always arranged around its path, and this path was always arranged around a lake or pond."

6

Actually, Wright's home and immediate landscape

were already designed before he went to Japan.

Although

Dragon Rock seems remarkably Japanese in design and feeling, this similarity was coincidental and not the result of conscious imitation, but rather of Wright's feeling for the natural landscape and his exploration of organic design.

In fact, at

the time, Russel knew little of Japanese gardens and architecture and, until his trip to the Orient, was mainly interested in American art and traditions. Nevertheless, Manitoga also reflects an Oriental attitude toward nature.

One of the best descriptions of this attitude,

and the differences between it and the usual Western approaches, can be found in Teijo Ito's book, The Japanese Garden: are only two attitudes towards nature. accepts it â&#x20AC;˘

One confronts it or

. The Western garden represents ambition

attained, nature subdued. humanist ideal:

"There

It is an illustration of the

'Man is the Measure of All Things'.

The

Eastern garden and its assumptions are quite different. finally and firmly becomes a part of nature itself.

Man

There

is no assumption that there is something better than nature. ,.

7

At Manitoga, where the house and studio blend into the quarry cliff and the "usual crude mistake of cutting a panoramic vista ,,8 is never made, one can clearly see a

de~onstration

idea that man is finally and firmly part of nature.

of this It is

interesting and ironic to note that the western attitude

10


toward landscape architecture can be found frequently along the Hudson Valley, of which the neighboring garden of Boscobel is such an excellent example.

Here the big house on the hill,

the great lawns and formal vistas sweeping down to the Hudson, testify that man is supreme, a

'lord of creation', "seeing in

nature but the rawest of materials to do with as he will.,,9 Wright began building his house and working on his property in the 1950s.

He called his horne Dragon Rock "because we built

the house on the back of a rock formation that coils around the quarry and resembles, as my daughter Anne said, a dragon drinking water from the pool. ,,10

As his interest in the natural world

grew, his industrial design career declined.

It was as if

with the death of his wife Mary in 1952, he needed a new impetus which could rekindle his creative imagination.

From the late

1950s on, more and more of his energy was transferred to Manitoga and to his work in the public parks of Washington, D.C. and New York state.

In 1965, he left New York city and

carne to live permanently at Manitoga.

In 1968, he devised a

unique recreation program to revitalize and give new purpose to the green necklace of parks that encircle our capital.

The

program was designed to involve the children of Washington's inner city neighborhoods in a creative participation in the natural world. Throughout his career, Wright's social conscience and deep commitment to public education and public welfare have been an important thread.

Although it may not seem to be an

obvious connection, his early concern with good design for the middle classes is actually a far larger issue and a commitment that was reinterpreted as his interests turned to the natural world.

"Advertisements for the dinnerware stressed

that American Modern was designed to complement the 'unique informality of

A~erican

life'.

This is a theme to which Wright

would return repeatedly during the rest of his career.

His

ideas on the subject, formed in the 1930s, are most completely articulated in the book he and Mary authored in 1951, The Guide

II


to Easier Living.

According to the Wrights, traditional ideas

of 'gracious living' are a sham.

Comfort, ease, and

spontaneity are frequently sacrificed to outmoded dreams of a life with numerous servants.

Modern American homes must

be designed to better express ideas of democracy and individualism. Mo d ern1' t y '1S no t t s yl e, b u t a way of 11'fe."11 Wright was deeply concerned that, in our relationship to the natural environment, Americans had inherited a "cultural habit of neglect, distaste, fear, and destruction of nature,"12 which he felt was not true of the native American Indians or the European countries where there was a respect and enjoyment of nature.

Wright saw in the American rejection of nature the

same problem he had experienced in trying to help

&~ericans

move from a rigid and formal Victorian lifestyle, with cumbersome and inappropriate household furnishings, to a modern lifestyle where beautiful and well designed furnishings had a value in their ability to create and to express more harmonious and spontaneous ways of living.

Although he never

fully expressed the connection in his writings, it is clear from the direction of his work that Wright believed that the American lifestyle originated in the puritanical rejection of the enjoyment of things of the flesh.

To alleviate this

problem, he '..zanted to help Americans enjoy the sensual and spiritual pleasures of the natural world -- space, form, color, texture, scent, and movement.

"Manitoga's concept

differs from the majority of nature centers in .that our primary goal .is to help people experience the wonder of nature. We want them to feel in a new and intensely personal way the meaning of our eternal natural legacy. "13 Wright realized that conservation and respect for the living landscape would never come about unless people cared about nature. In a democratic society, we cannot mandate what is needed without consensus, so Wright felt that it was critical to persuade the American public that there are values for them in the natural world. by the

u.s.

"Public parks will never be understood

taxpayer until he finds a personal value in them.

12


The complicated efforts of legislators, planners, and philanthropists to create open spaces overlook the basic first step: a consumer desire for such open spaces.

To create

Greater personal

valuations for them must" be found and demonstrated to the public. ,,14

For Wright, this was the purpose of Manitoga and

is why he devoted the last years of his life to making it a public institution.

POSTSCRIPT

In late 1974, Wright approached The Nature Conservancy with a proposal to donate Manitoga as a "model for the protection and proper use of a natural area, and (to) demonstrate that human activities can be carried out in harmony with natural processes."

15

In 1975, after extensive discussions, a formal agreement transferred the property to The Nature Conservancy and established a trust for its support.

Although Wright had spent a great

deal of time developing the objectives of an operating plan for Manitoga, his death in 1976 coupled with initial financial problems made the transition from a private estate to a public institution particularly difficult.

In early 1981, the Manitoga

Board and The Nature Conservancy hired Susan Eirich Dehne as its new Director, who has initiated a master plan which would integrate Wright's objectives and design intent at Manitoga with a landscape management program, educational and interpretive programs, and fiscal plans that could feasibly begin to be implemented and developed.

This Design and Management Guide

has been prepared to serve as an integral part of the master plan which is presently being developed.

13


1

Russel Wright, taped interview with Marley Thomas Beers, 1976.

2

Ope cit. in note 1.

3

Ope cit. in note 1.

4

William J. Hennessey, "Reintroducing Russel Wright", manuscript, 1982.

5

Russel Wright, "Garrison Slide Lecture", manuscript, 1961.

6

Teiji Ito and Takeji Iwamiya, The Japanese Garden (Tokyo: Zokeisha publications, Ltd., 1978), p. 38.

7

Ope cit. in note 6.

8

Russel Wright, "A Garden of Woodland Paths", manuscript.

9

Ope cit. in note 6.

10

Ope c.it. in note 8.

11

Ope cit. in note 4.

12

Russel Wright, "Conservation", manuscript, 1969.

13

Russel Wright, quoted in "Draft Fundraising Proposal: Manitoga", The Nature Conservancy, 1978.

14

Ope cit. in note 12.

15

Russel Wright, "Dragon Rock: Hudson Valley Conservancy Center Use Plan", manuscript, 1974.

1~


DESCRIPTION OF THE GARRISON SITE, ITS LOCATION, AND INITIAL CHARACTER

Manitoga is located in the Hudson Highlands of New York state between Bear Mountain and storm King Mountain where the Hudson River Valley is enclosed by high hills. From the time of the glaciers until the European settlers came, a vast oak-chestnut-hemlock forest, extending hundreds of miles from the eastern foothills of the Appalachians to the flat Atlantic coastal region, covered the site.

In the

1800s, the high value of these hardwoods brought loggers who cleared the land of the hundred-and-fifty foot tall black, red, and chest.nut oaks, the then-abundant American chestnut, and the hemlock that grew in the cooler ravines and on the north-facing slopes. shipment to the mills.

The logs were hauled to the river for An old logging trail deeply incised

into the earth and just wide enough for a team of horses still crosses the site, giving evidence of this history.

After the

woodcutters had gone, the land itself was cleared and Manitoga became the site of several quarries where great blocks of granite were cut out of the earth and shipped down the Hudson River to help build New York city, then rapidly growing 50 miles to the south. The. property that Wright bought in 1942 was 69 acres on the side of a mountain overlooking the Hudson. old quarries and a stream.

On it were three

When Wright first came to Manitoga,

the abandoned quarries were covered with brambles and vines, and the surrounding forest was in the early stages of regeneration.

Wright described the landscape as a

"non-descript piece of woods on the side of a hill where similar woods stretched for 15 miles.

This is called second

growth because it is the remains of firewood operations of eighty years ago, and it has been considered useless land

15


because of the lack of soil and of any level spaces which could be used for farming.

It is a typical uninhabited,

uninviting, dry, and impenetrable woods, with no views or vistas."l Wright discovered the potential of the land gradually.

Living

in the cottage below the quarry, he began to explore the possibilities of the site by walking everywhere and climbing the rocks and trees, finding huge sculptural boulders, rocky cliffs, small ravines, banks of ferns, and the occasional giant tree.

Slowly, Wright began to thin the landscape to

reveal its hidden features, sometimes removing just a tree or two, or simply a limb.

In the summer of 1959, he completed

the house he was building against the south-facing wall of the qua.rry and, until his death in 1976, he used the language of the forest to

tra~sform

the disturbed land into a powerful

and fascinating landscape, a landscape very much designed and manipulated, yet appearing so much a part of the surrounding fabric that friends would ask "How did you ever find such an unusually beautiful site?"

1

Russel Wright, "A Garden of Woodland Paths", manuscript.

16


NATURAL INVENTORY AND EARLY CULTURAL HISTORY

1â&#x20AC;˘

PHYSIOGRAPHY

Manitoga is a property of approximately 80 acres on the east side of the Hudson River Valley.

The site lies on the slopes

of South Mountain overlooking the river.

From the parking lot

entrance off Route 90 the land rises from

Âą 150'

to over

700' at the southeast corner, just above Lost Pond, a total relief of over 550'. The site is almost entirely sloping land, much of it very steep and mostly facing northwest.

There are several prominent

breaks in the slope where terraces and even cliffs occur. These are relatively rare on this otherwise ver.y steep property, and most of these have been used as landscape features in the design of the site.

The steepness of the slopes and the fact

that it rises over 500' from top to bottom make a very dramatic landscape for the trails system, providing changes in views and a strong sense of direction. Several steep ridges play an important role in the trail design. A steep climb from Mary's Meadow to the Laurel Field begins each walk for the hiker from the New Core.

A second steep

ridge east of Margaret's waterfall to the Great Cliff on the White Pine Trail commands an extraordinary view of the stream gorge below.

Another winds up along the northern boundary and

a final steep drop as the hiker climbs down from Lost Pond. There are three distinguishable physiographic areas within the site: a.

The lower slope is really a transitional area at the toe of the hill where the Hudson Valley floor ends and the mountain begins.

The house itself can be just included

in the area, with both public and private parking lots, Mary's Meadow, and the approach drives to the house and the public entrance.

The stream begins to spread out in

a small delta at the very bottom of this area.

17


"

---- -----

;:::---

- . - - - - '''::-'''-..:z-

TOPOGRAPHY

o (j

'6


19


/'

_0

0

:::--:::1'

a

20


b.

Immediately above is the middle slope.

The land here is

mostly sloping fairly steeply but is broken by two distinctly flatter terraces and bisected by a stream valley.

The

land between the stream and the north boundary faces southwest.

This area is the only significant change of

aspect on a generally northwest-facing property. c.

Finally, the upper slope is a fairly uniform, very steep area all facing northwest, the bottom of which cuts across the site on a diagonal and forms an obvious break with the middle slope.

Two flatter areas occur on this slope,

one at Lost Pond at the top of the site and one at the lower end of the slope approximately in the middle of the property.

Several small terraces and cliffs, where the

bedrock outcrops, break up the slope but do not really show on the large-scale map. The stream valley is a major feature of the site and links all three major areas.

From the small delta area in the lower

slope already mentioned it rises through the Quarry Pond (an artificial diversion) through the middle slope area.

At the

foot of the upper slope the main stream turns to the east, running along the edge of the break in the slope.

A tributary

joins it at this point at right angles and goes directly up the upper slope and off the site up to Curry Pond.

21


2.

CLIMATE

The climate of New York State is broadly representative of the humid continental type which prevails in the northeastern United States.

Two major air masses provide the dominant

continental characteristic of the climate.

The first brings

cold, dry air from the northern interior of the continent. The second is warm, humid air carried up from the Gulf of Mexico area on prevailing winds from the south and southwest.

A

third influence is maritime, a great air mass flowing inland from the north Atlantic Ocean, which produces cool, cloudy, and damp weather conditions.

Lengthy periods of either

abnormally cold or warm weather are common, due to Arctic air masses brought southward under high barometric pressure from central Canada and the Hudson Bay or from stagnant high pressure systems moving off the Atlantic followed by persistent air flow from the south.

A frost-free growing season of from

150 to 180 days in duration prevails in the Hudson Valley below Albany. Moisture for precipitation is transported primarily from the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean.

Average annual

precipitation is 47 inches and is distributed fairly evenly throughout the year.

Minimum precipitation occurs in the

winter season. The climate is also marked by abundant snowfall, averaging around 40 to 50 inches in the Hudson River Valley below Albany. The prevailing wind is generally from the west in New York State. Occasionally well developed storm systems moving across the continent or along the Atlantic Coast are accompanied by very strong winds which cause considerable property damage. Hurricanes at Manitoga have cleared areas of forest on the White Pine Trail and on the Autumn Walk. The two nearest stations to Manitoga are in Carmel, Putnam County, New York, which would approximate the higher elevation conditions at Manitoga, and in West Point, Orange County, New York, just across the river where conditions are more similar


/'

.

j

/s

I

_.---- ----

....

ASPECT

a [j


to the low-lying areas of Manitoga.

The yearly and monthly

norms of temperature and precipitation for each station are given below. Station: West point, Index #9292

carmel, Index #1207 Month

Temperature

precipitation

Temperature

precipitation

Jan.

26.4

3.34

28.2

3.34

Feb.

27.0

2.75

29.3

2.96

March

35.1

3.76

37.5

4.16

April

47.2

3.70

49.6

4.08

May

57.8

4.35

60.6

4.20

June

66.6

3.90

69.6

3.85

July

71.7

4.71

74.9

4.40

Aug.

70.0

4.61

73.0

4.08

Sept.

62.8

4.24

65.5

4.18

Oct.

52.8

3.63

54.9

3.56

Nov.

41.4

4.12

43.2

4.10

Dec.

29.4

3.59

31.3

3.80

Annual:

49.0

46.70

51.5

46.71

The local and microclimatic conditions at Manitoga are determined largely by vegetative cover and proximity to water as well as the orientation and steepness of the slope.

The most prominent

feature of the site is that it is all steeply sloping. fact, it is a slice of the side of a mountain.

In

In addition,

the slopes predominently face northwest to north over the majority of the site.

For this reason, these woods are

moister and cooler compared to the forests in other parts of the region of other aspects.

This is borne out by the large

amount of hemlock in the woods.

Similarly, on the steeper

slopes snowcover will persist longer than other areas in the winter. A small part of the site to the north of the main stream has south- and southwest-facing slopes which support a more ,deciduous vegetation featured along the Autumn Walk, which is also called the Sunset Walk.

24


The predominant rock type at Manitoga is a medium grained grey granite containing a mixture of violet red and dull red garnets.

Also associated are white and grey feldspars and

grey quartz.

This rock association is called Canada Hill

Granite Phase. The soils which overlie this granite bedrock are all formed in glacial till and rock coop and occur as a complex pattern of soil and outcrop.

The Hollis Rock outcrop soil type (HSE)

extends over most of the site.

It is a shallow, somewhat

excessively drained and moderately coarse-textured and strongly acid soil on moderate to very steep slopes.

The seasonal high

water table is many feet belOW the surface and the available water capacity is very low.

Rock outcroppings are typically

exposed near the shoulder and upper backslope of hillsides and are usually 3-5 feet in height and 20 to 100 feet in length. At the bottom of the hillside in the lower western portion of the site is Charlton Very Rocky soil which ranges from nearly level to very steep and is also interspersed with outcrops of bedrock and bedrock is often within 1-4 feet of the surface. The soil is deep, well drained, and medium and moderately coarse-textured f with a moderate available water capacity. At the top ot the ridge the Hollis Rock Outcrop

~

Charlton

soil forms a complex pattern of deep to shallow soils interspersed with rock outcroppings which are somewhat smaller.

Though

the erosion potential of these soils is generally described as low to moderate, all will erode severely when disturbed on steep slopes. all categories.

Use restrictions are severe in nearly


3.

GEOLOGY AND SOILS

Manitoga is situated in the area known as the Hudson Highlands. The Highlands form part of the New England upland called the Reading Prong, a projection which extends across the Hudson River into northcentral New Jersey, terminating at Reading, pennsylvania.

These hills are a mixture of metamorphic and

igneous rocks of precambrian origin, 800 to 1.2 billion years old.

These mountains were once part of an ancient mountain

system that was leveled by erosion .5 billion years ago.

As

the hills were leveled the root rocks sank, forming a trough known as a geosyncline.

Over millions of years this trough

filled with sediments, as its bottom continued sinking.

The

thrusting forces acting inward from the sides of the geosyncline folded and broke the rock lines.

Molten material from the

depths (magma) surged up to form volcanoes.

As this mountain

building activity subsided erosion became dominant. The erosional period reached a climax about 2 million years ago (the pleistocene epic) due to the advancing glaciers which spread as far south as northern New Jersey, southern Ohio, and Missouri.

The last of four known stages of glaciation

occurred about 18 thousand years ago.

The ice covered the

Highlands to a depth of several thousand feet.

Ice funneling

through the Hudson Gorge speeded up and the increased pressure eroded the bottom and sides severely.

At Storm King Mountain

the bedrock bottom was eroded to a depth of one thousand feet below sea level.

The Hudson River through the Highlands region

(storm King and Break Neck Ridge to the north, Thunderbird Mountain and Anthony's Nose at the south end) is a true fiord, the river valley deepened below sea level by glacial action and then filled by seas as the ice melted. The Hudson Highlands' original sedimentary rock as metamorphosed during their early origin.

Schists with biotite mica and

gneisses with biotite and hornblend are the oldest in the area (1,150 million years old).

Pochuck diorite and igneous rock

with dioritic composition are often found.


----.

SOILS

a (j

~

27


4.

SURFACE HYDROLOGY

Manitoga's landscape is dominated by two streams.

The main

stream begins at Gilbert Pond and runs west down the slope, emptying into the main quarry pool.

Approximately 300 yards

of the stream upstream from the quarry were diverted by Russel Wright to bring the stream into the quarry pool down a cascading waterfall constructed on the southwest-facing quarry wall. After the pool, the stream is slowed by two dams. was built by Wright to contain the quarry pool.

The first The second is

a 19th century catch dam which appears on an area map from 1890 and is located behind the guide house, after which the stream divides east of the property and enters the Hudson River in an area of marsh.

The second stream runs from Curry

Pond and joins the main stream at Margaret's Waterfall.

Both

streams are traversed several times by the trails and the crossings occur as special features in the landscape. There are also several intermittent streams on the property. Three run east to join the main stream.

Another intermittent

stream along the southern boundary of the property was first seen flowing after this past January's record rains. There are also several poorly drained wet depressions which are called out in the landscape by wetland vegetation in the upland forest.


SURFACE HYDROLOGY

G.


5.

VEGETATION The forests of Manitoga were once part of the uninterrupted oak-chestnut-hemlock forest that Henry Hudson saw on both shores when he first explored the Hudson River in 1607.

Since

that time the vegetation has been shaped by the two most important past land uses at Manitoga:

logging and quarrying.

Timber cutting cleared large expanses of land while the impact of quarrying was both more severe and localized.

The second

growth forest on the hillsides is mid-way between a formerly cut-over tract and a natural forest.

The size of the larger

trees suggests there has been uninterrupted growth for perhaps 80 years. The largest

The upland forests are primarily mixed oaks and hemlock. ~~arry

area now forms the focal point of the Dragon

Rock landscape and its vegetation is discussed in greater detail in the Aesthetic Inventory (Section V) and in the Manitoga Design and Management Guide.

The highest elevation

quarry is now called Lost Pond and is enclosed by second growth forest and bordered by a small herbaceous wet meadow.

The

small quarry in the New Core does not stand water and is blanketed in jewelweed. The most conspicuous differences in the site are between forested and unforested areas and between wet and dry habitats. The map of vegetation communities was derived from aerial photography as well as from on-site inspection. UPLAND HABITATS Mixed grass and forb meadow with occasional ferns and moss occurs in the large clearings in the forest along the entry drive, on Pastoral Hill, and in Mary路s Meadow.

This herbaceous landscape

is periodically cut during the season to accommodate events. Within this matrix are several large successional woody islands which form thickets and large multi-layered, multi-species mounds and thickets developed over heaping vines.

Grey birch,

red cedar, flowering dogwood, sassafras, shrub dogwoods, and viburnums predominate. other recently disturbed areas at the entry to Dragon Rock, along the western property boundary and adjacent to construction


VEGETATION


in the New Core, support young upland woodland vegetation of densely spaced cherry, red maple, black locust, and sassafras with limited shrub and groundlayer development. The upland forest is multi-layered, multi-aged, and multi-specied. The lower and often shallower slopes are predominantly oak of mixed species, including red, black, and white with occasional hickories and red and sugar maples.

These appear to have been

the most recently logged on the site. canopy is generally mixed hemlock/oak.

In the mid-slope the In this area there are

also laurel fields with a sparse canopy over a well developed shrub layer of mountain laurel, black huckleberry, and lowbush blueberry, the largest of which was managed by Wright to reduce canopy development.

The hemlock-dominated forest occurs on the

steeper, higher slopes and was probably released from logging somewhat earlier.

Hemlock is continuing to increase in abundance

in these areas. WETLAND HABITATS

Fringing one edge of Lost Pond is a small wet meadow of sedges and rUShes, as evidence of the quarrying long ago. A young lowland woodland of red maple, ash, yellow birch, and sycamore occurs in disturbed wetland areas in the New Core and at the swamp at the end of the Autumn Path. A mature lmvland woodland of \olhite oak, red maple, and ash predominates along stream corridors and in wet depressions in the uplands.

Where the stream valley is broader and shallower,

beech is also present.

In these woodlands are several fern

meadows, which occur both naturally and as managed by Wright, limiting woody growth to favor extensive fern development.

32


6.

EARLY CULTURAL HISTORY The earliest evidence of man walking the woods at Manitoga is a projectile point which was found in 1979 in Mary's Meadow and identified by Nick Schumatoff as belonging to the Lamoka phase, a late archaic (3-4,000 B.C.) woodland Indian culture. This artifact was made from flint and probably used as the spearhead of a javelin.

Little else is known about Indian

occupation of this area until the colonial period when settlers arrived in the Hudson Highlands in the late 1600s. At this time the Indians living in and around Manitoga were called the Nochpeens, one of the tribes making up the Wappinger Nation, a member of the Algonquin Confederacy.

Other tribes

living in the region were the Kitchawan, the Sintsing, the Manhattan, the Pachan, the Siwanoy, and the Weequaesueek. The Nochpeens were partially settled, engaging in an early form of agriculture growing small gardens of corn and beans. They also continued to hunt and gather, moving their villages every decade or so when the local resources were exhausted. They lived in round houses made of bark and twigs, building occasional long houses of logs at their more permanent sites. They were superb craftsmen with highly developed skills in pottery, weaving, and beadwork.

The Nochpeens of Putnam County

had their principal village in Canopus Hollow.

Some of the

trails still used today, which lead from the mountain ridge across Manitoga and down to the Hudson River, were originally Indian trails created by the Nochpeens or earlier Indian cultures. Colonial settlers made use of the existing Indian trails and .also built a number of roads.

Several sophisticated structures

for use in building these oldest roads were found along the old logging trail at Manitoga and this colonial road connects to the network of carriage trails which follow the ridge and link Castle Rock to Canada Hill. The land now known as Manitoga was part of a colonail land grant to Adolph Phillips.

The area stretched 20 miles along

the Hudson and encompassed three Indian villages.

The first


estate in the area was located in the field at the base of Sugar Loaf and belonged to Colonel Beverly Robinson who acquired the property by marrying into the Phillips family.

Robinson

was a British loyalist considered useful to the British for his knowledge of the Highlands which were strategically critical to controlling the Hudson River, except for the lower 30 miles. During the Revolutionary War, Robinson was involved in Benedict Arnold's treasonous attempt to surrender West Point, located just across the Hudson River from Manitoga.

After the colonial

victory, however, his lands and home were taken from him, and the piece of the Robinson tract on which Manitoga is found went to the Osborne and Fish families. Both before and after the Revolutionary War little use was made of the Manitoga land except for tiwber cutting.

It was

not suited for crop farming though a stone wall along the northern property boundary may indicate some use as pasturage. The population of Putnam County at this time was very sparse, and not until the railroad made it to Cold Spring in 1848 did it begin to grow.

Small settlements had developed earlier

at Garrison and Cold Spring Landings which were used as stopping points for the Hudson River sloops that carried supplies up and down the river.

In the hills behind the settlements the

tall stands of chestnut, oak, and hickory were slowly clear cut to provide firewood and lumber for shipbuilders in Peekskill and Newburgh.

These forests were also a source of charcoal

for the iron foundry in Cold Spring which started in the mid-1800s.

Several charcoal pits can be seen throughout the

property, notably along the Zigzag Trail and in Mary's Meadow. A check dam found on the main stream below the guide house was built at this time. In 1883 the Hudson Highland Land Company began a quarrying operation with a main quarry and three smaller starts (located by the Wright house, the guide house and the entrance driveway, and at Lost Pond) to obtain the good quality granite discovered there.

These quarries were operated by the King family, and

when the present St. Phillips Church in Garrison was built in


1862, it was made from granite quarried at Manitoga.

The same

stone was also used in the New York Public Library on 42nd Street and probably other tmportant buildings including much of 8th Avenue.

The st. Phillips Church records show that the

quarry was near enough the building site for horse and wagon transport to be used and the old quarry road is now the entry drive to Dragon Rock.

The quarry ceased operation in 1910 and

the land lay idle with gaping scars from the quarrying days and a young second growth forest clear cutting.

recov~ing

from the era of

From 1910 the property changed hands several

times until 69 acres were bought in 1942 by

~~ry

and Russel Wright.


THE PATHS OF MANITOGA


WRIGHT'S MAJOR DESIGN IDEAS:

Manitoga is a forest garden.

A FOREST GARDEN

On the ground, there are the

plants and materials of the forest, field, or mountainside, and there is not so much as a square foot of lawn.

There

are no geometrically arranged trees or shrubs, no exotic species brought from distant places, and no plants which have been clipped or trained into balls or bumps. that uses the materials of the place:

This is a garden

the plant communities

and habitats found on the land, the granite cliffs, the glacial boulders, and little streams, which are the bones and blood of this land.

Nor has Wright ignored the cultural history and

its effect on the land, for he acknowledged the logging road that was used by tllose who cut down this forest.

And he has

created pastoral meadows to remind us what the landscape becomes when the forest is taken away. This garden is about the forest and, in particular, a secondgrowth forest of the Hudson Highlands, growing on the thin rocky soils of a glaciated mountainside typical of many others in the region.

Wright's

achieva~ent

at Manitoga, however, is to

explain this forest, its structure and its processes, in a sensual and experiential way.

In choosing this approach, he

intuitively understood and used a basic tenet of modern biology:

that form has meaning.

Perhaps all artists must

subscribe to this idea and it is the area where art and science share a

fund&~ental

belief.

For science, fann is a

faithful reflection of process. Although Wright was not a scientist, he was a keen observer of form and was able to recognize a number of different significant patterns on his Garrison property and understood what they revealed about the life of the forest.

For example,

he recognized the importance of cyclical changes in this temperate, deciduous forest, from small diurnal changes, such as the movement of 'sun flecks' on the forest floor to the

37


changes of the seasons over the year as the forest flowers, stores energy, sets seed, and is dormant.

Wright was also

aware of the changes in the structure of the forest over time. He noticed and celebrated the dense woodland groves of the young forest, the mixed species and mixed ages of its mature phase, and the ancient primeval forest, quiet and open, that showed how the land looked before the coming of the settlers. For Wright, the forces that shape the forest are best revealed in those places where there is an absence of forest -- from the small gaps caused by a fallen tree, to the larger holes such as that made by digging a quarry out of the face of the hillside.

He was fascinated with edges, the response of the

forest to a clearing, and with the structural changes in edges of different orientation, and the differences between the edge and the interior of the forest. At Manitoga, the path becomes a journey into the secrets of the forest.

Wright not only observed carefully, he also

understood the art of making a path revelatory, so that the design structure reflects and illuminates the actual processes of a landscape.

Each path has a major theme and often a

number of subthemes.

These themes are described by the

original names of the trails and in what Wright has said or written about them.

The "Sunset Walk", for exa.-nple, is about

the importance of orientation and how it affects the quality of light i.n the forest and on the landscape.

This path doubles

as the "Autumn Walk" which is about the vertical stratification of the forest.

Wright planted and managed this landscape so

that there are places with only canopy and understory and no shrub layer, or only canopy and herbaceous layers, or only shrub layers.

Being different from the surrounding forest of

many layers, these places where Wright has eliminated all but one

Or

two layers stand out and can be seen as a

'room' in the forest.

'hole' or

For the visitor, Wright has separated

the layers of the forest, then let the brilliant colors of autumn make each distinct layer visible.

Wright recognized

that our level of perception operates at many scales and is a


synthesis of aesthetic and intellectual experiences.

We see

and understand that the forest is made of many layers from the trees of the canopy to the flowers of the forest floor, and we also respond to the sensual delight of the orange berries of the bittersweet contrasted against an amphitheater of grey granite goulders bathed in the rich, warm aftel.-noon light of autumn.

On this path, where masses of witchhazel

and clumps of woodland aster were planted, Wright wanted to make visible the connection between the return of light to the forest floor when the trees lose their leaves in autumn and the return of flowers to the understory, shrub, and herbaceous layers.

It is an experience to be counterpointed against

the story of spring flowering told in the parking lot. As we have seen in this short description of the Autumn Path, along the trails are a number of events, places where Wright has manipulated the landscape to reveal an important idea about the forest.

The nature of these events is a demonstration

of the scope of Wright's understanding, not only of the way a forest works, but of the emotional and spatial qualities such events must convey to be effective within the forest.

Wright

felt strongly the closed, continuous quality of the forest landscape and realized that any kind of opening, no matter how small, created a noticeable change.

Along his footpaths,

he went out of his way to discover, enhance, or actually create a wide variety of gaps of different sizes and to give each of these places a distinct identity, a sense of spatial cohesion and thematic unity.

For this reason each place has

a name -- The Deer Pool, Lost Pond, The Laurel Field -- and this distinct identity is one of the aspects of Wright's designs that needs management to be maintained.

These holes

in the forest are used as the natural places of pause along the route, the special events of the garden where various pieces of the story of the life of the forest can be told.

THE DESIGN EXPERIENCE In its concept, design, and management, Manitoga is completely unique, uniting art, science, culture, and nature with an ecological aesthetic that is both human and spiritual.

At a

39


time when most Americans are profoundly alienated from nature and feel isolated from or sentimental toward the world they share with other living things, Manitoga can be seen as an important step in the evolution of our consciousness. Instead of imposing rigid forms and preconceived patterns on the place, Wright sought to make contact with the fluid structure and connecting patterns of the natural world.

wright

saw Manitoga as a living organism and respected its processes. He waited for the place to reveal itself to him and delighted in the complex order that unfolded over time.

Were he alive

today, Wright would undoubtedly recognize that Manitoga embodies a systems view of the world which is based on the fundamental wholeness and interrelatedness of all phenomena. Although the many elements of the garden are

f~~iliar

--

house, terraces, parking lot, trellis, and paths -- nothing is conventional.

Wright's integrating vision changed all the

familiar components, blending the built elements and the natural landscape together so that each was enriched, enhanced, and transformed by the other.

Just as the house is interwoven

with the site, the hillside is connected by views to its larger context of the Hudson River Valley, and the visitors themselves are involved in an intimate and unfolding relationship to the place. Most of us respond without reservation to the dramatic landscapes of the West. task:

But at Manitoga, Wright took on a more difficult

to help the average person lacking an appreciation of

the natural world, see and understand the far subtler and seemingly chaotic world of the Northeastern deciduous forest. In a subtle and prolific landscape such as ours nature is often confusing.

There are too many phenomena presented to

us simultaneously, and we come away from the experience of the landscape without a sense of its structure and meaning. Wright idealized the forest at Manitoga and intervened in the landscape to allow nature to be expressed in a louder voice and plainer terms so that the forms, relationships, and patterns of the place could be more easily comprehended.


For Wright, working on his garden was a process involving three activities.

First, close observation over a number of

years of a landscape he knew intimately and cared for deeply. Second, discovery and recognition of significant forms, patterns, and relationships.

And third, clarification and

dramatization of the element, so that its critical features stand out boldly enough to be perceived by the casual visitor. Like the Japanese gardener, Wright has "worked with nature, worked along its grain as it were.

There is pruning and

placing, but this results in the revealing of a line which nature itself created and then obscured in its own. plentitude."l The orchestration of movement was another important technique used by Wright to move the visitor from the more passive role of observer into a more active role of participant, drawing the visitor into a personal experience of the landscape. Manitoga is an interconnected whole where carefully crafted transitions carry the walker through the garden in a continuous movement which flows from place to place.

Like the Japanese

Tour Garden, "one new view emerges after another.

Remembered

details of scenes passed merge in unexpected combinations as one pauses and looks back . . â&#x20AC;˘ . One is a participant in an experience which opens and closes, which'speaks and is silent.,,2 Along each path, the landscape and its themes unfold sequentially.

There is an introduction, a dramatic build-up,

elaboration of a theme, and then a climax or goal:

the

building of tension and its dramatic release -- the whole design a musical composition.

Again like the Japanese Tour

Ga)::"den, "one is carried t,hrough this experience as though the course of footpaths had a musical rhythm. o~

From the shadows

the thicket, one suddenly emerges upon a spacious view

In this garden-drama one becomes the hero oneself because one 'creates' the garden by walking through it.

The blueprint is

there, and a most winning one it is too, but the experience is created by the viewer. ,,3

41


WRIGHT'S DESIGN OF PATHS In the manuscript of "A Garden of Woodland Paths", Wright described four simple, general rules for the design of paths:

"l.

Follow the natural contour of the land.

Look for a path

which the dogs, the deer, the cows, or the rabbits may have made and use it as the inspiration and base of the plan.

Unless you are trying to develop an allee, avoid

straight lines. 2.

Make paths which always curve.

If possible, make it unnecessary to retrace your steps on a path; that is, make it complete a contour.

3.

Plan it to show off the most interesting features of your land.

Have it pass through a bed of ferns; turn around a

knoll or a rock formation.

Find a good place for picnics.

Open a place where there is a vista.

These features should

be placed not on the side or the straight line of your path, but your paths should be arranged so that they are in a portion of a curve; that is, the interest of the path can be sustained if the walker finds a feature or change as he turns a curve in the path. 4.

Vistas should be cut very slowly, as I have stated above. Do not make the usual crude mistake of a panoramic vista by cutting down everything in front of the viewer.

It

should be framed with large trees, and have many trees between the viewer and the vista to create more depth and a subtle, natural effect." Several other observations are also noted in the manuscript (noted below as 5 - 8), which together form the groundwork for understanding how Wright designed his paths: 5. "A path is oppressive and dull and uninteresting if the growth on both sides forms a kind of solid wall.

Therefore,

I make openings or alcoves to relieve the walled in effect which can be desirable just preceding a panorama. 6.

Thinning can be done by cutting down (be sure to cut the roots) small sickly trees, but generally leaving those which are healthy and straight.

A complete thinning can


be done where you would like to show a small grove of a certain kind of tree or shrub, a cliff, or a group of boulders. 7.

If you find some interesting wildflower or groundcover, weed out all of the other growth which surrounds it, and encourage it to spread, or you can even bUy from wild nurseries plants of the same kind to increase the area of the wildflower.

8.

If there is an interesting feature at some distance from the path, make an offshoot off your main path into the feature. ,,4

1

Teiji Ito and Takeji Iwamiya, The Japanese Garden (Tokyo: Zokeisha Publications, Ltd., 1978).

2

Gp. cit. in note 1.

3

Op. cit. in note 1.

4

Russel Wright, "A Garden of Woodland Paths", manuscript.


DESIGN AND MANAGEMENT GUIDE

INTRODUCTION

At the heart of Manitoga is Russel Wright's house and studio, fitted into the edge of an old quarry, now transformed into a dramatic natural garden.

Below the house and quarry, a small

guide house and parking lot form a separate public entrance. Approximately four miles of trails and footpaths originating from both the house and public area loop out into the surrounding 79 acres of woodlands. In order to manage this landscape most effectively it is critical to understand and respect the gradation of manipulation. There are essentially two highly managed and active core areas, surrounded by a lightly managed area which includes the trails and the special events along

th~~.

These lightly managed

landscapes grade into an unmanaged wild landscape that frames and embraces the whole garden. If Manitoga is to survive, it must be carefully managed so that the fabric Wright created is not obscured, and so that future generations can experience this place as Wright had wanted it to be.

Our sense of obligation does not merely

mean seeing that Manitoga exists, but seeing Manitoga perform. If Manitoga is to live, it must go beyond restoration.

No

property can remain static and this property least of all. Russel Wright never stopped changing the place.

In his

continuous dialogue with the site, his design was inherently an evolutionary process, with both the site and his interventions continuously responding and adapting to each other. The design and management guide is designed to reflect both the

~rganization

of the site along a continuum, from core to

wild, as well as the inherently dynamic quality of this living landscape.

The guide is divided into four major sections:

The Dragon Rock Core, the New Core, Transitional Areas, and the Wild.

The overall design for each section is described

as well as the major features within it.

Management recommendations


are keyed to the major features and located on an adjacent map. The guide has been prepared as a looseleaf notebook to provide a format for continuous documentation of management for the site and to facilitate the development of an appropriate program for long-term management.

It is recommended that a

review of each of the major features be undertaken annually to determine the following year's management priorities. Unlike the conventional maintenance tasks of mowing, hedge trimming, and fertilizing, which must be done over and over again each season at predictable intervals, most of the management basis.

reco~~ended

for Manitoga can be done on an as-needed

Along the Spring Path, for example, many of the small

clearings established when the hemlocks were young, over twenty-five years ago, have begun to close.

nowever, upon

the removal of several trees and major limbs, it is unlikely that this task would have to be repeated for at least ten years.

Similarly, for each feature, the desired vegetation

is described as well as what plants should be weeded out. Many areas, however, are sufficiently stable that very limited weeding is required to maintain the design effect.

A once

yearly review, however, would ensure that no undesirable vegetation establishes a strong foothold and ultimately require more costly maintenance and restoration.

Similarly,

the invasion of typical disturbance species anywhere in the two cores or transttional areas should be quelled before it gets out of hand.

Such species would include Norway maple,

sycamore maple, ailanthus, Mexican billUboo, barberry, oriental bittersweet, and Japanese honeysuckle. Beyond controlling rampant growth, careful and selective weeding is especially important to maintain the crispness of design that characterizes Wright's garden.

In the natural landscape,

change often occurs slowly and in subtle transitions that are overlooked by the average walker.

Wright, however, sharpened

our perceptions in equally subtle ways.

A small bank of ferns,

for example, might callout a wet depression in an otherwise undifferentiated forest.

However, untended high weeds could

obscure such an effect as easily as a quick tug on the weeds


would reestablish it.

Perhaps more than anything else, this

guide is intended to acquaint the reader with the breadth of the design at Manitoga to further sharpen our perceptions of Wright's landscape.

The most important element in management

is continuous and careful observation of a landscape that becomes increasingly familiar.

Most people cannot believe

how little help Wright had to manage so extensive and dramatic a landscape.

However, Wright was an ardent observer of his

landscape and came to know its patterns and rhythms as well as the most simple means of intervening in the landscape. Wright also never stopped experimenting. or moved constantly.

Plants were added

Small alcoves on the Spring Path, for

example, were once filled with varied wildflowers that Wright was trying out.

There is today considerable room for enhancement

of landscapes at Manitoga, especially in the herbaceous layer. Some suggestions have been given in the guide, but the best ideas will probably come from those who experience this landscape on a daily basis.

The guide is intended to serve

as a touchstone with the original design as it evolved over time and as a springboard for its continued enrichment and management.


I.

DRAGON ROCK:

THE ORIGINAL CORE

INTRODUCTION

At the heart of the Garrison property is the original core, the area called Dragon Rock.

This area includes the house,

studio, and immediate surroundings -- the old entrance, parking court, quarry, and upper and lower Quarry Paths. Dragon Rock is the most carefully crafted and intensely orchestrated experience at Manitoga and the densest concentration of Wright's design ideas.

The house, studio,

and parking court occur at the nexus of the early paths and serve as the central starting point for visitors -- the place Wlere they were introduced to the language of the forest and the varied aspects of the natural and cultural history of the site. To those who know this remarkable house and garden, they remain an inexhaustible source of inspiration and the original core will always be an integral part of Manitoga.

Efforts to

increase actual ties and access to the property have proved most fruitful and the recent fund-raising event, designed in conjunction with Anne Wright, underscores the importance and potential of this site to public relations.

Further coordination

with Anne Wright is strongly encouraged to develop permanent connections to the programs at Manitoga.

A variety of potential

relationships should be explored including joint sponsorship of the house, restoration and related exhibits and special scheduled tours of the house and immediate landscape.

It is,

however, unlikely that it would ever be desirable to open the house and immediate landscape to regular visitorship.

Many

of the paths, such as the Upper Quarry Path, are relatively fragile and cannot withstand the trampling of

l~rge

numbers

of visitors and the furnishings and artifacts in the house would be too valuable and vulnerable.

This area will always


be both special and somewhat limited in access, functioning complementarily to the Visitors' Core which must be adequately rich and diverse to bring Wright's message to the larger public. MAJOR FEATURES OF DRAGON ROCK A.

Entry, parking, and trail nexus

B.

House, studio, and immediate landscape

C.

The quarry walls and lower quarry path

D.

The quarry pond and stream

E.

The upper quarry path 1.

The spring path

2.

The pastoral hill path


IA.

DRAGON ROCK:

ENTRY, PARKING, AND TRAIL NEXUS

DESCRIPTION

The house is approached by a narrow driveway that tunnels through the surrounding forest.

The place of arrival is the

first of many openings that are the major spaces of Wright's garden.

This opening serves as a parking court and entrance

to the house and quarry; it is the original starting point for many of the major paths.

The parking area is designed as a

'courtyard' enclosed by 'walls' of vegetation.

Wright

penetrated these enclosing 'walls' with 'window-like' openings which give a view up into the surrounding forest or through the trellis down into the quarry.

Near the center of the

graveled area, like a fountain or piece of sculpture in a European courtyard, there is an island of boulders and vegetation.

These boulders are glacial erratics, commonly

found on this glaciated site.

Huge round rocks are artfully

placed, with the largest in the center and smaller boulders at the sides.

Nestled among the rocks are patches of roadside

'weeds' -- Queen Anne's lace, daisies, chicory, goldenrod, and coltsfoot.

These largely European herbaceous plants speak

whimsically of the intervention of man in the landscape, as does the iron ring still implanted in the largest boulder -a relic from the days of quarrying. The parking court is a large gap in the forest, large enough to have edges which respond to different orientations. design theme is forest edge.

Its

The southwest-facing side is a

series of bands and appears almost in section.

When these

bands flower, each layer of the deciduous forest is called out in turn.

First the dogwoods, the understory layer, flowers

in spring; then the shrub layer of laurels; then the light canopy of oaks; and finally, all summer long, the wildflowers of the herbaceous layer bloom among the coltsfoot vine and woodbine at the edge of the gravel.


The window that breaks through the hemlock grove on the west-facing wall is the fern rivulet, carefully designed to penetrate the sealed forest edge.

Among a pile of granite

boulders, a cascade of hay-scented ferns descends the hillside, falling like a rivulet down a steep bank.

'l'he

break in the canopy allows a thin corridor of light to lead the eye back through the dark hemlocks to a small bright clearing where a shaft of light falls on some large dramatic boulders.

At the far side of the parking court adjacent to

the studio a graveled path connection leads to the entrances of several major trails.


A SECTION THROUGH THE PARKING COURT

Bands of Mountain Laurel dogwood and tulip poplars seal the south-facing edge. Colt's foot and woodbine creep out onto the gravel 1 where ever they are not trampled back. On the north-facing side a group of large boulders whIch hfde the house are seen beneath a grove of dark hemlocks. l

l

51


., ' .

.........

....... -.,"

'.

,.PLAN OF :PARKING MEA.

52


~

The Boul.der Island in the Parking Court and view of the trellis connecting the studio and the house.


The Fern Rivulet, viewed from the Parking- Court.

54


IA.

DRAGON ROCK:

ENTRY, PARKING, AND TRAIL NEXUS

1• 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

ENTRY DRIVE PARKING COURT BOULDER ISLAND SOUTH-FACING EDGE FERN RIVULET TRAIL NEXUS

55


IA.

DRAGON ROCK:

ENTRY I

PARKING I

AND TRAIL NEXUS

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1â&#x20AC;˘

ENTRY DRIVE

The Nature Conservancy does not own the property along the edges of the entry drive; however, disturbance species here constitute a major problem.

Norway maple, sycamore maple, and

ailanthus have colonized all the surrounding woodlands and are now mature enough to be a seed source which continues their proliferation within Manitoga's boundaries.

Agreements should

be developed with adjacent landowners to allow for the removal of these invasive species and to encourage the

re-establisTh~ent

of native species. 2.

PARKING COURT

The parking court should be raked or regraveled whenever excessive wear, holes, ruts, or bare spots develop. frequency will be dependent upon erosion and use.

The The

present method of having Joe Chapman supervise the retopping has been very satisfactory, but should be documented for future use.

Within the graveled area traffic is generally

sufficient to keep the weeds down where the cars park. Occasional weeding is necessary, however, especially in pedestrian areas, such as the path behind the boulder island and in front of the trellis. 3.

THE BOULDER ISLAND

As the landscape of the boulder island is entirely herbaceous, the occasional tree or shrub seedling which develops should be removed.

This area has always featured wildflowers which

volunteer in the shelter of the boulders and should be selectively weeded to favor attractive flowers and a pattern of descending height with the tallest blooms close to the rocks and the shortest plants at the front edges.


4.

SOUTH-FACING EDGE

Management of the south-facing edge should be directed toward sustaining the monospecific character of the understory and shrub bands of dogwood and laurel.

The herbaceous layer

should be maintained similarly to the boulder island.

The

vines such as woodbine and coltsfoot which tendril over the gravel are generally controlled by traffic.

Any disturbance

vegetation such as Mexican bamboo, barberry, or ailanthus should be removed before it becomes well established.

The

area between the exit from the autumn path and the entrance drive has been disturbed for a number of years by storage of construction materials.

All stockpiles and equipment should

be removed, and dogwood, laurel, and coltsfoot planted here to continue the banded edge right up to the driveway.

The

exit from the autumn path should be signalled by an event and this should be carefully designed. 5.

FERN RIVULET

This important window into the forest must be kept open all along its length, including the tiny gap filled with boulders where the corridor of ferns begins.

The branches of adjacent

hemlocks must be carefully pruned back so that they do not close over the ferns and obscure the light.

The ferns should

be weeded of all woody plants and any herbaceous material, other than extremely delicate wildflowers that will not overtop or overpower them. 6.

TRAIL NEXUS

This path connection will require occasional regraveling but less frequently than the parking court.

The gravel surface should

extend around the back of the studio all the way to the stream edge.

As in the parking lot, the gravel should be bounded by

rocks on the steep forested banks along either side of the path. The gravel should be weeded when necessary, and in the spring (March-April) the leaves should be raked from the gravel and away from the upper edges of the path as far as the eye can

57


see into the woods.

Within this zone, a distance that varies

from approximately 4' to 15', remedial pruning should be done when necessary to repair any damage to canopy and understory trees.


IB.

DRAGON ROCK:

HOUSE, STUDIO, 11.ND IMMEDIATE LANDSCAPE

DESCRIPTION

Wright thought of his house as an experiment, a place to explore many different ways of relating to the natural world while not sacrificing modern comforts or high design standards. The house at Dragon Rock is an integral part of the site and a remarkable demonstration of designing how man can live in the landscape.

The house is built on eleven levels to fit

into and mirror the descending ledges of the quarry wall. The flat roofs of the building are covered with vegetation and look much like the adjacent quarry ledges.

The house and

studio are largely built of materials found on the site. Natural materials are used within the house in unusual and unexpected ways -- stones for doorknobs, birchbark to panel a door, and pine needles pressed into green plaster to echo the pi.ne branches enveloping the house.

Haterials and spaces

flow from outside to inside and vice versa, with virtually every room opening onto an outdoor terrace roughly equivalent in size and use, interweaving the indoors and the outdoors and breaking down the traditional boundaries between the two. The stone floor of the terrace becomes the floor of the lower living room, and a high ledge of rock that encloses the terrace becomes the fireplace and chimney.

Around a giant

red cedar pillar cut from a nearby property, stone steps spiral down to the dining room and kitchen on a lower level. Inside, Boston ferns nestle in niches formed by these steps; this tropical fern mimicks the Christmas ferns that grow from the cracks in the terrace stones just outside the window. Not only is the house physically interwoven with the site, it also responds to the changing qualities of the living landscape. The house reflects the rhythm of the seasons with reversible panels, which are colored warm reds and bronzes for fall and winter on one side, and cool whites and greens for spring and summer on the other side.

It is not unlike the tradition of

59


taking up the rugs in spring. to the landscape.

The house becomes an introduction

Windows capture and frame special views,

focusing our attention on the elements of the forest in ways and in places we might not ordinarily look.

The studio windows

slide right down into the sill, disappearing as barriers to the outdoors.

From a couch built into a wall that is built

into the hillside, we view through windows that seem to be below ground.

We look out with a 'worm's eye view' of the

ground layer which is seen at eye level and gives us an uptilted display of the wonders of the forest floor.

The whole house

is designed to induoe the visitor to look more closely, to discard conventional attitudes, and to see nature freshly and in all her detail.

"Forced -to look, led to observe, one

suddenly sees, as though with new eyes, a world of beauty in the most ordinary things."*

*

Teiji Ito and Takeji rwamiya, The Japanese Garden (Tokyo: Zokeisha Publications, Ltd., 1978), p. 38.

60


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VIEW TO THE LIVING ROOM TERRACE AND THE QUARRY POND, FROM THE LIVING ROOM OF RUSSEL WRIGHT'S HOUSE


The stone steps in the living room spiraling around a tall pillar of red cedar which was cut from a neighboring property.


67


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IE.

1. 2. 3.

4. 5.

DRAGON ROCK:

HOUSE / STUDIO / AND IMMEDIATE LANDSCAPE

HOUSE AND STUDIO ANNIE'S WING, FRONT GARDEN TRELLIS AREA CUP GARDEN PATH ISLAND

6. 7. 8.

9.

ANNIE'S TERRACE LIVING ROOM TERRACE DINING ROOM TERRACE STUDIO TERRACE

69


IB.

DRAGON ROCK:

HOUSE, STUDIO, AND IMMEDIATE LANDSCAPE

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1.

HOUSE AND STUDIO

A major concern in the future should be the documentation and restoration of the architecture on the property.

There

should be a careful, accurate professional survey of both the house and studio which should include a record of the original furnishings and their arrangements.

Also needed is

a phased program of rehabilitation which would encompass the repair of major structural damage as well as address the restoration of architectural and decorative features, such as the peeling pine-needle plaster in the living room and the re-installation of the built-in furniture in the studio. The only actual 'landscape' within the house are the ferns growing in the niches along the stone stairway in the house living room.

These ferns, which died several years ago, are

the tropical look-alikes of our native Christmas fern.

They

should be replaced and the house occupant or caretaker/naturalist asked to water them regularly.

Small stones or fussy moss

gardens are not appropriate here.

These ferns in their boulder

niches should mimic the appearance of the ferns in the rocks on the terrace, directly in front of the window. outside the buildings, but very much part of the landscape, are the roofs of the house, trellis, and studio.

It took

many years to discover the secret of getting plants to grow on flat asphalt roofs. out had four steps.

The system Wright eventually worked

First, gravel the roof and add a small

amount of dirt; second, place chicken wire over the gravel and dirt; third, place pine needles over the chicken wire; and fourth, plant seedums and woodbine in the gravel and dirt, corning up through the chicken wire, and allowed to spread.

Where existing plants have been removed due to construction

and repair, this method should be employed to replant the roofs.

70


2.

ANNIE'S WING, FRONT GARDEN

The fine stand of Mexican bamboo found here must unfortunately be removed, as it is seeding into other parts of the garden. The entire plant including all parts of the roots must be dug out or it will resprout. with witchhazel. weeded.

This shrub could be replaced

This garden should be raked each year and

Christmas fern and drooping evergreen leucothoe

should occupy the goundlayer in the shadier areas with hay-scented ferns at the sunny margins.

Hemlocks should be

pruned if needed.

3.

TRELLIS AREA

The stone steps and gravel areas should be raked and weeded. Should the dutchman's pipe vine die or be damaged, it should be replaced.

The laurels here should be pruned of dead wood

and new laurel planted to fill out this area.

Wright used

a carpet of ajuga here as the groundlayer which. was badly damaged during later use.

Rxisting ajuga should be weeded

and new ajuga added to fill out bare spaces.

4.

CUP GARDEN

The 9round in this garden is a light covering of gravel, which will need to be redone only when more than half the ground is bare.

As this garden is a display of woodland wildflowers

and ferns, other herbaceous plants should be eliminated. partridge berry was the groundcover here. plants:

Keep only low

violets, bloodroot, baneberry, etc.

New groundcover

should be planted and the area enriched with appropriate wildflowers.

The laurel and dogwood here should be carefully

pruned to remove dead wood and be replaced if extensively damaged.

All replacements should be planted in exactly the

same locations.

\

.

Fern banks which have grown thln should be

enhanced with additional ferns of the same species.

As always

with Wright, management here should take advantage of nature's serendipity.

If some new plant appears which is in harmony

with the theme and spatial qualities of the garden, it should be encouraged.

71


5.

PATH ISLAND

This small island between the entrance to the winter path and the cup garden should be treated as an extension to the cup garden.

Like the cup garden, it should be a display of

understory and woodland shrubs and wildflowers.

All tree

seedlings should be pulled out by the roots, but interesting understory, such as amelanchier which has seeded itself in, should be encouraged.

This is an area that needs the enrichment

of woodland wildflowers with a strong shape and interesting berries such as baneberry. 6.

ANNIE'S TERRACE

Annie's terrace should have a lush overgrown quality without appearing rank or weedy.

Encourage the attractive, prolific

plants such as the woodbine and violets, while removing coarse weeds such as wild lettuce.

Here and on the living room

terrace, meadow wildflowers (6"-18") such as daisies or Queen Anne's lace should be encouraged to grow up between the cracks in the paving stones. 7.

LIVING ROOM TERRACE

Meadow wildflowers should be encouraged to grow between the cracks in the paving and at the edges of the terrace, and the heaping woodbine allowed to sprawl gracefully on the rocks.

The laurels should be pruned for shape and to remove

dead wood. ferns.

Replace any dead or severely damaged laurels or

Wright's elegant porch furniture should be restored

or rebuilt for special display here. 8.

DINING ROOM TERRACE

As with all terraces, rank weedy growth should be removed and all edges and surfaces kept crisp and clean.

Any missing

paving stones should be replaced with ones of the same shape qnd material.

The cliff above this terrace should be Christmas

fern and woodbine in monospecific bands.

There is a small

English boxwood on this terrace planted by Annie's English governess as a symbol of her homeland.

When this plant dies,

it should be replaced with laurels.

72.


9.

STUDIO TERRACE

This terrace is gravel and will need periodic replacement when the gravel is thin.

The surrounding boulders should be

kept clean and free of weeds and debris.

The selection of

terrace furniture is important as the landscape can be easily marred by inappropriate furnishings.

Time and effort should

be spent to restore the very simple and elegant lounges and chairs which wright designed.

73


IC.

DRAGON ROCK:

THE QUARRY WALLS AND LOWER QUARRY PATH

DESCRIPTION

The steep-faced quarry walls embrace the quarry pond in landscapes seen uptilted against rock.

Across from the house,

the near vertical rock face is almost bare, while the shallower south-facing quarry wall descends in steps down to the quarry. At the top of this wall, from under the connecting trellis, we stand high in the leafy canopy of sycamore trees rooted far below us in the fern bank beside the pond.

The next broad

ledge is characterized by bands of understory, first laurel and farther down spicebush.

At the bottom of the slope, we

find ourselves at the herbaceous layer of the forest edge, with hay-scented ferns, woodbine, and wildflowers.

This

fringing of wildflowers opens out onto a floriferous daylily slope near the quarry dam. The lower qyarry path is about the quarry itself, a great hole gouged deep enough into the landscape to uncover the structure of its geology. the studio.

The visitor begins this walk at

From this high point, one can view down into

the quarry hole, now partially filled with water.

From the

studio, carefully placed rock steps descend to landings, broad ledges of the quarry which are also terraces of the house. Mid-point along the route, one meets the source of this water, the place where the stream enters the quarry and tumbles down the hillside in a series of cascades and pools which highlight the natural cleavage patterns of the rock.

At the quarry

bottom, there is a small peninsula carefully constructed and placed where the stream would have gradually built a little delta.

We cross the stream on a plank.

Each of Wright's

bridges is different and has a message about the experience along the path.

Each makes us realize something about the

variety of the possible ways of crossing water.

The plank is

74


an unworked slice of tree trunk too narrow for more than one to cross, suggesting danger and adventure. Here the path is squeezed between the ledges of the quarry wall and the pond.

These ledges have been cleared of brambles

and planted with thick rugs of moss.

Pockets of ferns, shrubs,

and tree seedlings grow in the litter and thin mineral soil that has accumulated in the cracks between the stones.

These

cracks form little displays which focus our attention on the slow process of colonization on this rock face. The goal of this path is the secret room, a small alcove blasted into the quarry wall.

The steps leading up to this

room become a journey into the heart of the rock itself. This room is a place of pause and contemplation, a sanctuary or retreat.

When Wright wished to be alone, this was the

place he would come to escape unwanted visitors.

To protect

this secret room, Wright disguised the final portion of. the path as part of the scree of the quarry and planted hemlocks to hide the entrance, making it more difficult to find.


SECTION THROUGH THE SOUTH -FACING WALL OF THE QUARRY.

The top of the Quarry wall Is embraced by the canopy of the sycamore trees, whrJe midway down the slope, spicebush and laurel form contInuous bands of shrubs and at the bottom of the slope, the herbaceous layer of the forest Is called out by meadows of ferns and wild flowers, rIngIng the pond edge.

76


FROM THE STUDIO, CAREFULLY PLACED ROCK STEPS DESCEND TO LANDINGS ON THE BROAD LEDGES OF THE QUARRY.

77


South-facing quarry edge below trellis

76


Noss-covered ledges of west-facing quarry rval_I

79


Clump of hay-scented ferns dramatically accented against the smooth rock ledges of the west-facing quarry wall.

60


STONE STEPS LEADING TO THE SECRET ROOM, THE DESTINATION OF THE . LOWER QUARRY PATH. 61


IC.

1. 2. 3. 4.

DRAGON ROCK:

SOUTH-FACING EDGE STONE STEPS DAYLILY SLOPE DELTA AREA

QUARRY WALLS AND LOWER QUARRY PATH

5. 6. 7. 8.

PLANK BRIDGE CLIFF LEDGES AND CLIFF PATH SECRET ROOM NORTH-FACING SLOPE

62


IC.

DRAGON ROCK:

QUARRY WALLS AND LOWER QUARRY PATH

MANlJ.GEMENT GUIDELINES 1.

THE SOU2W-FACING EDGE

The south-facing edge i.s a luxuriant display of the tall shrubs and herbaceous growth characteristic of a wet sunny habitat in this region.

Non-native plants, such as the

English boxwood, and native plant.s from other habitats. such as the American hollies and rhododendron, should be eventually removed from this slope.

Invasive aliens, such as

bamboo, should be removed immediately.

Mex~~an

Rank weedy growth,

such as wild lettuce, should be pulled up by the roots.

'['he

fern banks should be carefully weeded to create bold swathes. Tree seedlings should also be pulled out, except for new sycamore seedlings, at the base of the quarry.

The sycamores

have antbracnosis, '",hieh causes them to lose their first leaves in spring and look unsightly.

'l'his disease is' not

fatal and should be ignored. 2.

STONE STEPS

The steps f.rom the studio shou Id be weeded to

}~eep

their

surfaces clean so that they show clearly in the landscape and are not overwhelmed with vegetation.

Loose steps should

be reset firmly in place. 3.

DAYLILY SLOPE

The daylilies have now completely naturalized here and have spread to cover the entire cliff.

However, the cliff is

rapidly being overtaken by grapevines and ailanthus saplings. The cliff is very steep and access by ladder in the winter when the quarry is frozen is recommended for clearing away grape and ailanthus.


4â&#x20AC;˘

DELTA AREA

The delta and path in this area are gravel and should be regraveled when bare spots or worn areas appear.

Like the

other graveled areas, the delta should be raked clean of leaves and debris in early spring and should also be weeded if necessary.

Large coarse herbaceous material should be

removed from areas around the edge of the gravel, and the boundaries, although irregular, kept crisp and well defined. The elderberry on the tip of the peninsula should be pruned for shape and replaced when it dies.

Behind the peninsula,

the young hemlocks should be cut down, and the entire area up to the cliff should be regraveled. 5.

THE PLANK BRIDGE

In case of damage, this bridge should be replaced with a duplicate of the original.

Treatment with a clear

weatherproofing oil will prolong its life. 6.

CLIFF LEDGES AND CLIFF PATH

Like many environments of stress, the quarry ledges have a crisp, well-defined quality that should be maintained by selective weeding.

The moss which was planted on the ledge

must be weeded yearly.

It is an ideal seedbed for trees and

shrubs and will be rapidly overtaken by woody plants unless weeded.

At the base of these ledges, along the path, each

group of plants should maintain a definite form.

For example,

ferns should remain as specific clumps and not develop into broad swathes.

Many tree seedlings are sprouting among the

crevices of the rocks.

These should not be allowed to develop

into saplings but should be removed and new seedlings allowed to take their places.

Again, all rank herbaceous material

should be removed. The path consists of carefully placed rocks with a flat face up which define the place to walk within the scree and tumbled boulders.

Many of these rocks are loose and dangerous.

They

64


should be fixed in the same positions as they are currently found -- checking photographs for a record of placement -under the supervision of Baldev Raju.

wright learned to place

stepping stones from the Japanese and he follows the same rules.

The important stones are placed first.

These are

the largest and most interestingly shaped stones.

The

initial stone is laid before any of the others, then the last stone, and then the stones for pausing to view.

Once

the places for these stones are determined, the other stones are placed in a way which is natural, not only to the walker but to the stones themselves (e.g., the projecting portions of one stone should face a hollow section of the next).

Where

additional stones are needed, such as the fern steps on the winter path or where a stone must be replaced without record of its size and location, these rules should be carefully observed. 7.

SECRET ROOM

The two hemlocks planted among the steps leading to the secret room both hide the entrance and create a colonnade around which the steps turn.

If these should die they should be replaced.

The floor of the secret room should be soft hemlock duff. Branches and other debris should be raked up in the early spring and removed.

Hemlocks in the interior of the room

should have the dead lower branches removed to create a space that, although dark, is also open and airy. 8.

NORTH-FACING SLOPE

This nearly sheer cliff is the dragon's back and nose.

Wright

liked to see this rock face bare and shiny and cut off all the birch seedlings that continuously sprout there.

Ideally,

a completely bare cliff is desirable and extremely dramatic but difficult to achieve.

Keeping down a major portion of

the birch seedlings is a satisfactory compromise.

Wright

accomplished this weeding by putting a ladder against the cliff when the ice in the quarry was solidly frozen.

65


ID.

DRAGON ROCK:

THE QUARRY POND AND STREAM

DESCRIPTION

The quarry, when Wright found it, was a great dry hole, its bottom filled with cut stones, debris, brambles, and young trees.

wright cleared out the old quarry pit, built a dam

across the bottom, and diverted a small stream to run into the quarry, creating a reflecting pond and a spectacular waterfall.

He carefully designed the course of this waterfall

by blasting the ledges until they broke away in smooth steps. A series of pools were also constructed out of boulders. Lastly, he placed a large rock in the pond just beyond where the stream enters the quarry to make a break in the large expanse of water and to serve as a raft for divers and swimmers.

66


ID.

1 • 2. 3.

DRAGON ROCK:

THE QUARRY POND AND STREAM

THE QUARRY STREAM THE POOL THE DOCK AND CHANGING ROOM

87


ID.

DRAGON ROCK:

THE QUARRY POND AND STREAM

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1.

THE QUARRY STREAM

This carefully constructed piece of the stream suffers extensive damage during major storms.

The little dams which create the

series of descending pools can break and will need to be mended. The smooth ledges which create the cascades can become littered with rocks and debris brought down from above and will need to be cleared.

Vegetation at the edge of the channel, such as

the grape vine leaping over the boulders at the edge, should not be allowed to intrude on the stream itself.

Understory

shrubs, such as spicebush and witchhazel, should be pruned if damaged, and this pruning should encourage an arching form. Some spicebush should be topped to allow the waterfall tO,be seen from the dining room. 2.

THE POOL

currently there is a problem with coontail growth.

To prevent

its spreading, the coontail should be raked out early in sun~er

and again early in the fall.

Coontail may be allowed

to grow along the western edge of the pond where a swamp haoitat is developing.

Leaves must also be removed to prevent

the pond from becoming marshy.

This can be done by opening

the dam early in spring when the force of the water entering the pond will help push out large clumps of leaves.

Every few

years, the lake should be entirely drained and the leaves on the bottom removed. 3.

THE DOCK AND CHANGING ROOM

Routine maintenance should preserve these architectural features.

66


IE.

DRAGON ROCK:

THE UPPER QUARRY PATH

DESCRIPTION

This path is a short, twenty-minute loop that begins close to the house where the stream enters the quarry; leads the walker through a hemlock grove at the top of the quarry cliffs; down to a birch grove on a mossy plateau with a view back to the house; around the dragon's nose; over a small pastoral hill; across the dam; and back up to the house again, ending at the living room terrace. The theme of the entire circuit is a concentrated sampling of the types of landscapes and landscape events that this site can offer:

wet forests, dry forests, forests of different

ages -- old, mature, young, pioneer -- and absence of forest: gaps, holes, meadows, and edges.

The climax of the walk is a

recapitulation of the whole context of the site:

a dramatic

view from the living room terrace out across Mary's Meadow to the Hudson River Valley . .The path is divided into two major segments, the Spring Path and the Pastoral Hill Path.

The spring Path, set in a hemlock

grove within the mixed deciduous forest, calls out the seasonality of the landscape and the spatial qualities of the mature forest.

The Spring Path begins with a break in

the forest that occurs at a stream corridor which has been thinned to favor the yellow birch growing on rocky islands. Their shiny, curled bark calls out the stream course through the forest and draws the eye to the profusion of wetland wildflowers nestled among their roots.

One of the places in

the stream was called the white violet pool.

A few stepping

stones lead us from this younger successional landscape into the cathedral-like space of an ancient forest, with its bare duff ground and heavy enclosing canopy.

The central portion

of the walk, for which the path was named, traverses a still, dark hemlock grove where Wright limbed up the trees and sparse shrubs to create the illusion of age in a mature and slowly


changing landscape which is dominated by tree trunks.

Light

is used as a dramatic technique to focus on the events within the structure of this forest.

This path is at its height in

late spring, when the walker is made aware of the contrast between the darkness and permanence of the evergreens and the ephemeral quality of the spring blooms, which are bathed in shafts of light that occasionally pierce through the closed canopy.

Smaller clearings form lit alcoves which spotlight

a family of grey boulders or a mass of feathery ferns.

At

the climax of the walk, the visitor bursts out of the dark, enclosing grove and into a huge bright opening:

the laurel

field. From the mature forest themes of the spring Path, the walker experiences the varied phases of the developing forest on the Pastoral Hill Path.

A curving flight of stone steps through

a dark tunnel of hemlock signals the beginning of the journey leading to a bright open plateau with a grove of small, twisted grey birches.

A friend of Wright named these light and dancing

trees the "Martha Graham girls".

All of the trees were cleared

here except the birch to create a sense of a relic forest opening, enclosed by hemlock and the quarry cliffs.

It is a

place of pause with a spectacular view of the quarry and waterfall, as well as the house and studio nestled into the opposite quarry face. The path continues to the pastoral hill, carpeted in the rough grass and wild strawberries of an agricultural pasture.

It is

bounded by tiny herbaceous meadows of moss or ferns or perennial wildflowers.

From the hilltop there is a broad view to Mary's

Meadow, a large late-woody oldfield with groves of dogwood and a great specimen oak as its centerpiece, a reminder of the forest which was cut down years before to create the field. The path continues to the quarry dam. stepping stones.

The dam is traversed on

When the water level is high, one is forced

to tiptoe across; and even when the water level is low, one is intimately aware of the water flowing between the stones.

90


Across the dam, two tall red cedars flank a big boulder like pillars, inviting one to sit and look back across the quarry pond and recapitulate the varied landscapes one has just walked through.

The climax of the walk returns the visitor

to the main house terrace and the sweeping vista do\Y:n to the Hudson River below.

91


The connecting trail to the Spr_ing Path, with a view of the stream in the distance \0 "-l


\

...

.

'.

. ,,

VIEW BACK fROM THE SPRING PATH ENTRANCE TO THE SAGGY BRIDGE WHICH CROSSES THE QUARRY POND STREAM.

.


View along Lm,'er Spring Path

94


View of the stepping stones across the dam to the ferny steps below the Pastoral iiill Path.

96


o

.w

ill

-e: .w E

o

~ S

OJ

.~

97


IE1.

DRAGON ROCK:

THE UPPER QUARRY PATH -THE SPRING PATH

r

1. 2. 3.

4.

BRIDGE STREAM CORRIDOR

5. 6.

ROOM ADJACENT TO STREAM CORRIDOR UPPER PATH

7.

LAUREL ISL.l1NDS ALCOVES ON THE UPPER PATH LOWER PATH

96


IE1.

DRAGON ROCK:

THE UPPER QUARRY PATH -THE SPRING PATH

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1.

BRIDGE

Repair boards and beams when necessary.

The bridge was

intended to feel saggy and should not be repaired in such a way as to substantially alter its character, such as adding handrails or making it rigid. 2.

STREAM CORRIDOR

All woody and rank herbaceous growth should be removed, leaving only the yellow birch and ferns and wildflowers among their roots.

Wright wanted to contrast the simplicity

of the yellow birch and the starkness of the rock with the lushness of the herbaceous wetland plants.

The stream

corridor itself should be kept clean of encroaching understory vegetation to allow the eye to travel visually up the stream as far as the first bend. 3.

ROOM ADJACENT TO STREAM CORRIDOR

This small room of laurels should be raked and kept free of branches and debris.

Small seedlings and saplings of species

other than laurel should be removed.

When existing laurels

die, they should be replaced with others from the property. In order to maintain adequate light in this space, a few major limbs or even a tree or two may have to be removed. A major boulder is the focus and the background for this room; shrubs should not be allowed to obscure it. 4.

UPPER PATH

The entire upper path should be raked lightly as needed, taking care not to disturb the moss, duff cover, or ladyslippers.

Some hand removal of debris may be required.

99


Remove the lower branches of the hemlocks, particularly the dead branches, to let in more light and to create a cathedral-like forest space.

Selected hemlocks may also have to be removed,

as well as major limbs, to thin the hemlock crowns in order to admit sufficient light to the laurel islands and herbaceous plantings. 5.

LAUREL ISLANDS

Currently the laurels are dying from lack of light and nutrients. Thinning the hemlocks and fertilizing with Hollytone in early fall should bring the laurels back to health.

Where old laurels

have died, their location should be carefully recorded and new laurels planted as replacements.

The laurels should be

pruned as necessary to remove dead wood and refine their leggy, gnarled branching patterns. 6.

ALCOVES ON THE UPPER PATH

Do not allow growth to obscure the small paths or stone steps which lead to the alcoves adjacent to the upper path.

The

Hemlock Room is walled with tall hemlocks and is inhabited by a family of boulders.

Wright seeded in wild thyme here, most

of which has disappeared.

This area could be replanted with

any native herbaceous plant with light, silvery foliage, such as Solomon's Seal.

Weed away all shrub and tree seedlings and

extraneous herbaceous material to create a silvery carpet which catches the light.

The Laurel Room is the second alcove and

is carpeted with lady ferns that have become a solid mass. This room is surrounded by laurel and backed by hemlock. There is a view through this room to white birch trunks in the forest beyond, which should be kept open by clearing. CUrrently, the hemlock are encroaching on this room and many laurel have died.

Occasional hemlock should be removed and

the laurel replanted.

While there is no canopy in these rooms,

adjacent branches may restrict the light and should be removed where necessary.

100


7â&#x20AC;˘

LOWER PATH

Management here is similar to that described for the upper path.

Limited pruning may be required to maintain selected

views to the quarry.

The lady-slippers that Wright planted

here have never done as well as expected.

Larry Pardue has

suggested that this is because they were damaged when the trail is raked in the spring.

Experimental areas should be

left unraked until the lady-slippers bloom to see whether reproduction is encouraged.

Lack of light here is certainly

a factor, and with canopy pruning the number of ladY-slippers may also increase.

101


IE2.

1. 2. 3. 4.

DRAGON ROCK:

THE UPPER QUARRY PATH -THE PASTORAL HILL PATH

CURVED STONE STEPS GREY BIRCH GROVE PASTORAL HILL HERBACEOUS MEADOWS BORDERING PASTORAL HILL

5. 6. 7.

DAM AND STEPPING STONES BROAD STEPS TO WILDFLOWER MEADOW WILDFLOWER MEADOW

102


IE2.

DRAGON ROCK:

THE UPPER QUARRY PATH -THE PASTORAL HILL PATH

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1 â&#x20AC;˘

CURVED STONE STEPS

These steps are unlike any other on the property.

They were

not designed by Wright but were made by the stone mason who did the work on the house as a surprise gift for Wright, who was so touched by the gesture that they were always special to him.

Leaves, debris, and dead branches should be removed

from the steps and from the forest side of the path to a distance of approximately 50 I, formed by the hillside here. dead branches removed.

or within the entire bowl The hemlocks should have all

Within this edge zone, even the hemlock

duff should be swept off five or six of the big rocks to heighten the contrast between the dark hemlocks and the bright rocks.

Any piece of hemlock forest that can be seen from the

path should not be used as a dumping ground for leaf or branch piles.

Leaves and forest litter should also be removed from

the rocky scree on the opposite side to encourage the "growth of moss. 2.

GREY BIRCH GROVE

These birches are short-lived and will eventually require replacsnent.

When this is necessary, replant with small,

6' to 8' tall, multi-stemmed clumps.

These probably could be

dug from the property near the scree bank between the pastoral hill and Mary's Meadow.

Meanwhile prune away any dead or

broken branches when necessary and rake leaves to expose the rocks and encourage a moss carpet under the birches. and branch

r~noval

Raking

should be done all the way to the edge of

the small hemlock grove on the dragon's nose, so that the birches and the hemlocks can be seen against the mossy rocks piled here at the top of the quarry.

Young oaks and tree seedlings

other than birch could be pulled out by the roots.

IO~


3.

PASTORAL HILL

Scythe the grass once every six to eight weeks in the summer to preserve the sense of rough pasture.

Pull up tree and

shrub seedlings coming in at the edges and also all briars and vines. 4.

HERBACEOUS MEADOWS BORDERING PASTORAL HILL

The fern meadows, including the slope adjacent to the steps, should be hasically monospecific swaths with an occasional accent of some special wildflower or even a large coarse but sculptural weed, such as mullein.

The tiny wildflower meadow

in front of the three old hemlocks should be primarily perennials, such as goldenrod and asters.

Coarse weeds,

vines, and tree and shrub seedlings should be pulled out by hand.

The meadow of hairy cap moss is rapidly filling in with

birch seedlings.

Most of these seedlings should be pulled out

by hand leaving only one or two small clumps which should be removed every two to three years and not allowed to become trees. 5.

A few new seedlings should be left to become new clumps.

DAM AND STEPPING STONES

stepping stones should be re-cemented if loosened. be checked yearly to be sure it is 6.

~n

Dam should

good condition.

BROAD STEPS TO WILDFLOWER MEADOW

Any loose stones should be re-cemented and steps should be weeded if necessary. 7â&#x20AC;˘

WILDFLOWER MEADOW

This meadow is located above the daylily slope and below Annie's terrace.

This sumptuous meadow of daisies, butterfly

weed, and Queen Anne's lace should be scythed annually in late August just after flowering to perpetuate these species and to prevent the growth of woody species.

The steps to the

living room terrace should be weeded selectively to keep the wildflowers from growing over them and without making the boundaries so neat that the sense of these flowers running riot is lost.

104


II.

THE NEW CORE

INTRODUCTION

The guide house and the visitors' parking lot form the nucleus of the new core which also includes the public entry drive and its surrounding landscapes.

The primary function of this

area is to welcome and orient the visitor.

Wright himself

designed the visitors' center and the extension of the trail system to accommodate public use and anticipated increased visitorship at Manitoga.

With his death, however, the process

of developing the exhibits of the visitors' core ceased.

The

reason for this separate entrance is to give privacy to the main house to which Anne Wright, Russel's daughter, has life tenancy.

In his last years Wright had hoped to build a

conference center in this area on a site below the guide house.

It was originally hoped that this facility would

function as a headquarters for The Nature Conservancy's preservation program in the Hudson Valley area.

Although

initial explorations were made, the conference center was never built. death.

The new core was not fully completed at Wright's

Although the guide house has some of the qualities of

the main house and the entry drive is gracious and well sited with uncbtrusive parking, as a statement of Wright's design intent at Manitoga the landscape lacks the force and refinement of the work at Dragon Rock.

It should be noted as well that

the new core has many untapped landscape resources.

For

example, there are a number of spectacular landscape features which Wright had envisioned as potential exhibit sites, such as the waterfall above the little quarry, the little quarry itself, and the braided streilln adjacent to it -- all now hidden by brillnbles and thick undergrowth -- as well as forests of very different character in several distinctly different habitats.


The new core needs greater critical mass so that it can develop an importance equal to the original core. however, be different and complementary.

Its function should, As the primary theme

of the original core is to exhibit the most concentrated dose of Wright's principles in designing with nature, where great variety and drama was created out of a few simple habitats, so the new core could develop its exhibit potential as the place where themes pertinent to Manitoga as a nature center are introduced.

Themes, such as a synoptic presentation of

typical habitats of the region, would be appropriate here. Wright's theatrical vision should set the tone and quality of these exhibits, where the dramatic visual presentation of the landscape becomes the message, not a series of disparate displays or explanatory signs.

These exhibits should be

established over time and modeled on Wright's own approach of careful observation and selective intervention. should also serve to demonstrate and management to the public.

ecolog~cal

They

landscape design

The specific design and future

development of this critical area will be determined in master planning.

However, guidelines for interim management are given.

MAJOR ;FEATURES OF THE NEW CORE

A.

Core Facilities: entry drive, visitor's parking lot, guide house, and amphitheater.

B.

Forest, field and stream landscapes.

106


IIA.

THE NEW CORE:

CORE FACILITIES

DESCRIPTION

The core facilities include all the services used by public visitors to Manitoga:

the entry drive and gateway, the parking

lot, the guide house and its immediate surroundings.

The

area also includes the quarry amphitheater and the connecting trail to Dragon Rock, relic pieces of Wright's older designs whose new use is anticipated in 1983.

Although all these

services were designed by Wright, he did not live long enough after their installation to be able to elaborate their landscapes or to solidify any central organizing theme for these areas.

They remain pleasant, attractive facilities

which fit exceptionally well into the landscape because they are tucked into the site and built largely of materials native to the region.

The quarry amphitheater, the connecting path

to Dragon Rock, and the landscapes adjacent to the parking area were not crnnpleted at Wright's death and have yet to develop a distinct character.

107


100


IIA.

1. 2.

THE NEW CORE:

ENTRY DRIVE PARKING LOT

CORE FACILITIES

3.

4.

GUIDE HOUSE AND LANDSCAPE QUARRY AMPHITHEATER J09


IIA.

THE NEW CORE:

CORE FACILITIES

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1.

ENTRY DRIVE

Under the direction of Joe Chapman, the entry gate was repainted and made more visible.

Chapman has also designed

a new sign for this entrance which states the theme of the place, times of access, etc.

This handsome sign replaces a

poorly executed notice board.

It should be policy at Manitoga

that all signs, brochures, and trail guides are of high graphic quality in keeping with the character of the place and Wright's own superb design abilities.

Lastly, the entry gate should be

open only when Manitoga is open.

The road itself should be

regraveled when necessary and the adjacent runoff channels kept clear of brushy vegetation and debris.

2.

PARKING LOT

The major problem with the parking lot is the lack of a distinct landscape character.

Each edge has the potential

to become a strong and interesting display but is currently undeveloped or obscured by invasive alien plants.

Existing

laurel plantings are inappropriate to the habitat and so appear to be poorly sited. remain are not thriving.

Many have died and the few that It is critical to develop a design

for this area in the master planning phase, but spot management now will sharpen the experience of the existing vegetation and landscape features in order to present the visitor with a stronger first impression of Manitoga.

The first priority

in this interim period should be to regravel the parking lot. The second priority is to remove alien species that have colonized its edges, such as Norway maple, sycamore maple, and ailanthus.

The briars on either side should also be removed.

Coarse herbaceous material growing at the edges of the lot

110


should be selectively weeded to present an interesting appearance. On the east-facing edge, woodbine and other decorative native vines such as sweet autumn clematis should be encouraged to mound over the stone wall.

New vines could be planted here,

but not large invasive species such as grape or bittersweet. At the far end of the parking area where the gravel dribbles off into a flat grassy area obscuring the boundaries of the lot, careful placement of a few large boulders would prevent cars parking on the grass and help define both spaces.

These

boulders should be chosen and placed under the supervision of Joe Chapman and Baldev Raju.

Railroad ties should not be used

because they are too rigid in form and too suburban in character to fit into this site, and an old tree trunk would seem too stark in this open area.

This same area has recently lost a

large ash which was its only feature.

Planting a small grove

of three to five white ash saplings in a tight clump would help to replace this loss.

3.

GUIDE HOUSE AND LANDSCAPE

Enhancing the potential of the guide house with relevant exhibits will be the single most important action to take here.

Care should be taken not to obscure or damage this tiny

building

~s

the exhibits become more elaborate.

been discussion of winterizing this facility.

There has Any architectural

changes made to the building should be carefully reviewed by a qualified architectural consultant familiar with Wright's work.

4.

QUARRY AMPHITHEATER

To function as an inviting outdoor classroom, this tiny quarry requires the removal of all brambles, coarse herbaceous vegetation, and any disturbance species such as ailanthus. The quarry floor should be kept free of all vegetation and the surrounding canopy and understory pruned to remove dead branches, encourage a characteristic form, and to let more light into the forest floor.

This area should be designed

and enriched after a theme has been determined in the master planning process.

The design should include an attractive access

path from the guide house.

111


IIB.

THE NEW CORE:

FOREST I FIELD, AND STREAM LANDSCAPES

DESCRIPTION

particularly in the vicinity of the proposed Nature Center there are a number of potentially spectacular sites which Wright hoped to reclaim from the brambles in conjunction with the construction of the new building.

These sites include

a channeled stream and dammed pool, a hemlock grotto with waterfall, a broad silty flat where the stream braids through alluvium, a very young red maple woodland, an older disturbed lowland forest with large relic canopy trees, and a disturbed upland forest with a well developed dogwood edge adjacent to the parking lot.

The area of the new core also includes

several other sites which could be developed as interpretive exhibits:

a young red maple/cherry woodland, a tall grass

meadow, and a hedgerow of sugar maples along an old stone wall.

112


IIB.

1 •

THE NEW CORE:

FOREST , FIELD, AND STREAM LANDSCAPES

ENTRY MEADOW

113


I IB •

THE NEW CORE:

FOREST, FIELD, AND STREAM LANDSCAPES

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES

A comprehensive design and management program for the forest, stream, and field landscapes of the new core should be considered in the master plan once a theme for this area has been determined and agreed upon.

These landscapes should not be undertaken

until the original core and transition areas are restored and management there is reduced to a minimum.

Fund-raising

packages for each individual area could be sold to prospective donors.

As a general recommendation for the entire area we

would advise allowing natural succession to continue, while finding and documenting any potential landscape events and areas whose experience might be heightened by future management.

1•

ENTRY MEADOW

Although currently very attractive in tall grasses, this meadow could develop greater species variety by altering the· mowing cycle to favor wildflowers.

This should be done by

cutting the area once annually in the fall after a hard frost and by enriching it with clumps of perennial wildflowers typical of the region, such as goldenrod and aster.

114


III.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

THE OUTER TRAILS

INTRODUCTION

Wright's woodland paths are carefully orchestrated journeys into the forest.

Each path is the sequential unfolding of a

number of stories about the life and design of the forest. Along the trails our experience is a pulsed one, conflned largely to the path corridor itself and the nodal events which occur along it.

These events are the places where man

or the elements have disturbed the overall repetitive pattern of the forest.

These events occur either along the

path, as offshoots from it, as alcoves beside it, or as Vlews out from it.

A major event, such as the laurel field or lost

pond, is often the climax and final destination of a path. As the trails move away from the core areas deeper into the forest, these events become 'found' places rather than created ones.

EVents also occur at greater distances apart.

Returning

toward Dragon Rock, this experience is reversed and events are increasingly more designed and build more rapidly along the paths. In these transitional areas, management is focused, like our experience, on the path corridor and the nodal events along it.

Two important aspects of these trails should be noted.

First, all of these paths have a storyline and are best traveled in a specific direction.

They may be walked in the

reverse direction and are still wonderful, but the storyline unfolds in one direction only.

Second, regardless of the art

in question, no sculpture is appropriate along the trails or in the forest rooms.

These rooms create the space and the

setting for the individual features of the site, such as a tree or shrub, boulder or cliff, stream or pool, which are the sculptures within them.

Any other approach distracts the

visitor from understanding Wright's primary purpose, which was to reveal the natural processes and aesthetic qualities of a particular place.

115


MAJOR FEATURES OF THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

A.

Autumn Path and Sunset Walk

B.

Winter Path and Morning Walk

C.

Wnite Pine Path

D.

Deer Pool Path

E.

Trail to Lost Pond

F.

Zigzag Trail, The Return from Lost Pond

G.

Fern Meadow Path

H.

Wickopee Trail

I.

Killalemy Trail

J.

Laurel Field

K.

Laurel Field, Upper Trail

L.

Deer Run

M.

Mary's Meadow

"6


IIIA.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

AUTUMN PATH AND SUNSET WALK

DESCRIPTION

The Autumn Path is about seeing the layers of the forest through the medium of color.

Whereas we normally experience

the forest as a uniform curtain of green with vegetation from ground to canopy, Wright used fall color to callout each species by its characteristic and recognizable shade of red, yellow, or purple.

The walker can see how plant species qo

together by becoming aware of the patterns they create.

Wrignt

heightened the effect of color by selectively removing or replanting large numbers of lndividuals in each layer, making each element large enouqh to be easily perceived.

In a

completely mixed deciduous forest (an environment frequently dismissed as too SUbtle to be comprehenslble and where one cannot rely on the contrast between deciduous and evergreen to reveal the inherent patterns) Wright teaches the visitor to go beyond the individual plant in order to appreciate how entire plant communities behave.

And with his characteristic sense

of theater, all this is done in the light of the afternoon sun burning through the forest, making all the autumn leaves shimmer and glow. trail.

The Autumn Path is Wright's most seasonal

Autumn afternoons are its most spectacular moment and

it should be used as a special walk in that season. Wright described this journey as follows: liMy Sunset ;path also doubles as the Autumn Path. an offshoot of the Winter Walk.

It starts as

The entrance is marked by a

few biq stone steps which take you over the embankment.

To

draw one's attention from the main path, I have planted four new birch whose white trunks are seen through the dark hemlocks. As you reach the top of the embankment, it is late afternoon, and you see these dramatically lighted against the screen of hemlocks.

Around them I have transplanted witchhazel bushes

whose yellow blooms last through late November.

117


"On the other

s~de

of the path I have left a baffle of maple

and hemlocks to hide the approach to the "mrprise feature of th~s

walk.

As the path turns, you sUddenly see the main feature

a theatrical scene at sunset -- throuqh the trees (which have been thinned), the setting sun shines from the back of a distant mountain on the Hudson River.

The path leads to a window-like

vista which is framed by ancient hemlocks and a formation of some eighteen-foot high boulders. sculpture form flat

p~atforms

Parts of this great gran1te

large enough to hold a picnic

or several spectators of the sunset.

The upright me.mbers of

this sculptured composition are great for climbing and exploration. This complex is sheltered by several huge lSO-year-old hemlocks, and this is where one finds patches of fur so that you know that this is where the deer bed down.

The path runs throuqh

this huge sculpture and then makes a steep descent, and turns again to reveal another surprise vista:

through the trees you

now see a long horizontal shining streak made by the sun on the Hudson.

At your feet and around you is a small sea of

viburnum which are many shades of wine red in the fall. "Below, across the path,

I have planted a long horizontal

drift of deep purple asters and beyond that is a familv of small boulders, among which I have planted trailing bittersweet because of its bright yellow leaves and berries. "continuing, you will find that I have thinned the woods to make an opening on one side to reveal a beautiful cliff which is about 200 feet from the path. "Further on, on the other side, the clearing made for an old trash ptt has been covered and seeded with the weed called Indian tobacco whose red blooms in September are repeated by the leaves and berries of the dogwood which surround this little clearing. "At the bottom of the descent you begin to see the sun on the water of a small swamp.

This was made by the bulldozers when

they removed fill for my house, and I am naturalizing it with swamp plantings.

116


"Continuing downward are two more sharp turns and you get the full sweep of the swamp ringed with dogwood, a black willow, and a scarlet-leaved tupelo tree.

A few steps from here you

find the parking area and the house."*

* Russel

Wright,

"A

Garden oe Woodland Paths" I manuscript.

119


The bowl along the Autumn Path, with ring of understory trees called out in brilliant autumn colors.

120


IIIA.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

AUTUMN PATH AND SUNSET WALK

Map 1 of 2

1. 2.

3. 4. 5.

PATH ENTRANCE THE TRAIL THE WESTERN OVERLOOK THE BOWL THE BOULDER AMPHITHEATER

121


IIIA.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

AUTUMN PATH AND SUNSET WALK

Map 2 of 2

5. 6. 7. 8.

THE BOULDER AMPHITHEATER HUDSON RIVER VIEW SWAMP PATH TO PARKING LOT

122


IIIA.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

AUTUMN PATH AND SUNSET WALK

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES

This path suffered much damage in the 1976 hurricane and much neglect since Wright's death.

It requires considerable

remedial work, some of which has already been done, to restore it to its former splendor.

After restoration, only spot

management should be needed. 1.

PATH ENTRANCE

The stone steps and a zone of about 5 feet on either side should be raked of

~eaves

and debris each spring.

The four shou~d

signaling white birches at the entrance are now gone and

be replanted whlle selected hemlock should be cut down on either side of the path on the lower side to proviae a view of a mu~ti-stemmed

oak on the upper side and to allow enough light

for replanted white birches to grow. 2.

THE TRAIL

The trail should be raked of leaves and debris, and any fallen branches removed and hidden beyond sight in the woods.

On

the initial piece of trail which leads to the western overlook, there are many opportunities for management and enrichment of the trail experience.

For example, just before the large

boulders, there is a sizeable clump of black birch in a gap among the hemlocks at the edge of the trail.

These birches

should be "revealed", i.e., the profusion of obscuring vegetation around

th~\

should be removed and the birch clump thinned to

accentuate the sense of a thicket of poles. 3.

THE WESTERN OVERWOK

The clearing in front of the sculptural qroup of huge boulders should be maintained. or tables is needed.

No enrichment of sculpture, benches, The visitor is asked to see the rocks as

123


sculpture and to climb on them and use them as benches.

The

hemlock in the cleft between the rocks should have dead or damaged branches removed.

The entire area around the rocks

should be raked, and fallen branches and debris removed. Framed by the rocks there is a view of the Hudson River.

This

view has been recently recut under the supervision of Joe Chapman who should detail its essentials. 4.

THE BOWL

The floor of this bowl and the foreground of the space are seen by the visitor from the gateway of huge boulders at the western overlook.

The vegetation within the bowl should be

only deciduous forest shrubs of a low or medium height from a mesic environment, such as arrowwood and mapleleaf viburnum. Any other plant form, such as understory or canopy trees, tall herbaceous plants, etc., should be removed.

In the background

ringing the upper slope of the bowl, only understory trees should be seen, and all other forest layers except the ground layer should be removed. 5.

THE BOULDER AMPHITHEATER

In this area the plants of the forest floor, from wildflowers to woody vines, are displayed.

Currently the drifts of

woodland asters and goldenrods have disappeared and they should be replanted in appropriate clearings in front of the boulders.

Bittersweet, woodbine, and virgin's bower should

drape over the rocks without obscuring them and should be replanted if necessary.

In front of the rocks there should

be only understory of sassafras and dogwood.

Prune existing

sassafras and dogwood and leave the sassafras seedlings at the sides of the amphitheater.

Remove all tree and shrub

seedlings and other understory, such as birch. 6.

HUDSON RIVER VIEW

The path through the forest at the edge of the depression which has the swamp at its center has disappeared and should be recut.

124


Along this path there is a view of Bear Mountain which is now completely obscured and should be reopened under the supervision of Joe Chapman who should detail its essentials. 7.

SWAMP

Although a feature on the property since the house was built, Wright was still designing and planting this swamp at the time of his death.

Today, although the paths were once completely

designed and realized, much of their length is overgrown and vistas have filled in.

The trees and shrubs around the swamp

are too thin to create any impact, and extensive planting is needed.

The herbaceous material is rank and needs management

to be attractive and comprehensible, and all the planting should reflect the zoned structure of a natural wetland. Briars, black locusts, and ailanthus should be removed from this area.

They are representative of disturbance rather

than wetland vegetation.

The pool should probably be considered

a 'wet meadow' as it rarely holds water in summer.

There

might be a spring trail around the pool used early in the season when there is water and a low trail through the meadow in the fall when the pool is dry. 8.

PATH TO PARKING WT

This path is currently too wide and has been highly disturbed by recent construction where it enters the parking lot.

Signs

of disturbance should be eliminated and the path narrowed by removing construction debris and allowing it to grow in. Disturbance species, such as barberry, should be removed.

125


IIIB.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WINTER' PATH AND MORNING WALK

DESCRIPTION

In "A Garden of Woodland Paths", Wright gives the following description of the design of this path: "Another of my paths doubles as the 1'10rning Walk and the p

Winter Walk.

.

The direction of the path is: entirely eastward

so that in any season that you walk up this hill before noon, the sun will be shining at you through the needles of the hemlock, and will be strong 011 the tops of the large trees, where the birds fly and the squirrels leap. "The path follows an old path which a hundred years ago was used for sleds to bring cordwood down the hill.

I found that

along both sides of it small hemlocks were predominant. Twenty-five years ago I started cutting out almost all of the deciduous trees edging the path.

Now I thin. the hemlocks

to eliminate the scrawny ones and to encourage the strong ones. It has gradually developed into a majestic aIle of these dark evergreens. "Most of this path is at the base of two ernban}<Jnents so that there is always a deep deposit of leaves underfoot -- soft and quiet for walklng.

At the beglnning of the path, the

sides are so high that one has a worm's eye view of the trees from both sides.

As you ascend the hill, the sides diminish

so that they become eye level and you look at the base of the trees in the woods. leave untouched.

You pass through a forest which I purposely

It is rather like looking at the bottom of

the sea through a glass window. cruelty of the forest.

Here you witness the dramatic

The corpses of fallen trees are being

devoured by decay or are caught in the arms of younger ones. Roots attack the boulders.

Often you hear the flutter of the

wings of partridge and see them flying away deep into the woods.

In the early summer many Indian pipes push their way

126


through the leaves of this path and after every rain there is a great crop of mushrooms. "Lest the path become a monotonous aIle, I have cut two openings.

The first opening shows a bend in the brook where

the ferns sweep knee deep down to the water. "At the next bend in the path, I have widened it to encourage the natural carpet of white violets that grow here and to reveal a small waterfall, a large area of flat rock; and a small clear, clean pool just large enough for one person to bathe in.

:P.

This opening is an ideal setting for a picnic.

eIn later years Wright called this area Tigiana.)

Overhead

I have cut a large grapevine so that you,can grab it and swing out over the

brook~

In the next portion I have removed

the hemlocks to reveal on both sides my tallest trees, which tower eighty feet. birds.

This is the best place to see and hear the

Here we have on three occasions found the skeletons of

deer in the snow and picked up the tail feathers of the vultures who had eaten the flesh from the bones. "Next I bent the path to run close to the brook and I have cleared out the fallen trees to show the great expanse of the giant leaved skunk cabbage.

eIn later years Wright called

this area Tiorundil.l

-

"The path again plunges -into a hemlock tunnel which curves a,,,ay from the brook and then back again at the crossing made by four large boulders moved here for stepping stones. the water rushes past between

In wet weather

th~~.

"On the other side is the goal of this path:

a grove of hemlocks,

all the same size, stretches along a narrow strip of the bank on the other side of the brook.

In back of the brook, a huge

stone, twenty-five feet high, forms a long wall,

The grove

of hemlocks continues for about 150 feet along this magnificent cliff.

You can walk

alo~g

under the hemlocks looking up and

admiring the contours ana the rich pattern ot the lichen of this giant stone.

At the end of the grove, one can recross the

brook at a lower point and return to the hemlock tunnel.

* Russel

"*

Wright, "A Garden of Woodland Paths", manuscript.

127


The hemlock corridor on the Winter Path 1~


o

r-rUDY OF THE WI NTER PATH JUNCTIONS I

~D SPECIAL EVENTS.

.

129


IIIB.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WINTER PATH AND MORNING WALK

Map 1 of 4

1. 2.

WINTER PATH ENTRY HEMLOCK', CORRIDOR

130


IIIB.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WINTER PATH AND MORNING WALK

Map 2 of 4

2. 3.

HEMLOCK CORRIDOR THE DECIDUOUS FOREST ON THE LOWER SIDE OF THE PATH

4. 5. 6.

FERN STEPS ENTRANCE TO TIGIANA TIGIANA


IIIB.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WINTER PATH AND MORNING WALK

Map 3 of 4

6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

TIGIANA TIORUNDA MARGARET r S WATERFALL THE ISLAND IN THE PATH THE CORDUROY ROAD

132


IIIB.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WINTER PATH AND MORNING WALK

Map 4 of 4

9. 10. 11 . 12.

THE ISLAND IN THE PATH THE CORDUROY ROAD STREAM STEPPING STONES CLIFF WALK

133


III!!.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WINTER PATH AND MORNING WALK

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES

1.

WINTER PATH ENTRY

Prune exdsting understory to arch over the path entrance. Remove extraneous tree seedlings and saplings to direct the eye to the gateway formed by two large boulders. 2.

HEMLOCK CORRIDOR

Rake all'litter and debris from the trail and the adjacent banks, leaving a corridor of fallen leaves.

The leaf channels

formed in the path after heavy rains should be raked out and extra leaves added to the trail and bank when bare spots appear.

Add leaves to a depth of no more than 3 inches.

occasionally clear areas of the bank of leaves and branches in places where cushion moss is growing, especially around the trunks of the large hemlocks.

It is particularly important

here to clear the special places such as the tiny events made by stepping stones and water diversions.

Root out any

deciduous tree seedlings or saplings edging the path and thin out any scrawny hemlocks to eliminate competition and provide space to encourage the stronger trees in this majestic aIle of hemlocks. 3.

THE DECIDUOUS FOREST ON THE WWER SIDE OF THE PATH -..c

As the banks diminish along the hemlock corridor, Wright wanted to lessen the monotony of the path corridor by giving the walker some significant views out into the adjacent woods and down to the stream.

Although he wanted this piece of

forest to remain essentially unmanaged in order to contrast with the seemingly unchanging hemlocks (so that the walker would be aware of "dramatic cruelty" of the untouched forest, in the process of decay and renewal),

'windows'

s~ould

be kept

open along. the pathway where especially dramatic scenes can be

134


witnessed and a small vista cut through the forest to reveal the sharp bend in the ·stream.

At the stream, the view should

terminate in a great furry swath of ferns.

Within the forest,

in areas visible from the path, remove most blowdowns from hurricanes or winter storms, leaving only a few of the most dramatic ones. 4.

FERN STEPS

Wright wanted the

for~st

sensual experience.

~he

to be appreciated as a tactile and ferns

~t

brush the ankles of tne walker.

the base of the steps should

Currently, there are very

few ferns left and with increased pUblic use, small fragile events such as these will have to be restored on an annual or biannual basis.

New ferns of medium height and soft

foliage llady fern, male fern, New York fern, etc.) should be used to replace the missing ferns.

Large coarse ferns,

such as cinnamon or ostrich fern, are not appropriate.

These

ferns should be dug from the property or ordered from a wholesale supplier.

They should be planted in soft dense

clumps grouped around the stones.

During the last few years

this area has become increasingly damp and there is a need for more stepping stones at the head of the path.

New stepping

stones should be installed under the supervision of Baldev Raju and should follow: the directions for the placement of stones given in the management guidelines for the lower quarry path (see IC.B.). new stones.

New ferns Should be planted alongside of these In the proposed brochure which will describe

•I

Wright's trails, visitors should be told to walk on the stepping stones.

Currently many people do not realize that the stones

are there to be walked on and that this is an important experience which 'will change their way of walking and seeing. 5.

ENTRANCE TO TIGIANA

At the rocks before Tigiana, the grove of moosewood maples and large clumps of cinnamon fern could be brought out with minimal weeding and pruning.

Exits and entrances along the trails are

critical management areas and should always be given attention so that the events here can be seen in sharp focus.

135


6.

TIGIANA

This area was highly disturbed when the hurricane of 1976 blew down a number of very large tulip poplars.

Vines,

briars, and other invasive woody plants have colonized the large gap that was left.

As a result, this area needs a

good deal of cleaning up.

New tulip poplar saplings now

growing up in this area should be encouraged, and their tall columnar qualities should be emphasized by removing other woody species.

-,

Debris, broken branches, large cut-up logs

should eventually be removed from this critical nexus of paths. streamside vegetation should be pruned to give visitors a view of the riffles and tiny pool as the path comes to the stream. 7.

TIORUNDA

A broad bank of the stream has been cleared here to reveal an expanse of skunk cabbage and to encourage wet wildflowers and ferns.

The wildflowers Wright planted have not taken hold and

there are only a few scattered ferns.

This area requires

herbaceous enrichment and, following in Wright's footsteps, experiments should be tried.

A few witchhazel and spicebush

have been planted here but as single specimens they make little impact on the design.

Each single plant should be

enlarged with additions of three to five new shrubs to form a series of clumps and groves.

Existing specimens should be

pruned to dramatize their characteristic shape and to remove dead wood.

Select about six to eight well distributed sprouts

on the large witchhazels and chop the rest of the shrub down and allow it to regrow.

Lastly, within the stream itself, most

of the debris dams should be removed, leaving only one particularly dramatic one. 8.

MARGARET'S WATERFALL

The uprooted and bent-over hemlock should be removed here to allow the waterfall to be seen from

the~

path.

Encourage small

moosewood seedlings opposite the stream. entrance to eventually form a grove here.

136


9.

THE ISLAND IN THE 路PATH

Bounded by the stream on one side and a small granite cliff on the other, there is a small island in the path just before the corduroy road.

The cliff face should be cleared of woody

plants, leaving ferns and wildflowers in pockets within the rock.

Trees and shrubs on the island should be pruned,

eliminating the weak and scrawny ones.

The upper path should

be defined by removing branches and debris and placing leaves to create a distinct path surface.

Prune the large hemlock

:I'l

at the end of the island to allow people to pass under it. 10.

THE CORDUROY ROAD

Recently replaced, this piece of path which consists of a ribbon of logs over a damp area will have to be replaced again in another few years.

Ideally white cedar, which is

somewhat rot resistant, should be used, but Wright used hemlock from the property.

The corduroy road is there not

only to keep the walker from getting his feet damp but also to focus attention on the fact that this is a wet place on the path. 11 .

STREAM STEPPING STONES

These stepping stones should be monitored and , if seen to be G

loose, should be carefully repositioned and made secure. Like all special events; this area should be cleared of broken branches and debris.

The maidenhair ferns beside the

rocks are found nowhere else on the property and additional plantings should be made to create a lush group on either side of the last stepping stone.

Weed ferns to remove any woody

plants coming in. 12.

CLIFF WALK

Prune spicebush arching over the entrance to the place where the Winter Path travels along the cliff.

This path is currently

grown over and should be; carefully reopened following its old alignment of which there are still traces.

137


13.

ROCK CLIFF

No trees or shrubs should be allowed to grow on the

roc~

face

or in front of it which would obscure the drama of the sheer cliff.

Clear rock face of debris and fallen branches as well.

The existing hemlocks beyond the stepping stones at the', beginning of the cliff walk should be limbed up to allow the walker to see under them through to this grey wall ahead with its striking display of lichens.

â&#x20AC;˘

1.56


IIIC.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WHITE PINE PATH

DESCRIPTION

The White Pine Path is primarily an exploration of the little ravines within the hillside.

We enter the path at the stream

and come up the cliff where we can stand and look down into the ravine below.

The visitor is led along the edge of the l't-

cliff where different views of the stream present themselves. Lastly, we plunge down between the rocks into a little stream valley where we come face to face with the water.

We come

out through the graveyard of great trees and again get a special view into a steep little ravine.

We are brought

back to the hillside where the entrance to the Deer Pool Path invites us into the ravine to participate in a special event there. A secondary theme and a spectacular event along this trail involves the white pine, for which this path was named.

A

huge tree of enormous girth, probably 150 to 200 years old, survived the successive harvesting of this forest.

This

white pine is something of an anomaly in this forest.

Possibly

rJ

it got its start in a sizeable gap, caused by a hurricane or a fire, and later was passed over by those who exploited the forest for trÂŁ last 150 years. hurricane of 1976.

It was blown down by the

To be blown down by a hurricane is a

common fate of ancient white pines which stand above the forests in New England as 'super canopies'. Wright ÂŁ.ound this white pine very early in his explorations of the

p~operty.

Gradually, he came to identify with i t and

to feel the tree in some way represented him. than a year after the tree fell.

He died less

After the hurricane, wri9ht

left his huge white pine lying on the trail with a number of other large trees that were also blown down: the "cruelity" of na,ture.

the evidence of

Unlike the Wickopee Trail, where

139


a fallen tree has been shaped to create a step, Wright wanted us to recognize these majestic fallen trees; so we are forced to scramble over them, crawl under them or walk alongside of them.


IIIC.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WHITE PINE PATH

Map 1 of 3

1.

2.

ENTRANCE CLIFF 'WALK

141


IIIC.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WHITE PINE PATH

Map 2 of 3

3. 4. -5.

END OF CLIFF MOSS PATCH HEMWCK GATEWAY AND DESCENT TO THE STREAM

142


IIIC.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WHITE PINE PATH

Map 3 of 3

6. 7. 8. 9.

MOSSY ROCK GRAVEYARD OF GREAT TREES TRIPLE-TRUNK TULIP POPLAR HILL ASCENT


IIIC.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WHITE PINE PATH

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1.

ENTRANCE

Clear away brush and small hemlocks. 2.

CLIFF WALK

Prune dead branches and remove hemlock saplings at the edge of the cliff to create views into the cool; dark ravine below through a lace curtain of trunks. Where the path joins the cliff edge, cut out all trees to create a qramatic window to the brook. 3.

END OF CLIFF

After the drama and magic of the cliff walk, the path currently collapses.

This section of the path should be

managed as a mature hemlock forest by clearing out dead trees and branches and opening up a view to the rock face above the path. 4.

MOSS PATCH

Clear vegetation here to keep a small hole in the forest and encourage this jewel-like patch of moss to 路spread. 5.

HEMLOCK GATEWAY AND DESCENT TO THE STRF;AM

Reveal view of the stream by clearing unnecessary trees. 6.

MOSSY ROCK

Limb up fallen hemlock to reveal stream corridor. 7.

GRAVEYARD OF GREAT TREES

Birch seedlings growing in dead trunk should be snipped off when they get too big.

144


8.

TRIPLE-TRUNK TULIP POPLAR

Remove debris and dead branches from clearing around tulip poplar to clearly display it. 9.

HILL ASCENT

Open view into the ravine to make an adventurous path down to the stream.

145


II IV.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

DEER POOL PA TH

DESCRIJ?TION

The goaJ. 0"ÂŁ this path is the deer pool.

Less made than found,

the deer pool is "a place of secret, silent comings and goings"*

~

small pool within a steep stream dammed by a

huge smooth boulder, the deer pool is one of the sites at Manitoga where one is most likely to see wildlife in the landscape.

Even if the visitor does not catch a glimpse

of deer or racoon, there are usually fresh tracks on the muddy bank.

The visitor is made aware of the animals of the '

forest, which are continuously present, but move about and are not continuously seen.

â&#x20AC;˘

*MarleyThomas, "Manitoga:

preliminary Master Plan"! man\J:script.

146


IIID.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

1. 2. 3.

DEER POOL PATH

ENTRANCE TO THE DEER POOL RAVINE DEER POOL

147 .


IIID.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

DEER POOL PATH

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1â&#x20AC;˘

ENTRANCE TO THE DEER POOL

The entrance to the deer pool brings one beneath the extended branches of the striped maple.

This is a particularly dramatic

angle from which one can see and appreciate the ripening fruit in August and September. 2.

-

RAVINE

A major principle in managing the transitional areas is to open views and focus attention on special features of the site.

This little ravine is characteristic and needs exactly

this sort of work:

clearing a view down the stream, focusing

on special groupings of plants along the stream, etc. 3.

DEER POOL

The magical quality of this place was emphasized by Wright when he hired a flute player dressed as Pan to surprise visitors here with his piping.

Perhaps an occasional

Pan should be included in future festivities.

n~nph

or piping

Perhaps simply

a carved wooden cup to drink out of, hung on a nearby tree, would be enough to invite one to pause and refresh oneself. The pool, rocks, and the upper slopes should be kept clear of debris and fallen branches to heighten the pool setting.

148


IIIE.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

TRAIL TO LOST POND

DESCRIPTION

Beyond the Winter path, the Trail to Lost Pond begins.

It is

the trail out into the wilder places on the property which the visitor can now experience with a newly heightened perception.

From the great cliff at the end of the Winter :Ill

Path, the Trail to Lost Pond is a long strenuous climb up a steep hill.

As we begin this climb, we look down into the

valley of a small stream and up into the only beech forest on the site.

The walker will move away from this gentler,

mesic hillside with a broader braiding stream and move through a continuous dark corridor of hemlocks with dense tunnels of laurels, up to a dry rocky hillside.

A small

group of hemlocks has been left in the middle of the pathway to serve as handholds for the ascent.

At a break

in the hillside, a second overlook is reached and we are invited to pause and rest on a little mossy plateau adjacent to the path.

This is the second 'window' on this walk.

This time the vista is outward over the Hudson River Valley and the mountains beyond.

Like Wright's other 'osios', we a feeling of

have a sense of "an extended perspective being on top of the world."*

The path now dips to a little

stream at the bottom of a steep, rocky hill.

wright had

very specific ideas on how each particular place should be exp~rienced

sensually.

At Lost Pond, he wanted the visitor

to participate in the discovery of a lost, secret place.

To

this end, the cleared and visible pathway ends at this stream app~oximately

300 yards before the pond itself.

The visitor

is asked to enjoy the adventure of finding Lost Pond for himself.

Uncertainty and self-discovery are important aspects

of the experience.

*Marley Thomas, "Manitoga:

preliminary ,Master Plan", manuscript.

149


Arrival at Lost Pond evokes the sense of coming upon an undisturbed, primeval place, despite the fact that this is not actually the case. small

gra~ite

development.

The pond occurs within an unusually

quarry which was abandoned early in its This second critical quarry on the property

should be seen in contrast to the quarry and pond at Dragon Rock.

This is a quarry healed by nature, not by Wright, which

has now acquired all the qualities of a natural landscape. Wright saw that in this place, disturbed long ago, time has made it feel wild and special again.

This is a place Wright

wanted the visitor to find for himself. No

interv~ntion

and no path complete the walker's journey to

the wild world.

This is a journey out from quarry to quarry

from the highly designed quarry at Dragon Rock, where every step and view was manipulated to appear to be completely reclaimed'by the wilderness, to Lost Pond, a place where we are not aware of any intervention at all; although, in fact, little clearings have been made for us to come to.

The

grandest vista on the site and the one from its highest point has been cut here.

This 'osio' not only gives one a view

across the Hudson Valley, but also "all the way up the river through a break in the mountains and looks like a perfect misty monumental painting by one of the Hudson River painters."*

*Marley Thomas, "Manitoga:

Preliminary Master Plan", manuscript.

150


Hemlock trunks along the Trail to Lost Pond serve as handholds for the walker.

151


j

152


IIIE.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

TRAIL TO LOST POND

Map 1 of 8

\

~j i

1. 2. 3. 4•

ENTRANCE WINDOW TO STREAM AND BEECH SLOPE TRAIL HEMLOCK HANDHOLDS

154


IIIE.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

TRAIL TO LOST POND

Map 2 of 8

,

_.- ... -

.~

....

~ '~

._. .

.\ .

.,~-,

,

.

~

.

/.--@

'"

3.

5. 6. 7.

TRAIL THE DANCING LAURELS LAUREL TUNNEL HUDSON VIEvl


III'E.

THE TRANSITIONAL .'lJ.REAS:

TRAIL TO LOST POND

Map 3 of 8

\.

'~-

! I

----J, I

I j

3.

TRAIL

156

I


IIIE.

THE

'n~NSITIONAL TLV>

AREAS:

TRAIL TO LOST POND

Map 4 of 8

-----

T

3.

TRAIL 1:57


IIIE.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

TRAIL TO LOST POND

Map 5 of 8

3. 8. $.

TRAIL THE STREAM HILL APPROACH ~tv~~~

156


IIIE.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

TRAIL TO LOST POND

Map 6 of 8

10.

HILL APPROACH

159


IIIE.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

TRAIL TO LOST POND

Map 路7 of 8

10.

HILL APPROACH

160


IIIE.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

TRAIL TO LOST POND

Map 8 of 8

j

j ;.

11 . 12. 13. 14.

SEDGE BEACH LOST POND OVERLOOK SCREE EDGE POND

161


jIIE.

THIf TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

TRAIL TO WST POND

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES

1..

ENTRANCE

Remove wind-blown hemlocks. 2.

WINDOW TO STREAM AND BEECH SWPE p

prun~ up spicebushes in the little hollow to create a special

little grove.

Clear away other vegetation where needed so

braided channels of the stream can be seen.

Manage beech

hillside to be a solid beech forest. 3.

TRAIL

Rake trail in spring to remove litter, debris and fallen branches.

Rake duff where clumped into piles by heavy

downpours. 4.

HEMLOCK HANDHOLDS

Hemlocks were left purposefully in the trail to act as handholds but they are not doing well, as the canopy closes frrnn; the side. fore~t

5.

Srnne hemlocks should be removed from the

at the side

o~

the path to bring in more light.

.

THE DANCING LAURELS

These leggy laurels at the side of the path are no longer picturesque, as the canopy closes and less light is

ava~lable.

Prune dead wood from these laurels and open the canopy by removing adjacent hemlocks. 6.

LAUREL TUNNEL

Remoye dead laurels. RemOve some

Prune and fertilize remaining ones.

hemlocks.~oirom ,>

the canopy to let in more light. .

Remove debris and dead branches from sides of path.

162

,


7â&#x20AC;˘

HUDSON VIEW

Rake mossy plateau, remove debris and fallen branches, and prune dead wood from laurels and surrounding trees.

This view was

recently cut under the supervision of Joe Chapman, who should set down his directions.

In general, the new school building

is to be obscured by the hemlocks and the view re-angled up the river. 8.

THE STREAM

At the stream, the walker leaves the hemlock forest and the forest becomes deciduous.

This deciduous quality could be

emphasized by removing the young hemlocks now seeding in.

A

couple of well placed stones are needed to cross the stream, but not as formal stepping stones.

The spicebush, ferns, and

yellow birch which callout the little ravine should be encouraged here and other species removed.

There is a

magnificent little ravine up the hill in which the stream is flowing. 9.

The view up this ravine could be opened up.

ENTRANCE TO HILL APPRO]!CH

A moosewood archway signals the end of the pathway.

~11ese

moosewoods should be pruned and fertilized to keep them elegant and full. 10.

HILL APPROACH

Since Manitoga has become public and greater numbers of people use the trails, a distinct track has been worn up this last' hill.

Trail markers have also been added to enable

visitors to find thei.r way. of losing visitors in a

Despite the potential difficulty

pub~ic

place, effort should be made

to retain the experience as intended.

The trail markers

should be removed and effor~s made to obliterate a beaten pathway by raking leaves over the track and moving stones onto it.

Visitors could be alerted by means of a self-guiding

brochure that they are expected to find the pond on their own.

163


11 â&#x20AC;˘

SEDGE BEACH

Although Lost Pond creates the illusion of a lost, undisturbed landscape, it is in fact the site of a small granite quarry and would gradually be completely enclosed by forest.

The

small sedgy beach on the west side of the pond should be kept open.

The young tree and shrub saplings currently closing

this gap should be cleared and the grape vine which is beginning to invade the sedges should be kept back to the rocky scree. 12.

J/*.

LOST POND OVERWOK

Like all of Wright's cut vistas, the approach is to make what is created look as natural as window.

possib~e

and not like a picture

The cut should be uneven with branches from both

sides of the opening hanging into the view.

At this overlook,

storm King Mountain and a bit of the Hudson River are the focal point of the vista. 13.

SCREE EDGE

Many serendipitous events are found at Lost Pond, such as the grape vine and the woodbine growing over the scree on the western side of the pond or the clump of sedges at the edge of the little beach.

When recognized, these events should be

preserved and enhanced 14.

w~th

minimal weeding.

POND PATH

presently, a partial path exists around the pond itself.

It

requires only the most minimal clearing so that it can be navigated.

It should be treated as an adventure path:

not

very easy to find and not very easy to travel.

164


IIIF.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

ZIGZAG TRAIL, THE RETURN FROM LOST POND

DESCRIPTION

One returns from Lost Pond on a path which zigzags back and forth down the steep rocky mountainside.

This path gives the

visitor a direct experience of the physiography of Manitoga;

..

it was designed as a giant stairway with steep descents . leading

~o

hillside.

landings on little terraces tucked into the Wright has engineered our movement to hurry us

down steep rocky steps with sharp switch-backs, and then to invite us to pause for breath at little terraces along the hillside.

Here the walker finds an opening in the forest

which features a distinct layer of the surrounding plant community, such as the dogwood understory or the laurel and blueberry shrub layer.

In addition, it is a trail to

experience topography, forms, textures, colors, scents, and The third terrace down is called the Sleeping Buddha

flavors~

Terrace, after the long horizongal rock lying against the hillside which looks like the sleeping Buddha in a Cambodian temple.

rrom here the trail descends to the Quadruple Oak

Room, where two huge multistemmed oaks face each other in an open bowf.

165


The Quadruple Oak Room on the Zigzag Trail 1~


IIIF.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

ZIGZAG TRAIL, THE RETURN FROM LOST POND

Map 1 of 5

J

1. 2. 3.

PATH ENTRY THE SWITCH-BACKS THE LITTLE TERRACES

167


IIIF.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

ZIGZAG TRAIL, THE RETURN FROM LOST POND

Map 2 of 5

2. 3.

THE SWITCH-BACKS THE LITTLE TERRACES

168


IIIF.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

ZIGZAG TRAIL, THE RETURN FROM LOST POND

Map 3 of 5

2. 3.

THE SWITCH-BACKS THE LITTLE TERRACES

169


IIIF.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

ZIGZAG TRAIL, THE RETURN FROM LOST POND

Map 4 of 5

.1

)

I

2. 4. 5.

THE SWITCH-BACKS UNDERSTORY ROOM THE QUADRUPLE OAK ROOM

170


1 .. IIIF.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

ZIGZAG TRAIL, THE RETURN FROM LOST POND

Map 5 of 5

5.

THE QUADRUPLE OAK ROOM

111


IIIF.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

ZIGZAG TRAIL, THE RETURN FROM LOST POND

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES

This trail was made in Wright's last years and was still quite raw when he died.

Although no longer raw, it lacks the

refinement of the earlier trail designs and requires clarification and enrichment 1.

to~bring

it to full potential.

PATH ENTRY

Unlike Wright's earlier designs, no special events mark the beginning of the Zigzag Trail as it leaves Lost Pond.

What

i.s needed here is careful observation and creative vision to determine the potential site feature, consistent with the pat~

theme, that could be called out to help define the

path entry. 2.

THE SWITCH-BACKS

These steep steps require occasional resetting.

All that has

been said elsewhere about stone steps applies here (see Ie.B) . Erosion here continues to be a major problem. gutters similar to those' could be built here.

const~.lcted

Diversion

on the Wint.er Path

Baldev Raju, who built both these steps

and the diversion channels on the other paths, should be consulted for this work. 3.

TH$ LI,TTLE TERRACES ,

There are .,three little terraces.

The first features low bush

blueberry; the second, mountain laurel; and the third -- the Sleeping Buddha Terrace -- dogwoods.

Wright cleared these

terraces of all plants except those he wanted to display; he then pruned whatever remained and waited until they would mUltiply and become a thick and lush mass.

After many summers

of drought; which inhibited growth and reproduction, the

,. 172


laurel and blueberry have begun to create the desired effect, although the masses remain amorphous in form.

At each terrage

area plants not featured should be removed and the groups of plants on display should be given shape through the removal of some plants and the addition of others.

At the Sleeping

Buddha Terrace, many of the dogwoods have died and should be replaced by

blackha,~

(Viburnum prunifolium), an excellent

native understory tree that is both shade and drought resistant. Currently, a rich shrub layer of mapleleaf viburnum is developing and should be encouraged.

In general, the plant

themes are now established on these little terraces, but they need development and amplification.

Joe Chapman, Martin

Jarsky, and Andropogon Associates should be consulted to advise on this work.

Lastly, much damage was done on these

open plateaus by the last hurricane; broken and blown-over trees 4.

sl~uld

be

pr~ned

or removed.

UNDERSTORY ROOM

Between the Sleeping Buddha Terrace and the Quadruple Oak Room is a large area of understory trees, mostly dogwood and sassafras.

Some of the large existing canopy of oaks and

maples should be removed and young tree seedlings and saplings weeded out to allow the understory to develop more fully. 5.

THE QU1WRUPLE OAK ROOM

,. This room has the potential to be one of the most dramatic and pleasant little openings on the trail.

At pr.esent, the

edges are undefined, and the forest floor. is species poor and without any particularly attractive woodland wildflowers. Large' herbaceous masses of wildflowers or ferns might be planted behind each of the two multistemmed oaks, so that these masses could be seen between the trunks. the

bowl~shaped

To emphasize

terrace in which these oaks sit, dogwoods

and large viburnums, such as the blackhaw, should be added to the perimeter, particularly on the uphill side which is deciduous and disturbingly open.

The young red maples in

173


this area should be cut down to encourage resprouting as multistemmed clumps.

Patches of large, showy herbaceous

plants, such as snakeroot or woodland aster, should be planted below this ring of understory.

with weeding, these

patches should develop into broad swaths.

within the bowl,

small ferns and mapleleaf viburnum are currently growing abundantly.

Any tree or large

sh~ub

seedlings should be

removed to maintain this area as a low open center.

I,

114


IIIG.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

FERN MEADOW PATH

DESCRIPTION

This path is an extensive display of the wide variety of ferns on the property and introduces the visitor to another kind of forest opening.

Where the steeply sloping hillside

meets sefter rock, the grade becomes gentler and there are :places where springs occur or w~ere water seeps out of the 'rocks, creating damp depressions.

On the mucky soil, the

tree canopy is thinner and a rich groundlayer, particularly ferns, carpets the ground.

The path leads the visitor from

the Four Corners along a swale in the hillside to the climax in a large cinnamon fern meadow.

Wright has emphasized the

soft lush ground by removing the shrub layer.

175


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176


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s 0

'd "J

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s:::

!-t

OJ

~

ClJ

.c: {.J U)

>.:

..., 0

OJ

S

a

'd

ru

OJ ~

s:::

!-t (jJ

~

..., OJ ';

+J r:::

OJ

(J

0,l

.c: E-i

177

11

,l~

I.

.

i'l • "


I

L

i'

f

.

PLAN SHOWING THE PROPOSED DESIGN STRUCTURE OF THE SECONDARY FERN

MEADOWS. Tall shrubs'such as sp1cebush should be left In groves, with the ferns encouraged to carpet the floor by.removlng all ralf'lk herbaceo~s plants, low shrubs and tree seed! 1ngs.

116

I


IIIG.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

FERN MEADOW PATH

Map 1 of 2

1• 2. 3. 4• 5.

EXIT FROM FOUR CORNERS ROCKY PATH AUXILIARY FERN MEADOWS SPICEBUSH GROVE CENTRAL FERN MEADOW

179


TIIG.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

FERN MEADOW PATH

Map 2 of 2

180


l-IIG.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS':

FERN MEADOW PATH

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1 â&#x20AC;˘

EXIT FROM FOUR CORNERS

The ferns at this exit should be encouraged to spread through weeding 'and new ferns planted if necessary. 2.

ROCKY PATH

Where abandoned paths make the main route unclear, obscure the old path entrances with old stumps, large rocks, or appropriate vegetation. 3.

AUXILTARY FERN MEr'lDOf'/S

In these extensive fern meadows, remove any tree seedlings and all shrubs, but leave the understory to provide a light shade foT. the ferns. among the ferns.

Also, remove all broken branches from

Work should be done only in t.he winter

,,:hen the ferns are dormant.

Keep the hemlocks to the edges

of these meadows to reinforce the sense of space. 4.

SPICEBUSH GROVE

Prune the spicebushes to

~aphasize

their arching shape and

eliminate dead wood. 5.

CENTP.AL FERN MEADOr.; d'

Remove all understory and shrub seedlings from the meadm,', but encourage understory and shr.ubs at meadow edges.

If the

canopy appears to be too heavy, remove tree seedlings, saplings, and an occasional small canopy tree to decrease the amount of shade.

Understory should be left at the

edges to emphasize the sense of this room.

Allow only the

narrowest single file pathway to develop through the ferns, and encourage visitors not to go off the path and trample the ferns.

181


IIIH.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WICKOPEE TRAIL

DESCRIPTION

The Wickopee Trail is a connecting trail from Four Corners to Tigiana, being a short journey from the dry hillside to the lush lowland cOITUUunity adjacent to the stream. The trail moves through a series of rich fern and wildflower 1>

displays, and crosses a large windthrown tree ',o,lnose great fan of roots supports a tiny meadow of hay-scented ferns.

The

climax of the trail is the descent to the stream and its crossing on a narrow plank bridge.

This bridge, one of the

most simple and elegant that Wright designed, puts us out above the stream without protection.

The stream here is at

its most elaborate and beautiful, descending in a series of pools and waterfalls, with little islands formed where tl1e stream braids.

162


IIIH.

THE TRANSIT1-ONAL AREAS:

WICKOPEE TRAIL

Map 1 of 2

2. 3. 4. 5.

WINDTHROW STEPPING STONES LITTLE FERN MEADOW PLANK BRIDGE AREA

163


IIIH.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WICKOPEE TRAIL

Map 2 of 2

1• 2. 3.

FOUR CORNERS WINDTHROW STEPPING STONES

164


IIIH.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

WICKOPEE TRAIL

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1 •

FOUR CORNERS

Enrichment of the trail entrance, \'1ith ferns and wildflowers, would help to callout the theme of this trail. 2.

WINDTHROW

p.

Remove fallen branches and debris around this area. die on

~1ese

If ferns

roots, they should be replanted for display,

along with wildflowers which

characteri~tically colonize

",·indthrows •

.,

oJ •

STEPPING STONES

General stepping stone maintenance. 4.

LITTLE FERN MEADOW

Weed out all woody seedlings here.

This meadow could be

enriched with wildflowers, such as the woodland goldenrods and Lowry's aster already coming in. J.

PLANK BRIDGE AREA

Clear away branches to open ap the view coming oft the bridge and remove debris to reveal the roots of trees adjacent to the stream.

185

. ,.


III.I.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

KILLALEMY' TRAIL

DESCRIPTION

The lower portion of this trail is highly dramatic and even theatrical.

The trail enters through thick hemlocks, where

one pushes aside the hemlock branches like a theater curtain. We go from an open space to an enclosed space; ,from light into darkness; from the cultivated

~adow

to rugged :wilderness;

from the horizontal world of the field to the steep forested hillside.

This entry is a prelude to the

comi~g

events:

striking rock formations and some of the largest hemlocks on the site.

As the visitor begins this trail, he feels he is

embarking on something grand:

the steep climb takes you

into another world, culminating in the Laurel Field and the magnificent view of the Hudson River. This is also the first forest trail currently taken by visitors to Manitoga and it is the introduction to the bones of this landscape.

The geology and physiography are displayed

along the steep hillsides and terraces.

The major events of

Wright's landscape -- Mary's Meadow, the Laurel Field, the Fern Meadow, and even Lost Pond -- all occur on these terraces, which are the flatter places on this mountainside property. At the lower portion of the trail, a large boulder marks the entrance to the Laurel pield. group of large boulders.

we

leave the laurel between a

This is one of many ways these

glacial erratics are brought to our attention and are contrasted to the outcropping rock.

As we were given a view' of the

Hudson River Valley when we entered the Laurel Field, upon leaving it we are given another look at the overall context of the site;

the Hudson River Valley and the Hudson Highlands

beyond. Entering the upper portion of the trail, we move from the heat and dryness of the Laurel Field to the cool, damp, deciduous

186


forest on a journey to the stream.

After the hemlocks of the

steep slope and the oaks and laurels of the hillside terraces, one enters the subtle, diverse" world of the deciduous forest on rich, moist soils.

The events alon9 the trail highlight

the range of species in all forest layers, from the mushrooms on the ground to the varied shrubs and understory.

The pinxter

flower (Azalea rudiflorum) is found only here on the property, and young chestnut sprouts are seen all along the trail. climax of this trail is the another of Russel Wright's

st~eam

spe~ial

The

which one crosses on bridges.

In this case,

the bridge is a simple plank structure, but the approach is unusual.

Rather than crossing; directly, one arrives at the

side of the bridge on a large threshold stone.

Like a

Japanese path, Wright orchestrates our views of the stream by bringing us to it obliquely, and then inviting us to look down the stream corridor before we cross the bridge to focus on the opposite bank.

161


'

. •

DETAI~ED

PLAN OF THE KllLAlEMY TRAIl. The wa,lker Is brought to the pJank bridge 06HQluHY-arnj fnvited to Jook down the stre~m corridor before crossing., --

c.~fr (J'V~ V t / . Ie n· ",...,.. .... k-lICt. VI~JIoJ ...rr,u;~

1~


III.I.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

KILLALEMY TRAIL

Map 1 of 3

1 • 2. 3.

ROCK STEPS AND EROSION CONTROL ROCK SCULPTURES THE BLOWDOWN AREA TO THE SOUTH OF THE TRAIL

169


III. I •

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

KILLALEMY TRAIL

Map 2 of 3

4.

UPPER KILLALEMY TRAIL - SPECIMEN GROVES

190


III. I.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

KILLALEMY TRAIL

Map 3 of 3

4. 5. 6.

7. 8.

UPPER KILLALEMY TRAIL - SPECIMEN GROVES THE BRIDGE APPROACH THE CLEARING AT THE BRIDGE THE STREAM CORRIDOR STAIRS TO THE WINTER PATH

191


III. I •

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

KILLALEMY TRAIL

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1•

ROCK STEPS AND EROSION CONTROL

There are a number of rock steps and rockworks for erosion control found along this trail. needed.

More erosion control may be

In constructing rockworks, follow the principles

Wright has used on the existing·work.

Use only large stones;

set them deeply into the soil; and abut all rocks carefully so that they look like an outcropping rock.

These steps and

erosion-control devices were built by Baldev Raju who should be consulted if repairs or additions are needed. 2.

ROCK SCULPTURES

One of a number of potential events along this trail should be made more visually accessible to the public by clearing away obscuring vegetation.

For example, a series of small

boulders on a rocky ledge illustrates the effect of weather in splitting up the rocks. 3.

THE BLOWDOWN AREA TO THE SOUTH OF THE TRAIL

Allow' trees' to ;lie<;rrow and remove vines where they are interf er ing with forest regeneration. 4.

UPPER KILLALEMY TRAIL

- SPECIMEN GROVES

All along this trail are events whiCh were never fully capitalized on.

The tiny grou,P of native azalea,: the chestnut sprouts', etc.

are examples.

A single specimen can;be

for the plant to be nottced a

strong~r

o~

interest, but often

statement ts needed.

To enhance the theme of the diversiti of the deciduous forest, more native azaleas sh<;mld be planted'.

Little groves of

moosewood maple, sassafras, and dogwood should be developed along the examples.

t~ail

where

the~e

are

curre~tly

only one or two

Small alcoves should be cut into the woods on the

192


upper side of the 'trail where the small nondescript openings already exist and there is a potential for views into lighted areas beyond the trail corridor.

canopy trees should be

selectively thinned along the trail to allow the understory and shrub layers to develop fully.

Hemlock seedlings should

be removed to keep this piece of forest deciduous. 5.

THE BRIDGE APPROACH

Clear away fallen branches and debris and remove hemlock saplings from among the rocks.

~Prune

spicebush to highlight

is overarching shape. 6.

THE CLEARING AT THE BRIDGE

This area was cleared and then replanted by Wright and Martin Jarsky.

The planting is still incomplete and Martin should

be consulted for additions. 7.

THE STREAM CORRIDOR

The stream corridor should be cleared back (particularly the briars) approximately 5' on either side to pull the.eye up the stream in a line of light as far as one can see to where the stream bends both upstream and downstream.

Leave the

large clumps of spicebush here which should be enhanced by pruning and encouraging new small clumps to develop.

Trees

which have blown down or have fallen over the stream should be removed. 8.

STAIRS TO THE wrNTER PATH

.

'

Clear steps as recommended for other paths.

within the niche

formed by two large ,boulders at the top of the steps is a typical place Wright would have used to display some attractive shrub or large clumP; of ferns.

193


IIIJ.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

LAUREL FIELD

DESCRIPTION,

The Laurel Field, set on a broad, gently sloping terrace at the edge of a steep cliff, is one of Wright's most spectacular landscapes.

On each flat terrace or small platform of the

hillside, Wright staged a major event.

These places invite

pause and leisurely exploration ",and are often the most remembered event of a journey.

The Laurel Field is the

climax ,or main feature for several paths:

the Spring Path,

the Kiilalemy Trail, and the Laurel Field Upper Trail.

Here

the theme is once again a gap in the forest, but not the hustle and bustle of an herbaceous meadow or a brushy logged-over site.

Here the landscape has the refined and

static quality of the thinly canopied shrub woodland growing where the soil is only inches thick over the bedrock. the field, a thick forest creates the sense of edge.

Beyond Wright

expanded and heightened this experience by further thinning the canopy to a few small scattered clumps of oaks and removed all the understory.

In response to the diminished competition

and increased light, the shrub layer has proliferated, creating a world of ericaceous shrubs. in

gre~t

laurel.;

Blueberry and huckleberry grow

mats under the oaks in the midst of large masses of Wright also planted laurel in a long

I

S I curve

snaking back up the hillside, drawing the eye deep into the forest interior, especially when in flower and in the winter landscape.

Wright also removed some laurels from the central

area, emphasizing the topography and creating an empty place, carpeted with cushion moss and fringed with huckleberry. This landscape also has the look of fire and it is possibl~

,

that it had been a wildfire site.

Wright may also have used

an occasional light prescribed burn to maintain the crisp quality of this landscape and retard the development of brush.

194


This landscape is also one of stone experienced both as bedrock and as glacial erratics that have rolled down the hillside. In the Laurel Field one can see and feel the big boulders lying about in the landscape.

The exit from the Laurel Field

is between a group of these large boulders.

Wright again

focuses our attention on the rock because the trail is pinched here and we brush the stones as we walk between them.

Turning

back, we see between the rocks a glimpse of the Hudson River.

195


The LauTel Field

J95


IIIJ.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

LAUREL FIELD

Map 1 of 2

. I

1 . 2. 3.

THE LAUREL FIELD HUDSON RIVER VIEW BOULDER GATEPvAY

197


IIIJ.

:THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

LAUREL FIELD

Map 2 of 2

1. 2.

THE LAUREL FIELD HUDSON RIVER VIEW

196


IIIJ.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

LAUREL FIELD

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1.

THE LAUREL FIELD

To maintain its special qualities, no tree species other than oak and no shrubs other than those of the heath family should be allowed to develop.

Insteadpof removing unwal}ted tree and

shrub seedlings by hand, however, a light winter:burn is recommended.

This burn should be done with the permission

of and in conjunction with the Garrison Fire Department, and we recommend that Manitoga consult Dr. William Niering at the University of connecticut for advice on this procedure. While the situation is relatively stable, some brush is coming in at the edges where the shrubs are not yet well developed. The oaks, because they are high on the hill and in the open, are very vulnerable to gypsy moth.

Because there are only a

few oaks here, the best method of controlling gypsy moth would be to use burlap around the trunks to trap the morning migration of the caterpillars.

This method requires daily

checking and removal of caterpillars. 2.

HUDSON RIVER VIEW

These Hudson River outlooks have been recently recut under the supervision of Joe Chapman and he should detail the directions.

These outlooks should have the branch of a tree

1

in the foreground so that they evoke the views painted in the Hudson River paintings of the 19th century.


IIIK.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

LAUREL FIELD 1 UPPER TRAIL

DESCRIPTION

This trail is one of several returns from Four Corners and takes the visitor back through the same two major openings in the landscape that were experienced along the lower portion of the Killalemy

Trail.~

Unlike the Killalemy Trail,

this trail is not a dramatic introduction, but rather a recapitulation and elaboration of the experiences along the other trails, climaxing in a dramatic descent from the Laurel Field and a leisurely trip back through Mary's Meadow to the guide house.

The upper portion of this trail, from Four

Corners to the Laurel Field, takes the visitor through the driest piece of forest on the site.

Here we are introduced

to a number of species we had not met before -- hickories, bracken fern, American chestnuts, and scrub oaks.

The

entrance to the Laurel Field winds in and out of a group of large glacial erratics and bedrock outcrops.

Little dry,

grassy openings here focus our attention on how near bedrock is to the surface.

In one of these openings, one looks

between the boulders over a rocky cliff into the Laurel Field ~nd

down into the Hudson River Valley.

200


IIIK.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

LAUREL FIELD, UPPER TRAIL

Map 1 of 3

1. 2. 3.

4. I

.",

FOUR CORNERS WHITE OAK SEAT BRACKEN FERN MEADOW UNDERSTORY GROVE

201 .


IIIK.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

LAUREL FIELD, UPPER TRAIL

Map 2 of 3

5. 6.

7• 8.

DECIDUOUS WOODS LARGE BOULDERS HUDSON RIVER VIEW SMALL CLIFF

202


IIIK.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

LAUREL FIELD, UPPER TRAIL

.Map 3 of 3

8. 9. 10.

11 .

SMALL CLIFF EXIT FROM THE LAUREL FIELD STONE STEPS ROCK FORMATIONS

20J


IIIK.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

LAUREL FIELD, UPPER TRAIL

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES 1â&#x20AC;˘

FOUR CORNERS

In the area disturbed by the sculpture, encourage the mapleleaf viburnum which has already begun to establish itself here. Weed away all other shrub

seed~ngs.

Keep understory to the

edge of the opening. 2.

WHITE OAK SEAT

In the small opening before th~-white oak seat, prune away existing saplings of other tree species to reveal the hickory gateway. 3.

BRACKEN FERN MEADOW

This is the only display of bracken fern on the property. Clear and disturb a wider area to encourage the spread of the bracken. 4.

In

UNDERSTORY GROVE ~~e

swath of light created by the break in the canopy,

emphasize the understory and shrub layers of dogwood, sassafras, and mapleleaf viburnum. 5..

DECIDUOUS WOODS

Here there are a large number of chestnut seedlings.

It

would be interesting to carry out a program of innoculation and allow these chestnuts to grow to maturity. 6. ;

LARGE BOULDERS

Remove dead trees and prune dead branches. accentuate their form and remove dead wood.

Prune shrubs to


7.

HUDSON RIVER VIEW

Reprune this view slightly in accordance with directions from Joe Chapman. 8.

SMALL CLIFF

This cliff at the entrance to the Laurel Field is passed again below as the visitor leaves the Laurel Field.

It should

be seen against a grove of black birches and ;not obscured by other vegetation. 9.

EXIT FROM THE LAUREL FIELD

The lower cliff should be seen against a grove of red maple and not obscured by other vegetation.

Remove any dead trees

and branches and all species except the ,red maple and its understory of witchhazel.

On the down-hill side of the trail,

clean out to emphasize the shrub layer of mapleleaf viburnum. 10 â&#x20AC;˘

STONE STEPS

Reset any loose steps and check for erosion in the step areas of the trail.

If necessary, build additional small stone

water diversions in the 11.

t~ail,

consulting with Baldev Raju.

ROCK FORMATIONS

Where dramatic rock formations are now obscured by encroaching vegetation, clear areas to allow the rock to be seen from the trail.

205


IIIL.

TRE TRANSITIONA!, AREAS:

DEER RUN

DESCRIPTION

Currently closed, Deer Run was used as a return trail to Mary's Meadow and was never developed as a thematic path by Wright.

Leaving Four Corners, this trail moves through a

very pleasant dry, open deciduous forest and then gently descends

th~

hillside to Mary's Meadow.

The trail passes

through a number of different young and highly disturbed woodlands, ?hoked with vines and largely composed of invasive alien species.

A very pertinent theme for this path, which

1

would provide another dimension to Manitoga's potential as a living laboratory of management techniques, is the exploration of the disturbed forest.

Such an exploration should focus

on the problems of disturbance, the solution to these problems through various management techniques, and the return of such a landscape to healthy forest.

206


IIIL.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

DEER RUN

Map 1 of 3

207


IIIL.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

DEER RUN

Map 2 of 3

206


IIIL.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

DEER RUN

Map 3 of 3

n /~

/!" .1

209


IIIL.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

DEER RUN

MANAGE1"1ENT GUIDELINES

Management of this currently closed trail should be addressed as part of the master planning process, since it would involve adopting themes that Wright had not envisioned. However, it is recommended that this trail be considered as an experimental extension of Wright's trail and forest management.

This could allow a wide range of approaches

. to be tried, as well as allow interested groups to work on : the trail as part of a possible management training program.

210 to


IIIM.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

MARY'S MEADOW

DESCRIPTION.

Mary's Meadow is a presentation of an open landscape that is in direct contrast to the forest, although it is also an example of the forest returning.

It is not the closed world

of tall thin forest trees, but a landscape of small flowering trees in open groves, wide branching specimen trees, and abundant grasses and wildflowers.

Wright cut down a young

woodland to create this meadow and the visitor passes beside ;

an example of such a woodland when he enters Mary's Meadow from the guide pouse.

The meadow, with its long central

ridge, is divided into two distinct experiences:

a broad

sloping terrace punctuated with scattered groves of dogwoods and a long narrow corridor enclosed between the ridge and the

h~~lock

forest, framed by groves of overarching dogwoods.

This second area is a natural amphitheater and has been used for concerts in the past.

At the center of the meadow and

on a ridge, a huge specimen oak dominates and anchors the entire composition.

211


IIIl'tj~"'l' r·· .. ",!"

•• 1_ .'

,"I

~

-;

..

.

.

lL

i._-t'

~'.:c_,__

The amphitheater area of Mary's Meadow. The groves of dogwoods here arch over the central meadow corridor.

'" N

,J,. ,

i."''', ('


IIIM.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

MARY'S MEADOW

Map 1 of 3

1. 3.

5.

THE MEADOW DOGWOOD GROVES OLD HEMLOCK GROVE

6.

7.

MEADOW EDGE THE路 SCREE BlJ.NK

213


IIIM.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

MARY'S MEADOW

Map 2 of 3

'I

1• 2.

3. 6.

THE MEADOW RIDGE KNOLLS DOGWOOD GROVES MEADOW EDGE

214


IIIM.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS: . MARY'S MEADOW

Map 3 of 3

1. 2. 3. 4. 6.

THE MEADOW RIDGE KNOLLS DOGWOOD GROVES SPECIMEN OAKS MEADOW EDGE

215


IIIM.

THE TRANSITIONAL AREAS:

MARY'S MEADOW

MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES

1.

THE MEADOW

Although Wright wanted this meadow mown two to four times in early summer to keep the grass low for picnicking and concerts, we feel that the meadow is currently very mowing schedule should be contemplated.

un~ightly

and a new

At the very least,

only the amphitheater area should be mown on :such a schedule, with the rest of the meadow allowed to become a stable attractive perennial grass, such as

Andropog~n.

Since no

concerts are currently planned and since the 'area is used only infrequently for picnicking, we recommend that Mary's Meadow be allowed to remain in tall grass with mown grass paths cut through it where required.

The fire pit area should

be cut at least twice during the summer to control weeds. When space for dances and gatherings is needed, a place should be mown for the occasion in the amphitheater area.

The

ridge, which is currently developing a handsome stand of Andropogon, should be mown only once a year in November after several hard frosts.

A solid field of Andropogon on

the ridge would be very attractive and could be encouraged by a limited controlled burn.

This meadow is very diverse;

the ridge areas are dry; the center of the amphitheater area

-

is compacted to the point where no mowing is necessary; and . 'the fire pit area is damp and growing up into, high rank weeds, such as mountain mint.

A reconsideration of Wright's

management is mandatory here to take advantage of these very different conditions, to reduce maintenance where possible, and to improve the appearance of the meadow as a whole.

217


2.

RIDGE KNOLLS

These rocky knolls are not currently mowed and are developing thick mounds of heaping vines, primarily oriental bittersweet. Since these vines can be eradicated at any time, it i& most important to stabilize them by establishing a mow line ,

around them which should be tightened each year like a noose so that the area of vines becomes smaller and smaller.

The

mow line can be cut twice the first year and once every year from then on. 3.' DOGWOOD GROVES

currently all the dogwoods are SUffering from the severe winter of 1977.

Under stress, many of the dogwoods were

entered by borers or contracted crown gall disease. here is impractical.

'.

Treatment

Dead dogwoods should be replaced with

small dogwoods, 4' to 5' in height, planted along the military crest of the ridge in clumps and groves.

Similar small

flowering trees could also be used, such as crabapples, hawthornes, or sassafras.

The valley floor in the amphitheater

area should be defined by an overarching canopy of dogwoods. This sense of space is now weakened by the loss of so many of the old dogwoods. 4.

SPECIMEN OAKS

The two big oak trees are important features of the meadow and should be pruned if any damage occurs. 5.

OLD HEMWCK GROVE

This grove should be cleared of deciduous species and any smaller hemlocks.

It should be experienced essentially as

three massive and extremely ancient trees which are a sculptural feature at the edge of the meadow.

These also provide a

curtain for the amphitheater below and as a striking vertical element to be seen in contrast to the horizontal meadow.

216


6.

MEADOW EDGE

eurrently the meadow is mowed right;to the edge of the forest. Despite this, clumps of fern and small dogwood seedlings are developing in a band approximately 5' to 10' in width adjacent to the forest.

In order to develop this edge as

a diverse and dramatic border to the meadow, this area should

,

not be mown for the next three to five years.

Clumps of

perennial wildflowers could be transplanted to enrich this zone and some shrub seedlings which or arrowwood, could be left.

~evelop,

blac~haw

such as

Remove, all other woody

material by pulling up by hand to include the roots, especially all vines and briars.

At the southern end of

the meadow, the forest beyond is thin and scruffy.

A large

grove of sassafras is developing in one of the holes.

This

grove and other similar ones have considerable dramatic potential.

Trees and shrubs which are.not part of the. group

should be removed and the stand itself thinned to highlight its form. 7â&#x20AC;˘

THE SCREE BANK

The scree bank is the border between Mary's Meadow and the Pastoral Hill.

It is highly visible from the new core and

is presently overgrown by weeds and young tree saplings. Wright used to clear this rocky bank to allow a clear view down into Mary's Meadow and into the Hudson River Valley beyond.

Although the entire bank need not be cleared to

maintain this view, it is desirable to remove all of the Mexican bamboo.

Pullout all

pl~nt

carefully by hand in the spring.

parts including the roots

This treatment must be

continued until there is no sign of bamboo for two successive years.

Removal of the seed source, the large ornamental

plant in Annie's front garden, will also be critical.

Mexican

bamboo is a pernicious alien which spreads vigorously and prompt action must be taken.

Many birch and sassafras saplings

have grown in at the edges of the bank.

These should be

selectively thinned with a few groves allowed to remain to frame the view.

219


IV.

THE WILD AREAS:

THE SURROUNDING FOREST

The remaining acres of the Garrison property are currently unmanaged wilderness. intervened in any way. recommended.

Here Wright has made no paths or No future management is currently

This area is a demonstration of natural forest

development and is an important contrast to the shaped and

,

focused experiences of the managed landscapes.

Views into

the wild remind the visitor of the larger time scale of natural successiqn; of the power and pomplexity of the forces creating change in the landscape; and of the indirect and occasionally ruthless 路'ways in which these

~hanges

occur.

The wildness in

Wright's garden, like the Japanese garden, was the context in which all art takes place, the base plane on which the palimsest of human development is overlain, and our ultDnate touchstone.

220

1982 Manitoga Design & Management Guide  

The Design and Management Guide documents Russel Wright's design intent and details appropriate vegetation management techniques needed to p...

1982 Manitoga Design & Management Guide  

The Design and Management Guide documents Russel Wright's design intent and details appropriate vegetation management techniques needed to p...