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Heritage Farmstead Museum

Within the grounds of Plano’s beautiful 1891 Farrell-Wilson Victorian farmstead are the Parlor Garden and the Kitchen Garden.

The Parlor Garden

The Parlor Garden is a lovely pleasure garden filled with ornamental plants. In 2016, Collin County Master Gardeners relied on Earth-Kind® horticultural practices to rescue the Parlor Garden from ruin, as over several years it had fallen into an overgrown state with many plants that would not have been used in a Victorian garden. Much time and effort went into preparing the overgrown garden for the Heritage Farmstead’s 125th birthday, which was celebrated during FarmFest on October 15, 2016.  

Parlor gardens became very popular in late Victorian times. Ideas were spread by popular ladies’ magazines, and the Parlor Garden contains all of the many necessary elements of a Victorian pleasure garden:

  • Front and back lawns
  • Specimen trees
  • Mixed foundation plantings
  • Specimen plants with a wide variety of plant types, shapes, and sizes
  • Ornamental fencing, seating and other garden elements
  • Flower beds heavily planted and mulched for lower maintenance
  • Trellises to both display specimen plants (especially vines) and to serve as a destination for garden paths.


The Kitchen Garden

This is a delightful recreation of an 1890’s kitchen garden, complete with scarecrows and old garden implements. Kitchen gardens were a necessity of life during the late 1800s, as fresh vegetables and herbs could not be transported safely from a distance.  Consequently, Texas farms maintained large vegetable gardens to supply herbs and fresh produce in summer and for storing in winter. These types of gardens continued to be important through World War II.

Collin County Master Gardeners began work in the Kitchen Garden in April of 2019, with re-claiming the area from weeds by hand, testing the soil for nutrients and then enriching the impoverished soil with many loads of compost and mulch. The Kitchen Garden strives to use heritage seeds and plants that would have been grown for a typical farmstead family. The Kitchen Garden welcomes participation from volunteers from local garden clubs, student and civic organizations.

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