Secret Garden:The Legacy of Charlie and Margaret Spohr

Nestled on the fringe of a quiet residential neighborhood on Fells Road in Quissett. You will find one of Falmouth’s most iconic and beloved landmarks. Once the pride and joy of Charlie and Margaret Spohr, who lived in the house they lovingly called “The Fells” for more than four decades. Spohr Gardens spans six acres. The shady, winding trails are easy to navigate and set against the glistening backdrop of Oyster Pond. Located between the villages of Falmouth and Woods Hole. The garden is a slightly hidden oasis, not far from the beaten path of the Shining Sea Bikeway, Surf Drive and the often-busy Woods Hole Road.

By Sarah E. Murphy | Photograph by Betty Wiley
Spohr Gardens is also an outdoor museum showcasing Charlie’s cherished collection of antique bells, anchors, millstones and lanterns—from a passion that began in his youth. His prized 1760 English anchor was originally intended for use on the H.M.S. Bounty. Additionally, the gardens boast an array of specimen trees, a butterfly garden and a rock garden.
You know it’s spring in Falmouth when the azaleas and rhododendrons at Spohr Gardens pop, painting the scenery with pink and magenta. Offering a tangible reminder of Charlie and Margaret’s lasting contribution to the cultural and physical landscape of the town. Charlie and Margaret established the Spohr Gardens Charitable Trust with an eye to the future. To carry on their legacy after their deaths (in 1997 and 2001, respectively), to preserve not only the gardens, but the public’s enjoyment of them.
Spohr Gardens is often associated with daffodils, Charlie’s favorite flower, for they once blanketed the main hillside in yellow and white. Although the original blooms have since died of old age. The Spohr Gardens Charitable Trust is bringing them back: Thousands of blooms were planted in October 2022 during the inaugural Daffodil Planting Day.
It is a sacred place, not only for locals but also for tourists from all over the world. A backdrop for once-in-a-lifetime events as well as everyday moments. The lovely spot has been the site of wedding proposals and vows, engagement photos and family portraits, holiday cards and yearbook poses. You could call Spohr Gardens a muse to painters, photographers, writers and all others who seek inspiration from their Cape Cod surroundings.
Spohr Gardens is transformative, whatever the reason for your visit. The spirit of Charlie and Margaret can still be felt and seen in the flora and the trees. We are grateful recipients of the fruits of their labor.
Spohr Gardens, 45 Fells Road, is open to the public every day from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., all year long. Free, limited parking. Spohr Gardens is not wheelchair-accessible.
For information and trail maps or to donate, visit http://spohrgardens.org.

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