As she enters her 80s, Margaret Himes looks to her garden for solace.
She started the expansive garden behind her house in the fall of 1967, just a few months after she, her husband and their three children moved into the new home in Joppatowne.
Himes and her then-2-year-old daughter, Patty, planted tulips in the backyard that first autumn. When they came up the next spring, Patty asked if they could plant flowers every year. Patty, who suffered from a congenital heart ailment, died later that year, but Himes continued to work in the garden.
At first the backyard was heavily wooded, with an understory of mountain laurel and wild blueberries. But over the years, the large...