Sam Bridge Nursery ready to offer fall family activities

As the leaves change color and the air grows crisp, Sam Bridge Nursery and Greenhouses at 437 North Street has a number of activities in store for fall lovers of all ages.

Customers will find apples, small autumn vegetables for their gardens and plenty of other fresh produce in addition to the honey, maple syrup and eggs available year-round at the farm, according to Mary Jo Bridge Palmer, one of the nursery’s three owners.

Spooky home accents such as candy dishes that say “witch’s brew” and an assortment of ghosts and goblins will also be available to celebrate Halloween in style.

The nursery gets a fresh stock of perennials in the fall because it is the best time for gardeners to do their planting, Ms. Palmer said. In autumn, there tends to be more rainfall and the soil is warm, which encourages root growth, she explained. Accordingly, the nursery will offer free workshops on planting spring bulbs in the fall and how to create beautiful perennial gardens as well as fall pots for entryways and patios.

The biggest hit each year, however, is the free tractor hayride that takes participants all around the nursery in a continuous loop each Friday and Saturday from Sept. 28 to Oct. 27. The rides are so popular that when school groups visit the nursery each fall, students want to do nothing but “jump hay bales,” Ms. Palmer said.

Perhaps the second most popular attraction is the annual scarecrow building workshop, which will mark its 13th year this fall. Sam Bridge Nursery has been in town for more than 80 years and its fall festivities have become one of the most popular of the programs they offer throughout the year.

Nearly 200 scarecrows are created over the course of four to five weekends at Sam Bridge’s each year, which is a vast number considering the limited amount of time the workshop is available, Ms. Palmer explained.

For $35, the nursery supplies a four- or six-foot frame, head, stuffing, carrot nose and decorations for the face. Participants simply bring pants and a long-sleeve shirt and any other accessories they’d like to add, such as a hat, belt, scarf or jewelry. Each workshop is judged and the winners receive a prize, including the grand prize, which will be awarded on Oct. 29.

Additionally, employees hope that fall activities will attract plenty of customers to the store as a precursor to the brand new Christmas shop that is slated to open at the end of October, Ms. Palmer said.

The nursery has always given back to the community and provided a family atmosphere, she added. It’s a farm set in the middle of a sea of houses and the owners plan to keep it that way.

For more information on the dates and times of Sam Bridge Nursery and Greenhouses’ fall activities, visit


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