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Tulips that come up year after year



Grow the dainty Tulipa bakeri ‘Lilac Wonder’, a selection of a species native to Crete, and your tulip display can stage many happy returns.

Photo by colorblends

Admit it, you’re addicted to tulips. Come April, you can’t live without them, right? They are the season’s eye candy, the dollops of color that herald spring fever. But tulips have one little issue. Those big, bawdy, eye-popping, pleasingly plump flowers that steal the scene and knock your socks off, are, sadly, one-hit wonders. Sure, you might get a smattering of blossoms the second year, but compared to the traffic-halting display of their debut, what follows is not even close. Don’t despair because bulb purveyors have come up with a solution, and it fits beautifully with the way we garden today. 

What’s different about now? Everything. Years ago, we planted gardens solely devoted to tulips, and when they bowed out, we filled the blip with annuals. But nobody gardens that way anymore. Instead, we are opting for a more economical, natural approach for our perennial beds. And that’s the perfect setting to tuck in some wild (also known as species) tulips. These little numbers are bright and colorful, and the flowers are almost as hefty as their bigger sisters. Plus, they stage repeat performances in future years, so you get a whole lot of bang for your buck. 

The beauty of wild tulips is that they are becoming readily available—if you go the mail-order route. Most bulb companies now offer Tulipa clusiana ‘Lady Jane’ with its pink-and-cream-colored petals or T. clusiana ‘Cynthia’ with its yellow and peach spin on the same theme, as well as a smattering of similar species. They come up early, they look almost like wildflowers, and they do it year after year. A dozen here and a dozen there will give your garden zing long before it fully wakes up. 

Want something that can be seen from the street? Try bright-red Tulipa linifolia. Does lipstick-pink work better with your color scheme? Opt for T. bakeri ‘Lilac Wonder.’ Prefer something in the blue range? Select one of the T. humilis cultivars. You’ll find the new guys come in the same rainbow of color as the “old” guys. 

Wait! There are further advantages to going the wild route. Not only do species tulips tend to blossom earlier than their counterparts, their shorter, daintier foliage lends a graceful habit to boot. In other words, wild tulips don’t look unsightly as they die back, and nearby perennials will most likely cover over their not-so-wonderful browning leaves as they slip into slumber until next year. 

But maybe you yearn for a spring fling that makes a massive statement. You can say it loud and clear by orchestrating a combination of bulbs. Because wild tulips open early, they blend with other minor bulbs such as grape hyacinths, chionodoxa, Iris reticulata, scilla, and daffodils. Bulb purveyor Colorblends, in Bridgeport, sells expertly synchronized bulb blends that weave together to form a meadow effect, one that continues its display over the warmer months as various bulbs come and go.

They have a combination that is to die for called Aladdin’s Carpet composed of six different wild tulips, plus three muscari and a dwarf daffodil. It is color saturation over an extended period of time. Does it get any better than that? Don’t take my word for it; go see their show house in Bridgeport with its mass of bulbs running lickety-split around a white elephant of a mansion. With 25,000 flowers performing, it’s like a little trip to Holland in spring, and it’s free to the public. 

Warning: tulips are like filet mignon to grazing deer. So, if you have roving herds, you’ll need to spray your buds with a repellant. Or you could plant something less tasty—to deer, that is. Within the bulb realm, the guinea hen or checkered lily—Fritillaria meleagris—is a tulip look-alike with intricately patterned nodding bells that are completely deer- and rodent-proof.

In fact, some gardeners claim fritillarias send grazing nibblers packing with their slightly skunky scent. And how about hyacinths? They bear no resemblance whatsoever to tulips, but critters avoid these vigorous bloomers that form wands of tubular blossoming florets. Hyacinths share the tulips’ color range, but if the dense foxtail presentation that looks like cotton candy seems stilted to you, go for the Festival series of hyacinths—they hold their blossoms loosely on shorter spikes. 

However you orchestrate the show, make sure that spring is suffused with color by planning ahead and planting in autumn. Oops. You forgot? Don’t fret. You can attain instant gratification by purchasing spring bulbs and popping them in the ground as soon as it’s soft. Or try pansies. In fact, planting pansies or creeping phlox between spring bulbs is a savvy plan. Play your cards right, and this could become a perennial affair—tulips and you, same time next year.

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September 2018

Since 2007, the Litchfield Hills Farm-Fresh Market has hosted over 15 vendors, farmers, bakers, chefs, artists and makers from throughout Northwest Connecticut. Visitors to the market will find...

Cost: free

Where:
Center School, Litchfield
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View map »


Sponsor: Litchfield Farmers Market
Telephone: (860) 000-0000
Contact Name: Kay Carroll, Market Master
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Sponsor: Loft Gallery at The Smithy
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Gunn Memorial Library
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Since 2007, the Litchfield Hills Farm-Fresh Market has hosted over 15 vendors, farmers, bakers, chefs, artists and makers from throughout Northwest Connecticut. Visitors to the market will find...

Cost: free

Where:
Center School, Litchfield
West & Woodruff Street
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View map »


Sponsor: Litchfield Farmers Market
Telephone: (860) 000-0000
Contact Name: Kay Carroll, Market Master
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Litchfield Community Center
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Telephone: 186-056-78302
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Cost: free

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View map »


Sponsor: Loft Gallery at The Smithy
Telephone: 860-868-9003
Contact Name: Susan Newbury
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Scott Bond is pleased to announce three events to be celebrated with an opening reception on Friday August 24 from 6-8pm at “Byrde + the b” a full service hair salon, art gallery and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255 6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
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Where:
Washington Art Association
Gallery 4 Bryan Memorial Plaza
Washington Depot, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Washington Photographer Philip Dutton’s dramatic photos document The Chief Bigfoot Memorial Ride of 1990, a momentous event that helped commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Massacre at...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gunn Memorial Library
5 Wykeham Road
Washington, CT  06793
View map »


Sponsor: Gunn Memorial Library
Telephone: 186-086-87586
Contact Name: Sharon Morrissey
Website »

More information

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Cost: free

Where:
Center School, Litchfield
West & Woodruff Street
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View map »


Sponsor: Litchfield Farmers Market
Telephone: (860) 000-0000
Contact Name: Kay Carroll, Market Master
Website »

More information

Joan Morosani and Susan Spencer are excited and honored to be showing together for the third time at OWL. They draw from different approaches and traditions, but feel that their paintings perfectly...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St
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View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Victoria Kiszka
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Cost: free

Where:
Loft Gallery at The Smithy
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View map »


Sponsor: Loft Gallery at The Smithy
Telephone: 860-868-9003
Contact Name: Susan Newbury
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Cost: $5.00

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New Morning Market
129 Main St North
Woodbury, CT  06798
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Sponsor: New Morning Market
Telephone: 203-263-4868
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Join us for a special evening as Nancy Schuler returns to perform three new plays. Letters Home is actually two short pieces. The first half is a monologue. Meet Margaret Griffin Carey born in...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St
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View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Victoria Kiszka
Website »

More information

Scott Bond is pleased to announce three events to be celebrated with an opening reception on Friday August 24 from 6-8pm at “Byrde + the b” a full service hair salon, art gallery and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255 6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

Washington Photographer Philip Dutton’s dramatic photos document The Chief Bigfoot Memorial Ride of 1990, a momentous event that helped commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Massacre at...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gunn Memorial Library
5 Wykeham Road
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View map »


Sponsor: Gunn Memorial Library
Telephone: 186-086-87586
Contact Name: Sharon Morrissey
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Cost: $99.00 pp

Where:
Litchfield Community Center
421 Bantam Road
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Telephone: 186-056-78302
Website »

More information

Opening Reception: August 11, 4-6pm. This event is free and open to the public. MAQUETTE: The Art of the Model is an exhibition of maquettes or models by many of the sculptors currently...

Where:
Washington Art Association
Gallery 4 Bryan Memorial Plaza
Washington Depot, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Since 2007, the Litchfield Hills Farm-Fresh Market has hosted over 15 vendors, farmers, bakers, chefs, artists and makers from throughout Northwest Connecticut. Visitors to the market will find...

Cost: free

Where:
Center School, Litchfield
West & Woodruff Street
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Litchfield Farmers Market
Telephone: (860) 000-0000
Contact Name: Kay Carroll, Market Master
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More information

Curious about meditation? Come experience an hour of guided meditation and sound healing aimed to help you release tension, sleep better, and cultivate overall happiness. No prior experience...

Cost: 15.00

Where:
New Morning Market
129 Main St North
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View map »


Sponsor: New Morning Market
Telephone: 203-263-4868
Website »

More information

Join us for a special evening as Nancy Schuler returns to perform three new plays. Letters Home is actually two short pieces. The first half is a monologue. Meet Margaret Griffin Carey born in...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St
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View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Victoria Kiszka
Website »

More information

Joan Morosani and Susan Spencer are excited and honored to be showing together for the third time at OWL. They draw from different approaches and traditions, but feel that their paintings perfectly...

Cost: Free

Where:
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160 South St
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View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Victoria Kiszka
Website »

More information

The Loft Gallery welcomes an exhibit of large-scale landscape and gardenscape paintings by South Kent CT artist, Lisa Brody. This show opens on Saturday, September 1st, and runs through Sunday,...

Cost: free

Where:
Loft Gallery at The Smithy
10 Main Street
New Preston, CT  06777
View map »


Sponsor: Loft Gallery at The Smithy
Telephone: 860-868-9003
Contact Name: Susan Newbury
Website »

More information

Scott Bond is pleased to announce three events to be celebrated with an opening reception on Friday August 24 from 6-8pm at “Byrde + the b” a full service hair salon, art gallery and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255 6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

Washington Photographer Philip Dutton’s dramatic photos document The Chief Bigfoot Memorial Ride of 1990, a momentous event that helped commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Massacre at...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gunn Memorial Library
5 Wykeham Road
Washington, CT  06793
View map »


Sponsor: Gunn Memorial Library
Telephone: 186-086-87586
Contact Name: Sharon Morrissey
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Since 2007, the Litchfield Hills Farm-Fresh Market has hosted over 15 vendors, farmers, bakers, chefs, artists and makers from throughout Northwest Connecticut. Visitors to the market will find...

Cost: free

Where:
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West & Woodruff Street
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Sponsor: Litchfield Farmers Market
Telephone: (860) 000-0000
Contact Name: Kay Carroll, Market Master
Website »

More information

The Loft Gallery welcomes an exhibit of large-scale landscape and gardenscape paintings by South Kent CT artist, Lisa Brody. This show opens on Saturday, September 1st, and runs through Sunday,...

Cost: free

Where:
Loft Gallery at The Smithy
10 Main Street
New Preston, CT  06777
View map »


Sponsor: Loft Gallery at The Smithy
Telephone: 860-868-9003
Contact Name: Susan Newbury
Website »

More information

Scott Bond is pleased to announce three events to be celebrated with an opening reception on Friday August 24 from 6-8pm at “Byrde + the b” a full service hair salon, art gallery and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255 6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

Dr. Vincent P. de Luise, Cultural Ambassador for the Waterbury Symphony Orchestra, and frequent lecturer on the humanities, presents a musically enhanced visual presentation...

Cost: Free and open to the public

Where:
Gunn Memorial Library
5 Wykeham Road
Washington, CT  06793
View map »

More information

Washington Photographer Philip Dutton’s dramatic photos document The Chief Bigfoot Memorial Ride of 1990, a momentous event that helped commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Massacre at...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gunn Memorial Library
5 Wykeham Road
Washington, CT  06793
View map »


Sponsor: Gunn Memorial Library
Telephone: 186-086-87586
Contact Name: Sharon Morrissey
Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
Litchfield Community Center
421 Bantam Road
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Telephone: 186-056-78302
Website »

More information

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Cost: donation

Where:
Hunt Hill Farm
44 Upland Road
New Milford, CT  06776
View map »


Sponsor: Hunt Hill Farm
Telephone: 860.355.0300
Contact Name: John C. Maxwell III
Website »

More information

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Cost: $15.00 pp

Where:
Litchfield Community Center
421 Bantam Road
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Telephone: 186-056-78302
Website »

More information

If you only know “Short People” and “You’ve Got a Friend in Me,” then you don’t know Randy Newman. From his 1968 debut album through the 2017 Grammy-winning Dark Matter (not to mention...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Victoria Kiszka
Website »

More information

Joan Morosani and Susan Spencer are excited and honored to be showing together for the third time at OWL. They draw from different approaches and traditions, but feel that their paintings perfectly...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Victoria Kiszka
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Since 2007, the Litchfield Hills Farm-Fresh Market has hosted over 15 vendors, farmers, bakers, chefs, artists and makers from throughout Northwest Connecticut. Visitors to the market will find...

Cost: free

Where:
Center School, Litchfield
West & Woodruff Street
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Litchfield Farmers Market
Telephone: (860) 000-0000
Contact Name: Kay Carroll, Market Master
Website »

More information

The Loft Gallery welcomes an exhibit of large-scale landscape and gardenscape paintings by South Kent CT artist, Lisa Brody. This show opens on Saturday, September 1st, and runs through Sunday,...

Cost: free

Where:
Loft Gallery at The Smithy
10 Main Street
New Preston, CT  06777
View map »


Sponsor: Loft Gallery at The Smithy
Telephone: 860-868-9003
Contact Name: Susan Newbury
Website »

More information

Scott Bond is pleased to announce three events to be celebrated with an opening reception on Friday August 24 from 6-8pm at “Byrde + the b” a full service hair salon, art gallery and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255 6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

Washington Photographer Philip Dutton’s dramatic photos document The Chief Bigfoot Memorial Ride of 1990, a momentous event that helped commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Massacre at...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gunn Memorial Library
5 Wykeham Road
Washington, CT  06793
View map »


Sponsor: Gunn Memorial Library
Telephone: 186-086-87586
Contact Name: Sharon Morrissey
Website »

More information

Joan Morosani and Susan Spencer are excited and honored to be showing together for the third time at OWL. They draw from different approaches and traditions, but feel that their paintings perfectly...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Victoria Kiszka
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Laura from Olive My Skin will be joining us to talk about her lovely natural soaps, wood wick soy candles and skin care line, all proudly made in Connecticut. All Fair Trade, paraben free,...

Cost: free

Where:
The Smithy
10 Main Street
New Preston, CT  06777
View map »


Sponsor: The Smithy
Telephone: (860)868-9003
Contact Name: susan
Website »

More information

St. Michael’s Parish will present a special observance for their patronal saint on Saturday, September 29 beginning at 5:00p.m., with the doors opening at 4:30p.m.  The program, which includes...

Cost: Freewill Offering with suggested donation $20

Where:
St. Michael's Parish
25 South Street
Just off the Litchfield Green
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: St. Michaels-Litchfield
Telephone: 860-567-4456
Contact Name: Jo Ann Jaacks
Website »

More information

Joan Morosani and Susan Spencer are excited and honored to be showing together for the third time at OWL. They draw from different approaches and traditions, but feel that their paintings perfectly...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Victoria Kiszka
Website »

More information

Since 2007, the Litchfield Hills Farm-Fresh Market has hosted over 15 vendors, farmers, bakers, chefs, artists and makers from throughout Northwest Connecticut. Visitors to the market will find...

Cost: free

Where:
Center School, Litchfield
West & Woodruff Street
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Litchfield Farmers Market
Telephone: (860) 000-0000
Contact Name: Kay Carroll, Market Master
Website »

More information

YOUR CHANCE FOR AN EXCLUSIVE LOOK AT SOME OF WASHINGTON'S MOST INTRIGUING PROPERTIES! This self-guided tour features eco-friendly and architecturally significant houses, plus Back 40 Farm....

Cost: $50.00

Where:
Various Locations
Washington, CT


Sponsor: Washington Environmental Council
Telephone: 860-717-0819
Website »

More information

Celebrate the apple harvest the old fashioned way! The Litchfield Historical Society invites the community to the First Annual Apple Harvest Festival on Saturday, September 29, 2018 from 1 to 5...

Cost: Free!

Where:
Tapping Reeve Meadow
82 South Street
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Litchfield Historical Society
Telephone: 860-567-4501
Contact Name: Kate Zullo
Website »

More information

The Loft Gallery welcomes an exhibit of large-scale landscape and gardenscape paintings by South Kent CT artist, Lisa Brody. This show opens on Saturday, September 1st, and runs through Sunday,...

Cost: free

Where:
Loft Gallery at The Smithy
10 Main Street
New Preston, CT  06777
View map »


Sponsor: Loft Gallery at The Smithy
Telephone: 860-868-9003
Contact Name: Susan Newbury
Website »

More information

St. Michael’s-Litchfield will present a special observance for their patronal saint on Saturday, September 29 at 5:00p.m.  The lively program, which includes the Black Rock Brass...

Cost: Freewill Offering

Where:
St. Michael's Parish
25 South Street
Just off the Litchfield Green
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: St. Michael's-Litchfield
Telephone: 860-567-4456
Contact Name: Jo Ann Jaacks
Website »

More information

In Italian cuisine, a ragù is a meat-based sauce, which is commonly served with pasta or polenta. Traditional recipes are all meat-based and can be a mixtures of beef, chicken, pork, duck,...

Cost: $95

Where:
Hunt Hill Farm
44 Upland Rd
New Milford, CT  06776
View map »


Sponsor: Hunt Hill Farm
Telephone: 860-355-0300
Website »

More information

Scott Bond is pleased to announce three events to be celebrated with an opening reception on Friday August 24 from 6-8pm at “Byrde + the b” a full service hair salon, art gallery and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255 6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

Washington Photographer Philip Dutton’s dramatic photos document The Chief Bigfoot Memorial Ride of 1990, a momentous event that helped commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Massacre at...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gunn Memorial Library
5 Wykeham Road
Washington, CT  06793
View map »


Sponsor: Gunn Memorial Library
Telephone: 186-086-87586
Contact Name: Sharon Morrissey
Website »

More information

The Farm-Fresh Market was created in 2007 with 15 local vendors, and has grown over the years to become a staple of the Litchfield Hills community throughout all seasons. We were so proud to be...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Center School Parking Lot
Woodruff Lane
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Telephone: 860-567-3871
Website »

More information

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