Cheryl Brickman, Mequon, WI
Open Days Host: Dragonfly Farm
Cheryl Brickman is a gardener, garden designer, and farmer. An Open Days host who has designed several other Open Days gardens, she’s also a member of our nonprofit partner, the Milwaukee Art Museum Garden Club and, as such, worked to organize the Open Day that was scheduled for August 1.
Cheryl describes herself as “an admitted perfectionist, a hard-driving, right-brained artist with an extensive science background… I am constantly tinkering with new ways to care for our animals, design, plant, grow, prune, harvest, arrange, preserve, and enrich the ecology on our farm.”
Twenty-two years ago, Cheryl and her husband, Mark, bought a 15.5-acre property outside of Milwaukee that was a true blank slate: no trees, much less no gardens, and certainly not the amazing meadow and wetland restorations they have created. It’s called Dragonfly Farm in honor of a late summer migration of darners (large dragonflies) during their first year there.
Also an avid birder, Cheryl started her “life list” in college and keeps an ongoing list. The family now monitors 42 bird boxes of various kinds on their farm, which is also Certified Animal Welfare Approved by AGW (A Greener World) for pastured chicken and goose eggs. Thirteen-and-a-half acres of their land are protected in perpetuity by a conservation easement with the Ozaukee-Washington Land Trust.
“Being involved in Open Days has allowed us to meet people who are as excited about this farm as we are. We have visitors tell us they watch for the Open Days Directory each year to see if we are participating; they now feel like friends.”