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Robert Cowden, 1915-2003

Articles: Robert Cowden, 1915-2003

Robert Cowden. Author's photograph

Bob Cowden . . . just hearing his name invokes images of a dapper gentleman with a charming smile; a man whose eloquence captivated listeners and readers alike; a passionate horticulturist, a highly respected rosarian, and a man with an infectious laugh that brightened a room as well as our hearts.

In 1968, Bob was the founding chairman for The Gardens at Heather Farm, and served as president in 1969-70. In 2003, he was still actively involved, serving as a board member and the newsletter editor—thirty-five years of vision, hard work, and consummate accomplishments. The premier garden within The Gardens’s six-acre development is the Cowden Rose Garden, dedicated in June 1999 to honor Bob’s contributions. Today, this majestic garden features more than 1,000 rose bushes and 150 cultivars. When interviewed about the roses, Bob summarily counted each and every bush. That was Bob’s way: thorough and prompt. He did what needed to be done, yet never lost sight of the bigger picture and of the beauty and splendor of life. A rose bud with promise, a full blossom in its glory, an...

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