Mary Ellen Bay, landscape architect, dies

She had owned her own business

  • Mary Ellen Bay
Mary Ellen Bay
July 11, 2011|By Frederick N. Rasmussen, The Baltimore Sun

Mary Ellen Bay, a landscape architect and flower arranger, died July 3 at Carroll Hospital Center after suffering a coronary embolism. She was 74.

Mary Ellen Denny, the daughter of farmers, was born and raised in Wye Mills on the Eastern Shore. She was a graduate of Centreville High School.

She studied engineering for 31/2 years at the University of Maryland, College Park, and earned a bachelor's degree in fine arts from the Maryland Institute College of Art.

Mrs. Bay was a certified interior and landscape designer, and worked for more than 40 years as a freelance design consultant on gardens, residential additions and interiors.

She also taught home economics for the Carroll County Extension Office.

Mrs. Bay, who lived on a farm on the outskirts of Uniontown, owned and operated The Summerhouse, a design business.

As master gardener, she also was a floral designer and was often hired to design arrangements for weddings.

Her arrangements also brought her many awards and she also did many flower arranging demonstrations throughout Maryland.

In addition to her professional work, Mrs. Bay and her husband of 52 years, Walter C. Bay, a retired University of Maryland Extension Service agent for Carroll County who died in January, restored a 19th- century farmhouse, carriage house, hog shed and summer kitchen.

Because of her expertise, Mrs. Bay was often sought out by restorers.

Mrs. Bay, who had not retired, was known as an excellent cook, often using the fruits and vegetables she had grown in her garden in meals that she prepared for family and friends.

"She was a moving force in making [Uniontown] into the charming village it is today," said a longtime friend, Carolyn Scott.

She was an honorary member of the Carroll Garden Club and was a life member of the Carroll County Beekeepers Association Inc.

Plans for a memorial celebration of Mrs. Bay and her husband were incomplete.

Surviving are two sons, Thomas E. Bay of Union Bridge and Michael C. Bay of Sturgis, S.D.; and four grandchildren.

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