Alan Summersby Emmet, author of numerous books and articles on historic gardens, as well as a novel and two memoirs, died of pancreatic cancer at her home in Westford on Oct. 9. She was 94.

She and her late husband, Richard S. Emmet, were longtime Vineyard summer residents at Chappaquonsett.

She is best known for So Fine a Prospect — Historic New England Gardens, a New York Times Notable Book about major private gardens in New England that was published in 1996. In The New York Times, Michael Pollan wrote, “So Fine a Prospect deserves a place on the short shelf of recent histories that have helped us recover a largely forgotten gardening heritage . . . Alan Emmet has added a significant new dimension to our understanding of American garden history, once treated as little more than a shallow tributary of English garden fashion.”

Earlier, she published Cambridge, Massachusetts: The Changing of a Landscape, the result of a group project in the department of landscape architecture at Harvard University. She also published articles in House and Garden, Garden Design, Horticulture, Architectural Digest, Hortus, Journal of the New England Garden History Society, Old-Time New England, Harvard Magazine, Country Gardens and numerous other periodicals.

Alan Emmet was born in St. Paul, Minn. in 1927 and grew up in New Jersey. She graduated from Radcliffe College in 1950.

In 1987, she completed the Radcliffe Seminars Landscape Design Program. She then worked at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. She prepared detailed historic landscape reports to guide organizations in their care for the gardens and grounds of many historic properties.

Her other books include a novel, The Mr. and Mrs. Club, and Our Side of the River, a family memoir focused on Minnesota. She recently completed a second, not-yet-published family memoir about the Emmets’ experiences in Ireland, where she and her husband had strong family ties.

Alan was an ardent, lifelong Democrat, as anyone who drove past her house during election season could tell. She always welcomed friends and relatives into her home and enjoyed entertaining at her Vineyard house as recently as early this September. A creative cook, her meals were always delicious.

Evenings of charades, songs and lively conversation were an almost-nightly event on the Vineyard. A consummate host, she always deflected attention away from herself and was intent on hearing what others were doing. A long swim in the Sound was her daily habit.

She and her husband placed their Martha’s Vineyard property under a conservation restriction with the Vineyard Conservation Society, permanently precluding future development. They also donated land that now constitutes much of the Nashoba Brook Wildlife Sanctuary in Westford.

She is survived by three children: Caroline Emmet Heald and her husband Seth of Rixeyville, Va., Henry T. Emmet and his wife Erica of Groton, and William T. Emmet and his wife Anne of Heath. She leaves six grandchildren, two step great-grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. She is also survived by her brother, Edmund K. Summersby of Cambridge.

Donations can be made in her memory to the Vineyard Conservation Society or the Martha’s Vineyard Museum.