Little Italy Lovelies by “T”

Garden description: A tiny tropical oasis in the city.
Who are the gardeners: Me.
Why do you garden: Flowers make me happy! And I like a challenge!
How has gardening impacted you during this time: It’s a great escape.
What do you have in your garden? I have hardy banana under-planted with caladiums, hardy hibiscus, a rose of sharon pruned into a tree (a work in progress!), a lemon tree, several varieties of clematis and loads of annuals- hibiscus, wave petunia, portulaca, mandevilla, sweet potato vine, lantana, verbena, calibrachoa and papyrus.
Do you have any problems with disease or pests? If so, how are you dealing with this problem? Not typically.

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Garden Oasis by “Anita Ciconte”

Garden description: Our garden is an inviting retreat from early morning to evening. The sunflowers attract yellow finches and some of the flowers attract the pollinators. You can listen to the sounds of the fountain in the one seating area and enjoy a beverage. The other seating area you can enjoy a meal or play a board game with family or friends. There is even room to play cornhole in the lawn area next to the dining table. Our garden area has versatility and is a delight!
Who are the gardeners: My husband is the primary gardener, and I’m the secondary. We have an annual family tradition and every Mother’s Day weekend we plan and purchase flowers.
Why do you garden: For relaxation and to provide an environment for nature to thrive.
How has gardening impacted you during this time: It has provided a creative outlet and provides a connection to nature.
What do you have in your garden? Planters with multiple types of annuals. The garden has cosmos, zinnias, dahlias, sunflowers. Fire and ice bush, fig trees, roses.
Do you have any problems with disease or pests? If so, how are you dealing with this problem? No.

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Flowers Gone Wild by “Flowers Gone Wild”

Garden description: I love to have flowers blooming all the time. The ones that seem to do the best self seed but of course then things get out of control.
Who are the gardeners: Mostly myself, my husband mows the lawn.
Why do you garden: for fun, I like flowers.
How has gardening impacted you during this time: I have had more of a change to enjoy the garden. Instead of it being a chore when I get home form work.
What do you have in your garden? I have a large collection of perennials, that I like to augment with flowering annuals. The yard is pretty shaded but some herbs and lettuce grow well. I try a few vegetables, the spring ones work the best. Hosta do very well and I am expanding my shade garden to include move variety of ferns.
Do you have any problems with disease or pests? If so, how are you dealing with this problem? yes, white flies. Treating with insecticidal soap.

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Rock Garden Sanctuary by “Jane Brooks”

VGC 2020 Winner!Flower Gardens – 3rd Place

Garden description: We built the garden on a hillside, making 3 levels using New York blue granite rocks. It was done in June 2018. We then added two magnolia trees, two red buds, several hydranga and three cryptomeria trees. I’ve been adding perennials, spring bulbs and annuals since.
Who are the gardeners: My husband, John, takes care of the grass and I do the flower beds. We’re both retired and love working in the garden. I grew up on a farm in NE, so it’s in my genes.
Why do you garden: I love being outside, it’s good exercise and I love flowers.
How has gardening impacted you during this time: It’s been a life saver. There’s always something that needs attention in the garden so it keeps me from going crazy. I hide from the virus in my yard and it’s very enjoyable and rewarding.
What do you have in your garden? So far I’ve planted 1000+ spring bulbs….daffodils, various allium, Spanish blue bells and Casa Blanca lilies. I’ve focused on deer resistant perennials….daisies, echinacea, rudbeckia, liatris, salvia, huechera, coreopsis, yarrow, dianthus, phlox, various sedum, lots of iris, baptisia, painted daisies, plumbago, clematis, lambs ear, drift rose, Irish moss, amsonia, carex, bee balm, lobelia, and balloon flower. Under the huge maple tree we have shade perennials….hostas, huechera, Japanese Forrest grass, hellebores, astilbe, and ferns. I add color with annuals…petunias, calibrachoa, geraniums, Brown Eyed Girl sunflowers, hibiscus, mandevilla, canna, gerber daisies, thyme, ornamental peppers, marigolds, celosia, and lots of coleous.
Do you have any problems with disease or pests? If so, how are you dealing with this problem? Haven’t really had any problems🤞

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The Garden at Mill Top by “Wes Bowers”

Garden description: The garden is a tapestry of color throughout the year. Numerous hellebores, wood poppy, lily of the valley, bloodroot and thousands of bulbs push their way skyward in the spring. These are followed by Korean spice viburnum, flowering almond, peonies, hydrangeas, amsonia, various varieties of lilies, and daisies. The highlight is the 200 dahlias that begin blooming in July and last until the first frost. The dahlias are joined by numerous varieties of perennials and several varieties of annuals. The bark of red-bark dogwood and the berries of viburnum, winterberry, purple beauty berry, and holly brighten the dull days of winter.
Who are the gardeners: Wes Bowers is the primary gardener. He is the past president of the Greater Philadelphia Dahlia Society. His dahlias have won awards at numerous shows sponsored by the American Dahlia Society. He is assisted by his wife Annette. Her primary focus is to make arrangements using flowers from the garden so she can distribute them to others in the community. She often puts her arrangements in the public library, a nearby oncology center, and her favorite coffee shop.
Why do you garden: I garden for exercise and relaxation. I get plenty of exercise weeding, spreading mulch, trimming shrubs, and tending to the dahlias. Observing the plants as they grow and flower is enjoyable and relaxing. Giving away cut flowers and divisions from the perennials is a way to spread the joy around the community. I get satisfaction knowing that I have created an environment favorable to birds and pollinators.
How has gardening impacted you during this time: The garden has been a place to relax by tending to the plants; sitting on a bench under a shade tree; laying in the hammock; and watching the bluebirds catching insects, the hummingbirds enjoying the feeder, and the woodpeckers devouring the suet.
What do you have in your garden? Most of the garden is planted with perennials. Perennials include columbine, bee balm, false indigo, blue bell, clematis, poppy, canna, calla lily, oriental lily, tiger lily, day lily, toad lily, Dutch iris, bearded iris, astilbe, sedum, yarrow, coral bells, dianthus, coneflower, oregano, phlox, chrysanthemum, cardinal flower, goldenrod, wild ginger, flowering tobacco, aster, black-eyed susan, hosta, gladiolus, liatris, catmint, sage, mint, and a couple of rose bushes. Dahlias are planted in seven different beds around the garden. There are approximately 100 different varieties of dahlias. The dahlias include many different forms, with blooms ranging in size from 1 inch in diameter to over 10 inches in diameter. Shrubs include lilac, spirea, rose of Sharon, fogathilia, dwarf magnolia, crape myrtle, butterfly bush, mountain laurel, blueberry, and several varieties of azalea, holly, and viburnum. Varieties of hydrangea include oak leaf and limelight. Tree peonies and herbaceous peonies with both single and double flowering blooms are grown. Ornamental grasses, ferns, and lily turf add texture. Annuals such as marigold, zinnia, coleus, snap dragon, verbena, and cosmos are used to add color in various places.
Do you have any problems with disease or pests? If so, how are you dealing with this problem? Minimal disease is present. Japanese beetles and grasshoppers are occasionally found and are picked off of the plants and crushed. This controls these pests without using chemicals. There are numerous deer in the area. If the deer munch on a particular plant, I select a different variety that the deer dislike.

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Veggie Garden by “Lacie Seager Ruiz”

Garden description: This is a new garden since we just moved! I wanted an area that was sectioned off from the rest of the yard.
Who are the gardeners: My husband, Sal Ruiz, helped build the area and put the fencing to keep critters out. I maintain the garden and pick the veggies!
Why do you garden: It’s nice when you need produce and can just walk out into your yard. I find it relaxing and like I’m grocery shopping! I always like seeing everything bloom!
How has gardening impacted you during this time: It’s very therapeutic! I like going out and seeing little surprises like how zucchini seems to grow overnight!
What do you have in your garden? Beefsteak tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, green and yellow bell peppers, jalapeño peppers, serano peppers, poblano peppers, green beans, zuchinni and cucumbers!
Do you have any problems with disease or pests? If so, how are you dealing with this problem? No disease or pests. Just very hot weather!

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