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Garden Bus Trips

Bus Trip! Philadelphia Private Gardens

June 07, 2016

Join DIG IT! Magazine and the Rollin’ Garden Party Bus on a garden-intensive day trip to Philadelphia. We’ll visit three private gardens in the Chestnut Hill-Wyndmoor area on Tuesday, June 28!

Sit back. Relax. Leave the driving to us as you enjoy guided tours at city private gardens designed, planted and maintained by their owners. Have lunch on your own at a myriad of diverse eateries.

Stop 1:Her Favorite Things Garden:
"My garden of just under 1 acre is a flower garden filled with my favorite species. I have planted for four seasons of interest so even in winter I will have something to look at. The garden is four years old. Except for the most mature trees, we have planted everything ourselves. We have several shade gardens, a pool garden, sunny borders and a vegetable garden. We have two large Franklinia; one was the largest specimen in Montgomery County, until it fell over in a storm. Now it is growing sideways!" Collections of flowering plants and succulents in decorative containers accent climbing roses and shrubbery. Texture, form and color embellish shade garden plantings and sunny borders.

Stop 2: A City Garden:
"The garden is more city than suburban. The house was built in 1909 and sits just across the Philadelphia city line from Chestnut Hill. It became our home 31 years ago, starting with a few white variegated hosta and the mums purchased by prior owners for putting the house on the market. Those years raised two fine young men and many plants, all by trial and error and with prayer.

Measuring 70' by 140', visitors are usually surprised by how full the garden is, though any plant lover will understand perfectly! Two large Canadian hemlocks and many weed trees in the back once made that area shady and dry, full of roots. That is all changed as over the years. We removed a dozen trees, the last a huge Norway maple sucking water and nutrients from the back third of the yard. It was removed last year. Many hosta, which were the foundation of shade planting in this area, are panting a bit as they wait for newer trees to fill in and provide shade again.

The front faces a busy street. The more formal design at the entrance to our home and plantings along the sidewalk fence are intended to entice visitors and share the delights of a bountiful garden with everyone who passes by. In all areas, it is clear that plant collecting continues, including heuchera, dahlias, roses and special varieties of unusual plants, many arriving as a sharing from other gardeners. Something is always blooming because the gardener loves exuberant color."

Stop 3: Lunch! We'll stop for lunch on our own in Chestnut Hill. Take your pick of eateries featuring Chinese, French, vegan, local, American and more while you enjoy the ambience. A list will be provided to registrants.

Stop 4: Two for the Show Garden:
"This owner-designed garden sits on a one-acre property at the corner of a busy intersection. The 25-year-old garden’s good “garden bones” consist of dozens of hollies planted by the original owners and a canopy of mature oak, hickory and beech trees. The owners added numerous native shrubs, expanded perennial beds, reduced the lawn and developed garden rooms with bluestone paths and Wissahickon schist. The owners share their garden with passers-by creating views into the garden from the sidewalk and the street, all the while continuing to create private rooms and allées for their own use. Recent additions include more sun-loving plants, an intensely-planted small vegetable garden, an expanded woodland garden, hard-pruned hollies, more Japanese maples and two fountains. Large planted pots accent paths and rooms."

Stop 5: Shopping at Paxson Hill Farm Nursery
"Paxson Hill Farm Nursery & gardens has grown into one of the areas most unique and beautiful nurseries. You will find annuals, tropicals, waterplants, koi & goldfish, trees, shrubs and thousands of perennials for sale; many being rare & unusual. Beyond the nursery are acres of public gardens with bridges, sculptures & surprises including a maze, oriental inspired garden, hobbit house and meadows. We welcome you to come and explore our many gardens and nursery. The nursery is full of our rare and unusual perennials. rare and unusual shrubs, trees, dwarf and miniature conifers. We grow these shrubs and trees in our nursery." Plus, if you're lucky enjoy the nursery's guinea hens, peacocks and turkeys. Remember, there's lots of room for plants under the bus!

Nothing is handicapped accessible. Terrain may vary. Please, no sandals or heels. prepare to do some walking.

DATE: Tuesday, June 28. Bus leaves Rockaway Townsquare Mall, Rt. 80 and Mount Hope Ave., Rockaway Township at 8:00am SHARP and returns 8-8:30PM
SECOND PICK-UP: Somerset Shopping Center, 395 US-202, Bridgewater (5 people minimum)
COST: $70 includes bus, garden admissions and guided tours

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