Don’t miss our our annual pre-Mothers’ Day sale. You’ll find unusual plants from our members’ gardens at great prices—plus expert gardening advice and free tree seedlings while supplies last. Admission is free, too. A fun event for the whole family presented by the Garden Club of Irvington and the Hudson Valley Rock Garden Society.
On Tuesday, October 21, 2014, at 11 a.m., Maureen DePaoli, assistant to the Village of Irvington Superintendent of Parks and Recreation and GCI past president Barbara Defino will provide an overview of the Center’s history and programs and give a tour of the gardens, weather permitting. IHS Senior/Girl Scout Amy Friendlander will speak about the Center’s educational materials. Guests of members are welcome to join us at 170 Mountain Road.
For more information about the O’Hara Nature Center, please visit the Village of Irvington site.
Co-presented by The Garden Club of Irvington and the Irvington Historical Society, this event included a book signing and reception.
Stephen Scanniello is the 2013 recipient of the GCA Jane Righter Rose Medal. His latest book, A Rose By Any Other Name, was the seed for the Heritage Rose District of NY City, an all-volunteer project that has grown to include more than 1,500 heritage roses planted throughout Harlem in 35 different gardens. He works with children and adults throughout Harlem bringing back roses that grew in Manhattan when the only inhabitants were Native Americans.
Stephen will talk about the Heritage Rose District of NYC and his other rose preservation projects.
Guests and the public are invited to join us for his talk at 10:45 a.m. on Tuesday, January 21, at the Irvington Public Library.
Celebrity gardener Kent Russell recently educated and entertained Garden Club members with ideas and inspiration to create eye-catching drama in any garden setting.
“The perfect garden has a little bit of everything in it,” said Kent. He served up his “Candy in the Garden” presentation with verve and humor and illustrated his points and anecdotes with a wide assortment of live plant materials (available for sale afterwards). He re-introduced Garden Club members to fancy leaved geraniums, including “Vancouver Centennial” and “Crystal Palace.” Don’t water them and pinch for beautiful new growth, he admonished. “Geraniums hate moisture!” And he got everyone to fall in love with Abuliton, a type of flowering maple, especially “Biltmore Ball Garden.” He advised, “Treat it as an annual, out on the patio or porch. It blooms all summer and it’s easy to make cuttings. Then bring it in at it will flower all winter on a sunny windowsill.”
Kent was “The Garden Guru” on PBS and is listed as a preferred speaker by the Garden Club of America. “I was born with a silver trowel in his hand,” he says, beginning his life in horticulture at his family’s nursery, Russell Gardens, in Bucks County, PA, where he is still based. Kent designs gardens and container plantings for clients throughout the East Coast.
Famed landscape designer Larry Weaner gave Garden Club members and guests an excellent presentation on gardening with native plants of the Northeast. Here are some of the the main points of his illustrated talk that may be helpful in planting your garden:
• HABITAT: Look at plants, how they grow, and “who” they grow with.
• The same plant combinations that grow successfully in the wild can be planted successfully in a garden with the same temperature, water and soil conditions.
• Match each plant to its ideal habitat. For example, as shown in the photo below, perennial lupines typically grow at the forest edge in well-drained, sandy soil with slightly acidic pH. Scatter seeds of Lupinus perennis in the spring in a partly-shaded spot that has well-drained, sandy, slightly acidic soil, and within two years you may have a beautifully flowering stand.
• DISTURBANCE: Many seeds lie dormant, and when an event happens, like a fallen tree branch, it creates a disturbance that causes the seeds to germinate.
• Scatter seeds after disturbing an area to encourage growth. Monitor area for weed growth, most intensively during the establishment phase.
• SUCCESSION: Use shorter-lived plants (you may start from seed) as “place holders” until longer-lived perennials develop.
• Choose plants that grow and mature at different time frames.
• Use plants that spread seed and roots to fill gaps naturally.
• Structure your garden in layers (tall, medium and low) as they would grow in a woodland setting or meadow.
• Use logs and stumps in the garden as a habitat for plants and wildlife.
• “Meadows” can get weedy if not properly managed. But once established and if managed appropriately, a meadow’s dense vegetative growth can inhibit weed seed germination. Weed to favor desired species and discourage undesirables, especially during the critical establishment phase.
• Cut weeds instead of pulling. Pulling disturbs the soil, encouraging more weeds. If you must pull, plant in the gap. To get rid of vines or larger weeds, cut and paint with a herbicide rather than digging.
• If you consider views and vantage points — like viewing the garden from a distance looking up to the house — and plant using natives imitating the patterns of plant communities in nature, the results could be as rewarding as the two properties above.