One perk of writing a newspaper column is working with local gardeners and groups to promote events that help the horticulture community grow. In spring, that means lots of fun garden tours and plant sales.
Nearly every weekend this April has featured a sale, but two of the best are still to come…the local Master Gardener sale scheduled for this weekend and the Piedmont Plant & Flower Festival on May 3-6. Believe me, you don’t want to miss these!
Our first local tour, the Christ Church “Joyful Garden Tour,” is also this weekend and will be followed by two more: “Gardening for Beauty and Wildlife Habitat,” sponsored by the Greenville Council of Garden Clubs on May 11-12, and the SC Koi & Water Garden Society’s Annual Pond Tour on June 9.
Kim and Rory Whelehan’s garden, which is featured on this weekend’s tour, offered a remarkable display of tulips when I visited for an interview. The Van Engelen bulbs, which Rory prefers because they produce the tallest and most spectacular flowers, formed a sweeping arc around other spring-flowering ornamentals, including a flowering dogwood (Cornus florida), a mass of colorful azaleas, and a yellow trumpet honeysuckle vine (Lonicera sempervirens ‘Sulphurea’).
Luckily, the weekend weather forecast is looking great (partly cloudy to sunny with temps in the low to mid 70s), so gather your friends and get ready for a few fun days out.
Here are details for local tours and the remaining plant sales to be held in Greenville:
April 27 & 28: The Christ Church “Joyful Garden Tour,” is planned for 10 am to 5 pm on both Friday and Saturday and will include seven gardens in the Alta Vista and Greenville Country Club areas, as well as the newly renovated Church and its courtyard addition. The work of talented local artists depicting garden scenes will be available for silent auction in the Parish House from April 20 until a reception on April 29 at 12 noon. Tour tickets, which are $25, can be purchased at the Church bookstore, at the receptionist desk in the Parish House, at numerous local businesses, or online. For details, visit the website at http://www.ccgsc.org.
April 28: The annual spring plant sale of the Greater Greenville Masters Gardener Association will be held 8 am to 1 pm at Roper Mountain Science Center. This sale features the best ornamentals, herbs, and vegetables grown in local gardens and a Collector’s Corner featuring heirloom, rare, and unusual plants. Look for the rummage sale, plus hand-crafted art and ornaments. Prices start at $1.00. For more information, visit the website at http://www.greatergreenvillemastergardener.org.
May 3-6: The Piedmont Plant & Flower Festival with more than 30 vendors of plants, plus garden items and equipment, will be held at the Greenville State Farmer’s Market on Rutherford Road, Thursday through Saturday from 8 am to 6 pm, and Sunday from 10 am to 4 pm. Call (864) 244-4023.
May 11 & 12: The Greenville Council of Garden Clubs will offer “Gardening for Beauty and Wildlife Habitat” from 10 am to 5 pm on both Friday and Saturday. The tour highlights seven gardens in the suburbs of Greenville and Greer, each featuring plants and designs that offer tranquility, beauty, and a safe haven for wildlife. Tickets can be purchased in advance at various locations for $22 or on the day of the tour at any of the gardens for $25. For more information call 232-3020 or visit http://www.kilgore-lewis.org.
June 9: The SC Koi and Water Garden Society’s 20th Annual Pond tour will feature 8 or more gardens open from 9 am to 6 pm. A brochure providing highlights of the gardens plus their locations, all in the greater Greenville area, will be available on the Society’s website. Tickets, $10, can be purchased at the gardens or from various local businesses beginning on May 14. Children under 12 are free. Visit the website at http://www.sckwgs.org.