December 1, 2021

Maryland Heights Residents

Crazy About Home & Real Estate

2 notable central Pa. gardens take state horticultural society awards | George Weigel

5 min read

Two Harrisburg-area gardens have won awards in the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s 2021 garden contest.

Cumberland County’s latest general public pollinator garden – one particular planted this summer on the grounds of the historic Craighead relatives dwelling around Boiling Springs – has been named a “Garden of Distinction” in the contest’s community-back garden class.

The 250-sq.-foot garden, developed by indigenous-plant educator and Cumberland County Grasp Gardener Heather Adams, was planted in June by a staff of volunteers and Learn Gardeners.

Dauphin County Learn Gardener Kevin Kelly received a Blue Ribbon in the Out of doors Dwelling Back garden class of the similar PHS contest for his Reduced Paxton Twp. household backyard.

It was the 3rd PHS honor for Kelly’s gardening endeavours. His 50 percent-acre suburban yard received a Yard of Difference honor in 2014 and a former Blue Ribbon in 2016.

The Craighead backyard is laid out in a semi-circle bed to the right (east) aspect of the 1886 Victorian-type Craighead Home.

That household is the dwelling of the renowned naturalist household that yielded award-profitable author Jean Craighead George, recognised for her children’s textbooks about mother nature, and her twin brothers John Craighead and Frank Craighead Jr., who pioneered falconry in the U.S. and had been instrumental in crafting and passing the federal Wild and Scenic Rivers Act in 1968.

The siblings put in summers in their youth at the property together the Yellow Breeches Creek, just down Aged York Highway in the vicinity of Boiling Springs. The web-site is renowned for its trout fly-fishing.

The Craighead spouse and children stopped using the home all around 2000, and by 2012, it was in disrepair. That’s when a neighborhood nonprofit named the Craighead House Committee Corp. fashioned to purchase the house and elevate funds to restore it.

Exterior renovation completed in 2019, and inside remodeling is now underway.

“We want it be an education middle with a concept of conservation and ecology,” said Ann Dailey, a Cumberland County Learn Gardener and landscape coordinator for the Craighead House.

Master Gardeners by now offered several talks this previous season and approach to do extra in the coming years.

A spring plant swap also has been held on the grounds for the earlier 7 a long time.

“Your plans seem definitely superb,” one particular of the contest judges reported of the back garden. “The ideas for wildlife habitat and the social impact this has for the community is commendable.”

Dailey explained the Learn Gardeners’ plan is to broaden the new pollinator garden into a full circle, which will consider it into the shade of close by trees.

The latest back garden is mostly in the solar and planted with native shrubs and perennial flowers, these as fothergilla, dwarf Virginia sweetspire, crimson osier dogwood, mountain mint, Joe Pye weed, butterfly weed, amsonia, asters, goldenrod, lobelia, and what Dailey claims has been a pollinator powerhouse, a pale-pink, summer months-blooming two-footer identified as noticed beebalm.

Most of the vegetation had been donated from Learn Gardener property gardens with the rest coming from the Diakon Wilderness Greenhouse in Boiling Springs, which specializes in indigenous plants.

Heather Andrews, still left, who made the Craighead Property pollinator backyard garden, and Christina Basonic, ideal, are inclined the youthful perennials in the backyard garden.

“We initially laid cardboard down about the grass, and then included it with a 6-inch combine of topsoil, mushroom soil, and chicken manure,” Dailey claimed. “The soil was fantastic at humidity retention, as properly as staying quite tasty to a wide assortment of butterflies. I do not think we dropped a lot more than a few plants all period.”

Dailey says a single of future year’s jobs is planting a little back garden together with a memorial bench by the creek, which will give readers a tranquil, picturesque location to sit.

A different project on the drawing board is adding a meadow-model garden together the west aspect of the home where by aged shrubs have been taken out.

And strategies are to give a facelift to the herb backyard garden that volunteers planted about four a long time ago alongside the western residence foundation.

“We’re seeking to bring the full thing back again to the way it was when the household used their summers there in the 1930s,” Dailey suggests.

The web-site, located at 318 E. Outdated York Highway, Boiling Springs, handles about a fifty percent-acre.

The grounds are open to the public at no demand every day from dawn to dusk. Parking is offered on a gravel lot to the remaining of the household.

The new Craighead Dwelling backyard is a person of 10 Cumberland County Master Gardener demonstration gardens.

Other people include things like a significant butterfly yard at Adams-Ricci park in East Pennsboro Twp., a Mansion Backyard garden of herbs and indigenous crops at Kings Gap park, a demo and concept backyard garden at the Claremont Nursing and Rehabilitation Heart in the vicinity of Carlisle, and a series of 10 themed gardens close to the Cumberland County Extension business at 310 Allen Road.

  • See George’s 2018 article on 18 cost-free community gardens to see in the Harrisburg space
Kelly's garden

This is the front garden in fall at Kevin Kelly’s award-winning back garden in Lower Paxton Twp.

Kelly’s suburban property in Reduce Paxton’s Fairway Estates development is covered just about fully with plants with the lawn serving as curved pathways through the beds.

The different gardens are loaded with cutting-edge plants that are skillfully paired and laid out to give switching curiosity through the four seasons.

It incorporates flowering shrubs, decorative trees, scores of dwarf conifers, and a vast range of colourful annual and perennial flowers, as well as statuary and water fountains that appeal to birds.

One particular of the contest judges named the backyard garden “one of the most wonderful gardens I have judged in above 25 several years.”

Kelly is a self-taught gardener who started gardening with no expertise in 1993, starting up with a smaller perennial backyard garden at a prior household.

He grew to become a Learn Gardener previously this 12 months immediately after semi-retiring as a household medical doctor and has grow to be a recurrent speaker on a assortment of gardening subject areas, like many at Dauphin County’s Wildwood Park.

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