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Archives for July 2, 2017

Universal design makes homes accessible and pleasing – Las Vegas Review

Home for Life Design and Adventure in BuildingThe family needed a kitchen that all could use, even an adult wheelchair user. A multilevel island and cooktop and sink on lifts were part of the red ...Home for Life Design and Adventure in BuildingThis side-open oven has a shelf underneath for easy in and out access.LowesDoors that swing open and closed can pose problems for those in walkers and wheelchairs. Barn doors offer a stylish soltionOne Eleven Ltd.Bathrooms are a hot zone for universal design. A barrier-free walk-in shower with a grab bar and detachable shower head works well for aging adults.

In our 40s, we’ve accepted the aches and pains that remind us we’re no longer 25. That said, the last thing we want to think about is how our health might look in our 60s and 70s, much less what living accommodations we might need to handle our changing physical abilities.

In 2011, an AARP national survey found two-thirds of those 45 and older wanted to remain in their current home as long as possible. The older the survey participants were, the more entrenched the idea of aging in place was, eventually boosting the percentage up to 90 percent.

So, in the past decade, “universal design” for those wanting to age in place has become a hot term in interior design circles and even among homebuilders seeking to offer long-term solutions beyond simple single-story floorplans to buyers.

“The goal is to ‘senior-proof’ homes just as new parents ‘baby-proof’ homes for a newborn,” said Mitchell Altman, a retired certified aging in place specialist (CAPS), a designation from the National Association of Homebuilders. “The problem is that very few people do this because they are in denial or because the seniors don’t want to burden their kids and don’t tell them about their issues. They have a deep sense of wanting to remain independent.”

If you are one of those people who either need to make changes to your home to accommodate physical limitations or you’re a 40-something willing to overcome your denial, Altman and other experts offer a few design tips to consider.

Bathrooms

Regardless of whether you are buying a new home today or looking to remodel your current residence, bathrooms and kitchens are the big hot zones for universal design. They are the places where most accidents and falls happen for seniors.

Altman said it’s important to focus on steps and ledges in and out of the bath and shower. The 18-inch tall bathtub may feel like it’s 6 feet tall for a senior, he said, because balance and the ability to lift the leg are not what they once were.

Opt for a barrier-free walk-in shower or walk-in tub, if possible. Inside the shower, grab bars are a necessity, too. To assure the space does not look like a hospital, Altman suggests aesthetically-pleasing bars from Invisia and Health Craft.

“They make some beautiful ones, and you’d never know they were grab bars,” he added.

Grab bars should be installed by a handyman, said Linda Frasier, assistant professor of occupational therapy at Touro University. She said some bars offer convenient adhesive installations, but those are more likely to break off. A licensed contractor will anchor the bar to a stud behind the wall, which is key to safety.

Inside the shower, place the soap and shower holder up high, so you don’t need to bend down when standing, Frasier added. That’s good for those in their 40s and 50s to avoid back and shoulder problems later.

Add a bench in the shower and a detachable shower head, said Kelly Miller, a Las Vegas-based CAPS and interior designer who is also a physical therapist. Look at no-slip flooring options as well, she adds.

For new homebuyers, opt for a higher commode and watch bathroom layouts with regards to the placement of the commode, Miller said. Some builders place a vanity next to a toilet.

“You see people try to use the vanity as a grab bar and that usually doesn’t work out well,” she added.

Kitchens

For kitchens, Frasier encourages new homebuyers or remodelers to create as much space as possible and to opt for higher countertops, if possible, to prevent too much slouching over to do things.

She also recommends placing lights under top cabinets to illuminate countertops. Watch countertop colors, too. Some granite patterns make it hard for certain items to be seen for those with diminished eyesight. Opt for a neutral single color countertop, if possible. Install levered cabinet handles, not knobs, which are more difficult to grab for those with arthritis or problems grasping things.

Think of how appliances operate, too. Look at how stove and oven dials work and choose ones that have safety features where if they are accidentally knocked or not turned correctly, they will not create a health hazard.

“You want everything to be simple and very easy to use,” Frasier said.

Modify the inside of cabinets, too. For ground cabinets, sliding shelves prevent the need to kneel to get items deep inside the cupboards, and there are top cabinet options with pull downs, too.

Other considerations

Beyond the bathroom and kitchen, specifically, experts advise the following general tips for the entire home.

n Doors: The larger the better. Altman recommends 36-inch doors if the area permits. Hallways should be a minimum of 36 inches wide, too, according to the NAHB’s Aging In Place Remodeling Checklist.

Pay attention to how a door swings, which can pose problems for those in walkers and wheelchairs. Pocket doors, where the door slides into a wall, are a popular solution, Miller said.

Barn doors also have become stylish, allowing for doors to slide on thin tracks. In certain cases, some will opt to remove a door entirely and use a curtain instead.

n Technology, lights: Convenience items like Amazon Echo also can serve aging-in-place needs. By being able to speak a function like turning on the lights or the coffee maker or stove, those with physical limitations can reduce unneeded reaching for knobs and switches.

Other sensor products turn on a light when entering a room, and others for the hearing impaired make lights flicker when the doorbell rings. On a simpler note, replacing old flip switches with rocking light switches is also helpful.

“You can still easily hit the switch with an elbow or something else,” Miller said.

n Everyday concerns: Don’t overlook simple, common sense, changes as well. Do away with tripping hazards such as throw rugs and extension cords.

“We always tell people to declutter as much as possible,” Frasier said.

If you’re designing a new space, avoid a sunken living room. For entryways, add thresholds to easily get in and out. The NAHB Aging In Place Checklist also recommends sensor lights at the front door, no-slip floors in the foyer and to make all thresholds throughout the home flush, if possible.

Pay attention to window fixtures as well, Frasier noted. Make sure the sun can be completely blocked out to avoid glare in particular areas of the home. That glare could pose a health risk if eyesight becomes an issue.

n Financial assistance: For those with life insurance and who have experienced a health event like a heart attack or stroke, home improvement financial assistance could be sought from your insurer, said Miller, in some cases as much as $10,000.

To learn more about universal design and aging in place, visit the NAHB website’s Aging In Place Checklist or aginginplace.org.

Article source: https://www.reviewjournal.com/life/home-and-garden/universal-design-makes-homes-accessible-and-pleasing/

Volunteers help plant butterfly garden at Townsend Town Hall – News

The garden was symbolically planted on June 22 during National Pollinator Week (June 20-26), the week within which the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) asked citizens to create garden habitats to support pollinators such as bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.

The Town of Townsend has, once again, confirmed its commitment to protecting the environment by planting a butterfly garden at its new Town Hall location.

The garden was symbolically planted on June 22 during National Pollinator Week (June 20-26), the week within which the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) asked citizens to create garden habitats to support pollinators such as bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.

To highlight pollinator decline and inspire people to plant pollinator gardens, the Empire State Building was even lit up in black and yellow on June 22 to suggest that even in cities such as New York, with high-rises and dense urban environment, people can plant pollinator gardens in containers where space is limited. See the NWF website for more information.

Community support for the new butterfly garden is evidenced by the donation of mulch by Mr. Mulch and the donation of the plants for the garden by Willey’s Farm Market. Kathy, from Willey Farms, was instrumental in selecting the plants and assisting with the garden design.

The mulch was spread and the garden planted by Townsend Brownie Troop 914 as a community service, and the girls could not have been more enthusiastic about the experience. Each plant in the garden is labeled so that the new garden can serve as a demonstration garden, inspiring and assisting those who may want to consider planting a garden of their own.

It should be mentioned that Townsend has the distinct honor of being the first community in Delaware and the 42nd community in the nation to be certified by the NWF as a Community Wildlife Habitat. The certification was received in April 2010 after three years of dedication by Town Council, residents and various outside agencies – all of whom were intently focused on protecting our environment.

A library maintained at Town Hall contains information and press releases about all of the activities and events that earned the Town its certification. The library also contains numerous books for both children and adults that can be borrowed and complimentary NWF publications on how to construct backyard ponds, nesting boxes and bird feeders, as well as information relating to environmentally friendly practices for lawn reduction, attracting butterflies and wildlife. Townsend continues to meet all requirements for re-certification as it prepares to receive its 7-year recertification as a Community Wildlife Habitat later this year.

Townsend Councilwoman Lorraine Gorman stated that the town attempts to schedule events pertaining to the environment at significant times, as demonstrated by sponsoring a guided nature hike through the Blackbird Creek Reserve during National Wildlife Week in 2014, proclaiming Earth Day 2016 to be Mayor’s Monarch Pledge Day in the Town of Townsend, announcing the planting of a butterfly garden at the Townsend Elementary School, and co-sponsoring a tree give-away with the NWF.

Planting of the new butterfly garden during National Pollinator week is yet another example of good timing.

Article source: http://www.middletowntranscript.com/news/20170630/volunteers-help-plant-butterfly-garden-at-townsend-town-hall

New Walker Art Center campus finally connects museum, Sculpture Garden and Minneapolis

One of the first things you notice when visiting the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden is the other visitors — walking in pairs and groups, walking with a bike, pushing strollers. Sometimes, they pause to take photos of one another with “Spoonbridge and Cherry,” then rejoin the flow on the open garden grounds, which stretch from the Walker Art Center to Dunwoody Boulevard.

Another thing you might notice is the flow of city traffic with a rhythm of its own, slowing to a halt for stoplights and then starting up again.

That sense of openness, movement and connection to the city wasn’t part of the garden’s original 1988 design by Edward Larrabee Barnes. Nor was is a priority when the garden was expanded in 1992 by Michael van Valkenburgh. Back then, the garden was enclosed by walls of spruce trees on three sides, closed off from the distractions nearby.

But the new, improved Sculpture Garden is part of a brilliant reweaving of the Walker’s setting that includes the transformative entry on Vineland Place, the Wurtele Upper Garden on the old Guthrie site, and much needed plantings along the Walker’s Hennepin Avenue facade.

Rethinking the garden — with help from Tom Oslund and Tadd Kreun of Oslund and Associates along with the Walker and the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board — created what feels like a public park on public land, rather than an enclave.

In a daring design move, the Oslund firm proposed removing the stand of trees to the north of “Spoonbridge and Cherry.” Since they were planted in the early 1990s, the trees have grown until they blocked the visual connection between the garden’s north and south ends. In fact, Dana Murdoch, the Park Board’s project manager for the renovation, said that “many people never ventured north of the trees” to explore the rest of the garden.

The old Armory Gardens, circa 1915, were open to surrounding streets much like the reopened Sculpture Garden.

Studers to close on SunTrust Tower building in August

 

A $6 million upgrade to the SunTrust Tower building at 220 W. Garden St. in downtown Pensacola should launch in September under the property’s expected new owners – Quint and Rishy Studer.

The Studers announced in April that they had an accepted offer to purchase the site from GNL Pensacola LLC. The offer was for $8.5 million. The transaction is anticipated to close in August, at which point Studer Properties (owned by the Studers) will commence on what is projected to be a year-long renovation process.

“It’s really going to be a place where you can bring a lot of people together to celebrate and learn,” Quint Studer said. “We want to have a home for ideas, celebrations and solutions.”

More: Studers to purchase SunTrust building in downtown Pensacola

Half of the funds to improve the building are set for a new 4,000-square-foot conference center and events space on the first floor. Andrew Rothfeder, Studer Properties president, described the space as “flexible,” noting that it could serve for hosting community planning, town halls or meetings for mission-driven groups. It could also be converted into an event space for weddings or galas.

“What we’ve been trying to do for a while now is create a world class community center focused on community dialogue and solutions finding,” Rothfeder said. “What the new (downtown) YMCA is to the body, this center will be to the brain.”

Additionally, the company also plans to convert the triangular, concrete courtyard situated in the front of the building. Rothfeder said the new outdoor plaza area will include landscaping, outdoor seating, greenspace and other amenities.

More: Studer: Create culture that helps employees motivate themselves

“Our hope would be that one of the things we could do there is find a way to do some type of projection on one of the southeast facing sides of that building for community movie nights or educational programming,” he explained.

The other half of the renovation funds will go to improving the facilities on the upper floors for the building’s tenants. The tenants include the University of West Florida’s Haas Center for Business Research Economic Development as well as The Wendco Corp., which owns 43 Wendy’s throughout Northwest Florida and Alabama.

The improvements will involve infrastructure and building upgrades such as new ceilings, renovated elevators and bathrooms, new exterior finishes and upgraded mechanical, plumbing and electrical systems.

Finally, the site will also be the new home of the Studer Community Institute, which studies quality of life aspects in the Pensacola region, and focuses on early childhood learning and creating a strong business culture. The institute, founded by Quint Studer, is currently located at 41 S. Alcaniz St. It regularly invites national speakers to the region, which it will continue to do at the new location.

“Our idea is to have this space constantly programmed and active,” Rothfeder said.

Article source: http://www.pnj.com/story/money/business/2017/07/01/studers-suntrust-tower-building-august-quint/444242001/

See flowers in bloom on scenic garden tour

PATASKALA – Do you have a green thumb and enjoy gardening? 

If so, then an upcoming event may appeal to you.  

West Licking Historical Society is holding its annual scenic garden tour from 1 to 5 p.m. July 8.   

This year’s fourth annual tour will stop at five local gardens, giving attendees a glimpse at some of the area’s more colorful front, back and side yards.

Martha Tykodi, a member of the historical society, said people can expect to see different gardening styles displayed on the tour. 

 

“One of the gardens is all annuals,” Tykodi said. “Others are only perennials, and one of them is a complete vegetable garden, but only in containers, not in the ground.”

Some of the gardens have incorporated fountains, wooded areas and hanging baskets. One even features a “Block O” composed of flowers. 

Tykodi’s home is one of the stops on the tour. 

Her great-great-great grandfather purchased the property in 1822, and some of the trees and other features date back to the late 1800s. 

“It’s an evolution of a farm into a yard,” Tykodi said. 

Part of that evolution included the installation of horseshoe pits, and Tykodi is bringing them back for the tour. 

“That was a part of this yard long ago, when my father was alive, back in the 1950s and 1960s,” said Tykodi, adding people will be able to play horseshoes at the stop. 

 The tour has grown in popularity, drawing larger and larger crowds each year. 

Part of the popularity likely stems from the fact people pick up gardening ideas at the various stops. The gardeners are there to talk and share ideas, whether those ideas are about landscaping, growing different flowers and vegetables or lawn art.

“The whole philosophy of gardening has a lot of different meanings to different people,” Tykodi said. 

The list of stops includes: 

  • The garden of Tom and Martha Tykodi, 4392 York Road. A log cabin once stood on the property, and shade-providing trees that date back to the late 1800s still do. Hanging baskets and seasonal flowers and wooded areas dot the property. As an added bonus, tour attendees will be able to play horseshoes. 
  • The garden of Mary White, 454 White Path St. Located near downtown Pataskala, One of its main features is containers and hanging baskets. A huge row of sunflowers adorns the garden. 
  • The garden of Judy Baird, 12705 Cable Road. Standing in one of Pataskala’s more rural areas, the garden started out as an “outdoor room with hedges as walls,” Baird said. The outdoor area includes a fountain, terraced garden with lilies, bird baths, music, lighting and a pond. 
  • The garden of Victoria Tankersley, 193 Merritt Road. Tankersley has been gardening for more than 20 years, and she constantly changes her garden, reducing, enlarging and transplanting her many flowers.  
  • The garden of Sherry Robinson, 6194 Summit Road. Located in Summit Station in western Pataskala, the garden features a large “Block O” made of red begonias and dusty millers. Ninety percent of Robinson’s garden consists of annual flowers, and she plants around 10 flats each year, with each flat holding 32 to 48 flowers. 

The tour serves as one of the society’s biggest fundraisers. 

Without it, the non-profit organization would struggle to preserve southwest Licking’s County’s history, Tykodi said. 

 

West Licking Historical Society’s Scenic Garden Tour

What: A scenic garden tour in southwest Licking County.  

When: From 1 to 5 p.m. July 8. The tour is a rain-or-shine event.

Where: Five different locations in and around Pataskala. 

How much: The pre-tour cost is $12 per person, while the day-of cost is $15 per person. Children 6 and under are admitted for free. 

For more information or tickets: People can pick up pre-tour tickets and information at the following locations: The Pataskala Banking Co., Park National Bank’s location inside the Kroger shopping center and Bremen Banking Center’s Pataskala location. Tickets also will be available at each of the stops on the day of the tour. Call 614-562-7411 or 740-927-2424 for additional information. 

Article source: http://www.newarkadvocate.com/story/news/local/pataskala/2017/06/30/see-flowers-bloom-scenic-garden-tour/409364001/

Keep ticks off: Be vigilant to prevent Lyme disease

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School’s out. It’s summertime. Vacations are on the horizon. And the warm temperatures and sunny weather – we’ll get out share, honest – draws us outside for picnics, hikes, games and many other activities.

But summer can also bring out the bugs.

And bugs that bite can and do transmit disease. Ticks, a prime summer insect, can carry a number of disease, including Lyme disease.

Deer ticks have been slowly moving up the Mid-Atlantic and lower New England states. Data suggests that 2017 could be a high-risk year for Lyme disease in the northeast at least in part to warm winter weather.

Ticks can easily survive mild winters and once spring comes, they search for hosts. The ticks will leap onto a host and immediately begin feeding, burying its head in the skin and staying there. May through July are particularly active months.

Lyme disease is transmitted to humans through the bite of infected blacklegged ticks, more commonly called deer ticks.

A single deer tick can take the fun out of your entire summer if it transmits Lyme disease.

Early symptoms of Lyme disease can vary widely. Typically, Lyme disease can cause fever, rash, join paint, fatigue and at times, serious joint and nervous system complications. The red, expanding “bull’s-eye” rash long associated with Lyme disease does not always appear.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention records around 30,000 cases every year, but not all cases are recorded and the agency believes the number could be much higher.

The CDC also reported that New York has the third-highest number of confirmed cases of Lyme disease in the entire country, behind only Pennsylvania and New Jersey. New York saw 3,252 confirmed cases in 2015, with another 1,062 probable cases. The three-year average is 16.2 cases per 100,000 persons, according to CDC.

In Livingston County, there were only two confirmed cases of Lyme disease in 2015, the most recent data available, and 21 between 200 and 2014, according to CDC data. The county’s incidence rate of 3.1 cases per 100,000 between 2012 and 2014 was among the lowest in the state – though don’t take that number lightly – the state health department cautions that with fewer than 10 cases, the rate is considered unstable.

Don’t be alarmed, but be proactive.

This week, our “Wellness” columnist Lorraine Wichtowski offers a number of tips to prevent ticks. (See page B7 for full column, which includes a technique for removing ticks from your body.)

Some are simple – avoid areas with high grass and leaf litter and walk in the center of trails when hiking; wear long sleeves, long pants and long socks when possible; and apply a tick repellent that contains DEET to exposed skin and clothing, or treat clothing with a repellent called permethrin (but don’t apply permethrin directly to the skin. Other advice involves conducting a full-body tick check, tumble dry clothes in a dryer and treat your dogs or cats for ticks.

Around your home some simple landscaping ideas can help reduce the tick population. These include removing leaf litter, clearing tall grasses and brush around homes and the edge of lawns

Getting eaten by insects is not very pleasant, and certainly won’t make summer activities enjoyable.

Be vigilant and take precautions. Protect yourself and your children.

With a little preparation you won’t get ticked off during summer fun.

Have a great summer.

– By Ben Beagle, Editor

Article source: http://www.thelcn.com/lcn06/keep-ticks-off-be-vigilant-to-prevent-lyme-disease-20170630

Stop those destructive corn earworms in their tracks – Tribune

Updated 2 hours ago

For gardeners who grow sweet corn, there’s no more dreaded pest than the corn earworm. After waiting weeks for the corn harvest to mature, it’s a real disappointment to peel back the outer husks of an ear of corn and discover a chubby brown caterpillar munching away on the kernels.

Like any other garden pest, the first step in tackling corn earworms is to understand their lifecycle. While managing this pest with chemicals is standard practice on big farms, most home gardeners will want to stay away from these synthetic products to limit their exposure as much as possible.

The corn earworm, Heliothis zea, is actually not a worm at all, but rather a caterpillar. The larvae of a dark brown or olive green, night-flying moth, earworms can reach an inch in length just before they pupate into adults. Earworms are often brown or dark green with a yellow or black stripe down their side. When you peel back the husk of the corn, the caterpillar is often found curled into a C-shape at the base of the silks.

The same species of caterpillar also feeds on tomatoes, where the caterpillar is called a tomato fruit worm. Tomato damage appears as perfectly round holes drilled straight through the flesh of ripe tomatoes.

In the corn patch, not only do the maturing earworms feed on the corn kernels themselves, but as the cob is growing, the young caterpillars may also feed on the leaves and tassels of the plant, causing different layers of damage. We gardeners, however, tend to notice this pest the most, of course, when we crack open an ear of corn and discover them hidden inside.

There are several different ways to control corn earworms without using synthetic chemical pesticides. First, closing the top of the developing ear as soon as the silk starts to develop can keep young caterpillars out of the ear completely. If your corn patch is fairly small, use a wooden clothespin or a piece of clear packing tape to pinch the top of the husks together securely. The female moth can still lay her eggs on the silks as usual, but the young caterpillars won’t be able to crawl down into the cob and begin to feed.

Another option is to apply five drops of corn oil laced with the natural biological insecticide Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) to the tip of each developing ear. This is best done when the silk begins to brown. Use 3 tablespoons of Bt per quart of the mixed oil. It might seem like a pain to apply the Bt and oil combo, but for home gardeners with a small to moderate sized corn patch, it doesn’t take long, if you have a medicine dropper or needle-less syringe to apply the Bt-oil mixture. I’ve also applied it via a squirt gun and it worked like a charm. Just shoot five drops out of the gun down into the tip of each ear.

A third way to send corn earworms packing is to encourage the multitude of beneficial insects that use corn earworm caterpillars as food or as hosts for their developing young. Farms and gardens with corn patches that are inter-planted with lots of flowering herbs and annuals have higher numbers of the predaceous and parasitic insects that naturally help reduce corn earworm numbers. Good flowering plant choices to include in and around your corn plants include dill, fennel, sunflowers, cosmos, cilantro, Ammi and lots of others. Several studies have shown that the presence of beneficial insects such as spiders, minute pirate bugs, parasitic wasps and tachnid flies can reduce corn earworm numbers by as much as 70 percent.

And finally, you can also choose to do nothing to manage the corn earworms in your corn patch. The good news is that even when present, these caterpillars don’t cause significant damage to ripe ears. They tend to stay close to the tips of the ears as they feed, and while discovering them in an ear of homegrown corn is kind of icky, their damage is very easy to cut out of the cob. The rest of the undamaged corn is perfectly edible.

Horticulturist Jessica Walliser co-hosts “The Organic Gardeners” at 7 a.m. Sundays on KDKA Radio with Doug Oster. She is the author of several gardening books, including “Attracting Beneficial Bugs to Your Garden: A Natural Approach to Pest Control” and “Good Bug, Bad Bug.” Her website is jessicawalliser.com.

Send your gardening or landscaping questions to tribliving@tribweb.com or The Good Earth, 622 Cabin Hill Drive, Greensburg, PA 15601.

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Article source: http://triblive.com/lifestyles/jessicawalliser/12451638-74/stop-those-destructive-corn-earworms-in-their-tracks

Antique Garden Tools focus of exhibit at Montgomery Place



ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y. The Montgomery Place Campus of Bard College is hosting a new exhibit focusing on the antique garden implements used at Montgomery Place for vegetable gardening, landscaping, orchard care and ornamental floral display through Oct. 31.

The exhibit, “Historic Garden Tools of Montgomery Place,” is presented by the Landscape and Arboretum Program at Bard. It is free and open to the public and will be in the Greenhouse Tool Room of Montgomery Place, which is open daily from sunrise to sunset, including its gardens, arboretum and three miles of hiking trails with views of the Hudson River and Catskill Mountains.

Montgomery Place mansion tours are Saturdays through Oct. 21 at 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., and 2:30 p.m. Tours are $10 per person. No reservations are necessary. Pets are not allowed. For information, visit bard.edu/montgomeryplace or call (845) 752-5000.

Article source: http://www.dailyfreeman.com/general-news/20170701/antique-garden-tools-focus-of-exhibit-at-montgomery-place

East Main hosts gardening ‘challenge’

Buena Vista recently welcomed 11 new gardens along East Main Street. 

The gardens are a project of the town of Buena Vista Beautification Advisory Board, designed and installed by Bearss Landscaping with support from Buena Vista Public Works. 

Community funded

The East Main garden project was made possible by the funding of $10,000 from the town of Buena Vista; a $5,000 charitable donation by Vertex/Madison House Presents/AEG; and $100 each charitable donations from CKS, Buena Vista Veterinary Clinic, Central Colorado Kitchens, Doumas Team at RE/MAX MVP, Buena Vista Dental Care, Elizabeth A. Gobble, CPA; The Lettucehead Food Company, The Evergreen Cafe, The Buena Vista Roastery Cafe and The Chaffee County Times.

The gardens are more than just beautiful, they are also intended to be educational.  Watch for the plant labels and new signs coming soon.

Inhospitable E. Main?

Located next to the curbs at the three main intersections of East Main, the 11 gardens are placed in rather inhospitable locations for growing plants.  

The locations are hot, dry, windy, subject to invariable foot traffic, high-altitude short growing seasons and likely to become a meal to large and small meandering wildlife who will, on the right occasion, eat anything despite what the plant labels may say.

The gardens have to be tough, xeric and nibble-resistant.  It is a challenge to garden anywhere in Buena Vista, much less along East Main Street curbs.  

These curbside, xeric, deer- and rabbit-resistant, educational gardens include the plants that most meet these particular requirements. 

Local list is BV specific

Local experts have cultivated the list of ground covers, perennials and decorative grasses that stand the best chance of success in Buena Vista. 

The plants will be signed.  Buena Vista residents can see what is growing well, what they like the look of, and hopefully as a result, will be able to be more successful at their own landscaping efforts. 

A lot of people just don’t know where to start when it comes to landscaping in Buena Vista.

Many people want low-maintenance landscaping, they want to conserve water and replace plants less often. 

Once the signs are installed in the gardens, the signs will direct onlookers to a link on the town’s website with a complete list of plants used in the gardens and a list of shrubs and trees that are most suited to grow in Buena Vista. The list was created by the Buena Vista Tree Advisory Board.  

It’s xeric, not zero

There is a myth about xeric landscaping otherwise called xericscaping, that it is simply landscaping with rock so that no water is required.

The term for no-plant landscaping is actually called zeroscaping.  The two words sound similar but are very different.

Xericscaping is low-water landscaping. Curbside gardening is a concept that is being used in various communities to fill public spaces with plants that otherwise sit barren, such as the weed or gravel filled areas next to curbs. 

Those particular spaces require xeric, tough plants to survive. The Beautification Board and Public Works will be keeping a close eye on the new gardens until they become established. This summer the new plants will require extra water and care. 

Once the plants become established, they will require less water and care. 

Buena Vista Public Works cares for the town flowers and the new gardens. Questions and comments can be directed to the Beautification Advisory Board, contact information is on the town website buenavistaco.gov.

Duprey is a longtime member of the Buena Vista Beautification Advisory Board.

Article source: http://www.chaffeecountytimes.com/free_content/east-main-hosts-gardening-challenge/article_01e4eb1c-5c68-11e7-b16a-fb1a0f3f81f4.html