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Archives for September 12, 2017

Flutter into fall with Pike Nurseries’ special events, classes

Welcome the arrival of crisp fall air with a variety of classes and events at Pike Nurseries throughout September. As foliage begins to change and leaves start to fall, green thumbs can prepare for cool weather by learning to grow an edible garden and receiving the lowdown on landscaping basics.

Gardeners are also invited to join Pike Nurseries for a celebration to kick off the fall season, partake in a pumpkin giveaway and join gardening guru Walter Reeves for a live broadcast of his weekly radio show.

Intro to Growing Your Own Food

Growing food, whether in a backyard garden or small containers on a balcony, can be rewarding and economical. In this free, beginner-level class, the experts at Pike Nurseries will share the basic steps of starting an edible garden and what gardeners should plant now for a fall harvest. Attendees to this tasty event can also enjoy complimentary refreshments and enter a drawing for a free prize from Pike Nurseries.

The Intro to Growing Your Own Food class will be Thursday, Sept. 14 at 6:30 p.m. at the West Cobb store, 3431 Barrett Parkway NW, Marietta, 30064.

Lawn Care and Landscaping Design Basics

Watch the neighbors turn green with envy after learning how to create luscious landscapes in this free gardening class. Pike Nurseries’ expert landscaping designers will provide basic landscape design tips and share tricks for maintaining a healthy lawn with timely advice on watering, fertilizing and more. Guests will receive complimentary refreshments and have the opportunity to enter a drawing for a free Pike Nurseries prize. Homeowners interested in getting professional assistance can stay after the class to talk one-on-one about how the Pike Nurseries landscaping team can help them create the ultimate lawn.

The Lawn Care and Landscaping Design Basics class will be Sept. 28 at 6:30 p.m. at the West Cobb store.

Grilling in the Garden

Celebrate fall with Pike Nurseries as customers enjoy storewide savings all day and free hot dogs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., while supplies last.

Pumpkin Giveaway

Visit Pike Nurseries on Saturday, Sept. 30 and receive a free pie pumpkin with any purchase of $25 or more, while supplies last. This perfectly petite pumpkin is ideal for pie-making or can be used for fall decorating.

Walter Reeves Lawn Garden Show — Live Remote Broadcast

The public is invited to take in the lively gardening conversations and professional tips from Walter Reeves and co-host Mickey Gazaway, Georgia-certified plant professional and Pike Nurseries associate, on Sept. 30 at the Suwanee store location, 1105 Peachtree Industrial Blvd, Suwannee, 30024. Attendees will be entered to win free giveaways and enjoy special savings. Free chicken biscuits and coffee will be also provided by Chick-fil-A.

For more information on the free gardening classes and events offered at Pike Nurseries, visit

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Winter Garden Subway debuts new design, drive-thru

WINTER GARDEN  What used to be a drive-thru credit union on Dillard Street is now one of the first drive-thru Subway locations in Central Florida.

For the last nine months, Jean Legere and his family — all local Subway franchisees — have gone through the process of renovating the credit union to house their new location. Previously, the restaurant was located just across the same shopping center, Tri-City Plaza.

Now, Legere said, it is the fourth location in Central Florida to debut Subway’s new Fresh Forward design. The new design, he said, is part of a brand effort to reinvent and revitalize. 

“Subway has been around for 50-plus years, and in order for the brand to survive as a whole, we have to think forward to the next 50,” he said. “Part of that is the revitalization of the brand itself in terms of décor, training of sandwich artists, finding different ways to engage our guests and really looking forward on what we’ve been able to accomplish.”

Legere and his family opened their first Subway location in 1988 in Ocoee. The Winter Garden restaurant was their second and opened in 1992. Legere remembers making his first sandwich at just 9 years old.

“My grandfather was cutting hair for Subway’s co-founder in Connecticut,” he said. “Peter Buck asked my grandfather if he wanted to open some restaurants in Orlando or San Diego. We were one of the first franchisees in the southeast to open up. From there, my grandparents had six kids, they all got in the business, and all their kids got in the business. My mother is second-generation franchisee, and my brothers and I are third-generation franchisees.”

When it was time to renovate, the choice to move to a location that already had a drive-thru was an opportunity they couldn’t resist. Additionally, only one of every five Subway shops in the United States will feature the Fresh Forward design.

“This is our best store,” Legere said. “It’s one of our oldest, best-running stores. We figured that adding the drive-thru and almost tripling the space (was well worth it). It’s been one of the longest build-outs we’ve ever experienced.”

Legere’s previous restaurant, he said, encompassed about 970 square feet. This one is just under 2,200 square feet, with the drive-thru included.

Features unique to the new design include self-ordering kiosks, touchscreen beverage machines with flavor-customization capability, a digital menu display, a new panini press, new sauces, new décor, LED lighting, in-store WiFi and USB charging ports.

The family also works in the community with multiple schools and maintains partner-in-education partnerships with many of them. They feature a Subway Scholar Athlete of the Month, where they work with the schools to highlight student-athletes with good grades and reward them with a gift card.

The main restaurant is now open, and the drive-thru is set to be completed and ready for guests to use soon.

“I want to engrain the community into this restaurant and build on what we’ve accomplished the last 20 or 30 years in this area,” Legere said.


Contact Danielle Hendrix at [email protected].

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West Bridgford woman wins multiple awards and launches a new garden design business!

A West Bridgford woman has launched a garden design business after winning two top awards for her green-fingered studies at Nottingham Trent University.

Sophie Williams opened Sanctuary Garden Design this summer after completing her two-year Foundation degree (FdSc) in Horticulture.

The 36-year-old aims to blossom in her new career after being awarded the Boots Company Cup for Top Student on the FdSc Horticulture course.

She also won the Newark Notts Agricultural Society Award for Top FdSc Student at NTU’s Southwell-based School of Animal, Rural Environmental Sciences.

Sophie said:

“It’s fantastic to be recognised by both national and local organisations and companies, as well as the university,” said Sophie. “I decided to pursue a new career in horticulture and garden design, following ten years as an environmental consultant. I’m passionate about gardens and gardening, plants and creative design. From a very young age, gardening has always helped me to relax. I think garden design is my perfect career.”

Sophie’s new business venture is, she says, all about creating “beautiful, inspiring and therapeutic” sanctuaries for her clients to enjoy. “It is difficult to get away from the pressures of our hectic lives, so it’s important to create a space that can help people switch off from the rest of the world. Whatever the size of garden or the budget, I aim to deliver the perfect environment to relax in, entertain and find yourself.”

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Berkshire Botanical Garden announces landscape design competition

STOCKBRIDGE, Mass. — Berkshire Botanical Garden announces the launch of a landscape design competition to select a designer or design team who will help create a new Entry Garden for the newly restored and expanded Center House located on Route 102 in Stockbridge, Mass.

The call for design proposals is open to landscape design students currently enrolled in an accredited landscape architecture program in the United States and Canada. The deadline for registration is Sept. 22, with design proposals due on Oct. 20. Honorariums will be awarded to the winning designer and two runners up, selected by a five-member jury made up of independent designers, horticulturalists, and landscape architects.

Berkshire Botanical Garden is not-for-profit, membership-supported, educational institution. Its 27 gardens in hardiness zone 5b contain plant collections considered among the oldest in the region. The Garden’s Center House, which dates in part to the 1700s, will reopen later this year as a multi-purpose building containing galleries, a teaching kitchen, a botanical library, classroom, and office space. The 4,000 square foot Entry Garden area will become the new gateway for tens of thousands of annual visitors touring the Garden, attending special events on BBG grounds and inside the Center House, and participating in BBG’s varied horticultural and educational programs that take place year-round.

A complete outline of the competition is available at:

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Monroe working on Lake Tye Park Park master plan

The city of Monroe is preparing for the future of a popular community park and the addition of another.

Master planning is about to begin for Lake Tye Park and approximately 140 acres owned by Cadman Inc., located near the Sky Valley Food Bank, Monroe Boys and Girls Clubs and Skykomish River Park. The latter will be transferred over and developed sometime after the process ends, said Monroe Parks and Recreation director Mike Farrell.

The Monroe City Council approved Mayor Geoffrey Thomas to sign a consultant agreement for the design of two separate plans in July with Seattle-based HBB Landscape Architecture. The concurrent projects are accounted for in the 2017 budget and costs are capped at $130,000. Farrell said the money is coming from Monroe’s parks department Capital Improvement Project fund.

The next step will be to seek guidance from the public. The city has put out a survey, and a “Pop-Up Studio” will be held 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. followed by an open house 6-8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Sept. 15-16, at the Monroe Boys and Girls Clubs.

Farrell said both sites have similarities, such as water access, close proximity to neighborhoods and the potential to connect to regional trail systems. Each is also distinctly different, he said.

Attendance at Lake Tye has been growing, Farrell said. People are trying out new sports on the 40-acre lake, such as paddle boarding, and more regional events like wakeboard competitions and 5K runs on the 1.5-mile loop are being scheduled, he said.

Farrell said the increased use has put some pressure on facilities. The list for potential renovations also has been expanding. All are motivators for the city’s decision to create a new master plan for the park, he said.

Some of the final proposal for the 64-acre property will likely include refinement of what is already working, Farrell said. Hopefully some new ideas will come from the master plan project. He suggested landscaping, improved parking, new pathways and additions to the beach area, but the city wants to hear from the community, he said.

“It makes sense for us to go through this planning process to make sure we are designing something where we minimize conflicts, and we are actually able to add diversity of experiences at the parks and also address the changing demographics and the interests of our community,” Farrell said.

A number of other improvements are already detailed in Monroe’s 2015-2035 Comprehensive Plan, Farrell said. One will be to turn the natural grass fields, which have seen their share of wear and tear from soccer, lacrosse and football events, into all-weather turf fields, he said.

Lake Tye Park’s skate park was upgraded within the past two years, and the playground was leveled and reconstructed to have inclusive features for all ages this spring.

The last time Monroe established an entirely new facility was about eight years ago, Farrell said.

Monroe Rotary Park opened in 2008. The Monroe Rotary Club led fundraising efforts to pay for the ADA-accessible, all-weather youth baseball fields.

The Cadman site is essentially a blank slate for Monroe, Farrell said.

A master plan for the property was prepared in 1998 by Cadman Inc., Farrell wrote in an email. Once mining was complete, the Redmond-based company will convey the land to the city, per the terms for their use permit, he wrote.

Cadman is working with the Washington Department of Natural Resources to finish up reclamation of the site while the master plan is being completed, Farrell said. The handover is precipitating the future park’s master plan process, he said.

Farrell said he would like to see a loop trail constructed around the decommissioned mining pit, which now functions as a roughly 15-acre pond. He said he sees the wooded wetlands and shoreline habitat as an opportunity to install educational displays.

Flooding issues common to the area may limit options like playground equipment in some places, Farrell said. Once the master plan is complete, the city should have a better idea of environmental constraints, he said.

Newly arrived city administrator Deborah Knight said both parks could serve as a hub for residents and visitors wanting take advantage of the Sky Valley’s recreation opportunities. Monroe would be the place to start the day at and return to each night after spending time outside, she said. 

Knight said the city is very appreciative Cadman is donating the property.

Farrell said the parks could add links to the Centennial Trail and Sky to Sound Water Trail, which will stretch from the north and south forks of the Skykomish River, to merge with the Snoqualmie River and make its way out to the Puget Sound.

Farrell said the costs for implementing the master plans are unknown at this time. Those estimates will likely be a part of the documents. Developing timelines for different phases will also be a part of the process, he said.

“We are excited to get this project going and really look forward to a lot of input from the community, so we can provide — through these master plan designs — what the public wants for our community,” Farrell said.

Click here to take the city’s survey, and for updates on the master plans visit


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Fall Landscape Tips from Landscape Professionals

As summer is winding down, and temperatures begin to cool off, we know Fall is in the air. Back to school routines, busy schedules and changes to the landscapes are all around us.

There are three things to consider this time of year when it comes to your property:

Fall is for Planting. This is the best time of year to redesign your landscape and plant in your garden. Consider Fall your time for a landscape makeover, and get everything planted into the ground before in freezes. Use this time to plan for changes you would like to see, that you were unable to achieve this year. It is the season to put your gardens to rest, and plan for next year.

Fall also means it is time for spring bulbs. Bulbs need to be planted in the next few months, before the ground freezes. That way, once winter passes, your property will come to life in bursts of colors and flowers.

Fall displays! Although not so vast as summer annuals, there are still many choices to enhance your fall landscape through the colder months to comes. Mums, kale and cabbages to fall pansies, perennials and ornamental grasses are all popular choices. Combined with fall displays using pumpkins, gourds, hay and other seasonal ornaments, apple baskets, crates and Indian corn, they are a festive and impressive way to dress up your front lawn this season.

Scenic Landscaping can create the right combination to keep your landscape looking beautiful into the fall. From customized displays to garden enhancement services, we provide personalized landscape packages to fit every budget, style and property needs. We look forward to helping you achieve your landscape goals for 2018.

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Gardens of Remembrance offers ‘renewed optimism and hope’ on 9/11

The Gardens of Remembrance can be found within The Battery on Manhattan.
Photo: Jill Odom

Today marks the 16th anniversary of the Sept. 11th terrorist attacks, but if there is one thing this country has shown is that it is resilient and will not be daunted.

From the ashes of the attack many memorials arose, including the 9/11 Museum, 9/11 Memorial and One World Trade Center, also known as Freedom Tower, created as ways to honor the victims and ensure that the public would never forget this day.

One commemorative space that may not be as well known to the public, aside from New Yorkers, is the Gardens of Remembrance. It is tucked away within The Battery, which is a park on the southern tip of Manhattan and faces the New York Harbor.

This garden was created by renowned Dutch garden designer Piet Oudolf. The Gardens of Remembrance had its groundbreaking on May 8, 2003. Officials from the city, community and even the Netherlands attended the event and participated in the first plantings to be part of the park.

“The Gardens of Remembrance are dedicated to those who lost their lives on September eleventh 2001, to the survivors and to all who come seeking renewed optimism and hope.”
Photo: Jill Odom

“A horticultural revolution in New York’s parks is beginning where the city’s history also began,” said Adrian Benepe, Parks Recreation Commissioner. “It’s an honor to have a world-class talent, Piet Oudolf, to create and plant the gardens, and we’re working to create an endowment to ensure it will thrive for many years to come.”

The 10,000 square feet park lies along the elevated portion of the Battery Promenade and has 6,000 plants from 113 species. A mixture of ornamental grasses and flowers wave along the waterfront, offering a place for a peaceful respite or somber reflection.

Oudolf is known for his use of perennials and native plants and the Gardens of Remembrance is no different, being created with sustainability and year-round aesthetics in mind. Instead of yearly installations of new plant material, this park has plants that come back stronger every year, just like how New Yorkers have recovered from the 9/11 attacks.

The Gardens of Remembrance commemorates the events of Sept. 11, 2001, including the victims, survivors and all who visit searching for hope. Oudolf’s design is a portion of his horticultural master plan that he was commissioned to create by The Battery Conservancy to revitalize the park.

This tribute to 9/11 victims and survivors was made possible by a $400,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and a $1 million grant from the Verizon Foundation to establish an endowment fund for the Gardens of Remembrance.

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HURRICANE IRMA: Outages, mall opening, debris pickup in Gardens

Pockets of Palm Beach Gardens homes remained without power Monday, as city crews and residents began clearing the huge trees and limbs Irma uprooted or ripped down, occasionally taking power lines with them.

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