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Archives for December 9, 2017

Parks & Rec approves Garden Club’s Waveny garden plan

The Parks and Recreation Commission unanimously approved a plan for the formal garden adjacent the Waveny mansion at its monthly meeting Dec. 6. The plan and its $40,000 funding is a partnership between two local nonprofit organizations — The New Canaan Garden Club has designed it and will find half the cost, and the Waveny Park Conservancy will fund the other half of the cost.

The plan still requires approval of the Board of Selectmen, Board of Finance and the Town Council.

Tori Frazer of the Garden Club addressed the Commission and described their proposed design and planting plan as “timeless and classic,” “low maintenance,” allowing for future maintenance of the hardscape, and fully funded.

The design accepted by the Commission is said to represent a renovation and renewal of the formal garden, and not a restoration of the garden that was designed for the Lapham family by the Olmstead landscape architecture firm in the early 1900s, according to minutes of the Commission’s Nov. 8 meeting. It is said to be derived from 16th century Europe. Plantings are to include boxwoods, rhododendron, hydrangea, and a variety of others.

The walled formal garden — sometimes referred to as the parterre garden — is between the mansion and the sledding hill.

The Garden Club’s plan was strongly opposed by resident and landscape architect Keith Simpson along with his associate Bill Pollack, who both contended that the garden is of such historical significance that the layout of the plantings should emulate the original Olmstead design to the extent possible. Simpson voiced his opposition at the Nov. 8 meeting and Pollack delivered at least two letters to the Commission.

Neither Simpson nor Pollack addressed the Commission on Dec. 6.

Adding intrigue to Simpson’s opposition is that he is a member of the board of the Waveny Park Conservancy, and that board is supporting the Garden Club’s plan in word and with funding. Hence, Simpson’s opposition was from himself as an individual and not as a representative of the Conservancy.

According to a Conservancy spokesperson Simpson had an opportunity to collaborate with the Garden Club in the garden project and did not do so.

Parks and Recreation Commission Chairman Sally Campbell is on record as saying she worked for two years with the Garden Club as they were planning their design, and she waited for an alternative plan to be submitted from Simpson. His plan is dated Nov. 2, 2017, one week before the Nov. 8 Commission meeting which had a presentation from The Garden Club on the agenda.

The primary planting of Simpson’s plan is boxwoods, as in the Garden Club’s plan. A major difference between the two plans is the layout of the plantings. The Garden Club’s design calls for three square groups of boxwoods and hydrangea on both sides of the center walkway — six total. The Simpson plan calls for a large irregular rectangle on both sides of the center walkway — two total — which are closer in design to the Lapham’s garden and to the garden that exists today.

The garden design presented by The Garden Club to the Parks Recreation Commission.

Article source: https://ncadvertiser.com/112464/parks-rec-approves-garden-clubs-waveny-garden-plan/

Heatherwick faces conflict of interest allegations involving London’s …

Heatherwick faces conflict of interest allegations in London’s Garden Bridge project. Rendering of the proposed Garden Bridge as it crossed the Thames. (Courtesy Heatherwick Studio)

Alternate rendering of the proposed Garden Bridge as it crossed the Thames. (Courtesy ARUP)

Rendering of the bridge’s green walkways. (Courtesy ARUP)

Renderinf of the Garden Bridge from London’s South Bank. (Courtesy ARUP)

London-based designer Thomas Heatherwick is now facing conflict of interest questions after it was revealed that he was listed as the sole founding member of the Garden Bridge Trust, the charity responsible for organizing the nearly $268 million Garden Bridge project (which was canceled in April), and also participated in some of the trust’s meetings and decisions. Previously, Heatherwick had denied any affiliation with the charity and insisted in media appearances that he was “just the designer.”

As first reported by The Architect’s Journal, Heatherwick, the bridge’s chosen designer, is not only listed as the only founding member of the Garden Bridge Trust, advocating for the creation of the trust, but also actively promoted the selection of some of its leaders, and lobbied and fundraised for the project locally and abroad. According to the studio, the founding member status is an honorary title bestowed upon Heatherwick. Still, questions remain as to whether the design contest held by Transport for London (TfL), the project’s original client, was held in good faith, as Heatherwick’s proposal ultimately ended up winning, and whether the procurement process was fair. Questions have also arisen over how approximately $62 million was spent on the project before it had even broken ground.

Proposed as a public-private partnership in 2012 and backed by then-mayor of London Boris Johnson, the Garden Bridge would have spanned 1,200 feet and connected the city’s South Bank and Temple area to the north. Covered by over 270 trees and approximately 100,000 plants, the bridge would have also featured a frilled, arcing superstructure that actress Joanna Lumley, an early advocate of the project, compared to the mountain gardens of Malaysia.

The original proposed site. (Courtesy Transport for London)

Despite the oasis-like nature of the project, questions over how funding for the pedestrian-only bridge would be raised had dogged the development since its conception. The bridge officially became a private project in 2013, with the newly-formed Garden Bridge Trust responsible for private fundraising and running the Garden Bridge once it was completed. Despite the trust raising over $92 million in private funds, Sadiq Khan, the newly elected mayor of London, declined to contribute more than an earlier pledge of $80 million, after costs had ballooned from an initial $80 million to the final $268 million. With questions over how openly accessible the bridge would be, as well as the ultimate benefit to the public, the controversial development was canceled.

A Garden Bridge Trust spokesperson told The Architect’s Journal, “‘Thomas Heatherwick’s role as a Founding Member means that he is one of the 12 company Members of the Charity, all of whom hold collectively a small number of powers limited by the Companies Act 2006. The position of Founding Member has no special power or rights attached to it and is simply a title.”

Similarly, a spokesperson for Heatherwick Studio told the Journal, “It’s well known that the studio’s role on the Garden Bridge was first as paid designer, and second as voluntary advocate.”

However, British politicians are calling for a full accounting of the process and how the funds were used.

Article source: https://archpaper.com/2017/12/thomas-heatherwick-conflict-interest-garden-bridge/

New Tacoma sculpture garden highlights works of Auguste Rodin

The LeMay Collections are perhaps better-known for their collection of vintage automobiles. But a new sculpture garden devoted to the works of French sculpture Auguste Rodin

Rodin is perhaps best-known for his 1903 sculpture “The Thinker.” A version cast from Rodin’s original foundry plasters—that is, formed in the 1990s, but from the actual mold sculpted by Rodin—sits along one of the garden’s paths. (The original sculpture, appropriately, still sits in the sculpture garden outside Musée Rodin in Paris.)

The garden, designed by Seattle firm Weber Thompson, winds through a 100-year Douglas fir forest on the grounds of historic military academy Marymount. In a nod to the history of the grounds, Weber Thompson used some materials as old as the forest and the casts. Wood was salvaged from century-old pickle barrels from Tacoma’s Nalley Foods pickle plant became two trellises bookending the garden’s path and benches along the way.


Courtesy of Weber Thompson

The garden also includes casts of Rodin’s “Eve” and “The Age of Bronze.” In a release announcing the garden, Weber Thompson noted that Rodin frequently used the same figures in multiple compositions at different scales—something the firm said is highlighted in this setting.

“[N]ot many people know of [the LeMay family’s] appreciation for the artistry of industrial design or the extent to which the site is a tribute to the American story,” said Weber Thompson landscape principal Rachael Meyer in a statement. “Building on the juxtaposition between what is old and what is new, the success of the garden design is evident in how integrated the sculptures feel in the natural, forested setting.”

The collection had a soft grand opening on November on the 100th anniversary of Rodin’s death. It’s now open to the public. Access comes with a ticket to the LeMay Fine Art Collection: free for members, $15 for adults, or $5 for youth.

Article source: https://seattle.curbed.com/2017/12/8/16753700/auguste-rodin-sculpture-garden-tacoma

DECEMBER GARDENING TIPS – FROM OUR EXPERT

 

Dear Gazette Gardeners,

Winter is a very cold time of the year but can also be very beautiful with the frost and snow complimenting the rich winter plant colours. Despite the bad weather there is still plenty of work to be done in your garden.

Ponds and Wildlife

· Now is the perfect time to fix any leaks that you may have in your pond. While fixing any leaks, why not install a water heater to prevent the water from freezing? If you don’t have a water heater installed, hold a saucepan filled with hot water on top of the ice surface until it has melted through. Don’t break the ice as this can be harmful to any fish.

· To deter any peckish Herons, cover your pond in netting.

· Keep removing any loose leaves from the pond surface to ensure its kept clean and tidy.

· Clean and disinfect bird feeders and bird baths.

 

Lawn Care

Don’t walk on any frozen or snow-covered grass. This can damage the grass and create discoloured brown marks. If the weather is quite mild, keep cutting your grass if its continuing to grow. Just make sure you raise the height of the blades to avoid cutting the grass too short.

Top Tip: Did you know that Quality Street wrappers are made of cellulose, a form of wood pulp? This means that they can be put in your compost bin instead of your normal rubbish bin.

 

Plants

· Reduce watering and feeding of all plants as the days get shorter.

· To reduce the risk of fungal infections, vent conservatory and greenhouses out for a couple of hours on a mild day.

· Now is the perfect time to prune any climbing Roses you may have. Remove any damaged or diseased stems and tie any new growth to the support.

· Plant a Sarcococca confusa to add a beautiful colour and fragrance to your winter garden.

· Wheatgrass and bean sprouts can be sown now ready for the summer.

· Check any climbers are secured to their support using tree ties.

If you want a good structural evergreen plant with a splash of colour for the holiday period you can’t go wrong with Mahonia Charity. With pinnate leaves and lovely long yellow racemes of flowers they look fantastic at an otherwise dreary time of year.

 

Jason Harker

JASON IS A PROFESSIONAL GARDENER AND LANDSCAPER, AND OWNER OF JHPS-GARDENS LTD.
HE REGULARLY WRITES A PIECE FOR OUR WEBSITE, PLUS THE SENTINEL NEWSPAPER,
AND IS A GO TO EXPERT ON BBC RADIO STOKE’S GARDENING PROGRAMME.

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Article source: http://www.stonegazette.co.uk/2017/12/december-gardening-tips-expert/

DECEMBER GARDENING TIPS – FROM OUR EXPERT

 

Dear Gazette Gardeners,

Winter is a very cold time of the year but can also be very beautiful with the frost and snow complimenting the rich winter plant colours. Despite the bad weather there is still plenty of work to be done in your garden.

Ponds and Wildlife

· Now is the perfect time to fix any leaks that you may have in your pond. While fixing any leaks, why not install a water heater to prevent the water from freezing? If you don’t have a water heater installed, hold a saucepan filled with hot water on top of the ice surface until it has melted through. Don’t break the ice as this can be harmful to any fish.

· To deter any peckish Herons, cover your pond in netting.

· Keep removing any loose leaves from the pond surface to ensure its kept clean and tidy.

· Clean and disinfect bird feeders and bird baths.

 

Lawn Care

Don’t walk on any frozen or snow-covered grass. This can damage the grass and create discoloured brown marks. If the weather is quite mild, keep cutting your grass if its continuing to grow. Just make sure you raise the height of the blades to avoid cutting the grass too short.

Top Tip: Did you know that Quality Street wrappers are made of cellulose, a form of wood pulp? This means that they can be put in your compost bin instead of your normal rubbish bin.

 

Plants

· Reduce watering and feeding of all plants as the days get shorter.

· To reduce the risk of fungal infections, vent conservatory and greenhouses out for a couple of hours on a mild day.

· Now is the perfect time to prune any climbing Roses you may have. Remove any damaged or diseased stems and tie any new growth to the support.

· Plant a Sarcococca confusa to add a beautiful colour and fragrance to your winter garden.

· Wheatgrass and bean sprouts can be sown now ready for the summer.

· Check any climbers are secured to their support using tree ties.

If you want a good structural evergreen plant with a splash of colour for the holiday period you can’t go wrong with Mahonia Charity. With pinnate leaves and lovely long yellow racemes of flowers they look fantastic at an otherwise dreary time of year.

 

Jason Harker

JASON IS A PROFESSIONAL GARDENER AND LANDSCAPER, AND OWNER OF JHPS-GARDENS LTD.
HE REGULARLY WRITES A PIECE FOR OUR WEBSITE, PLUS THE SENTINEL NEWSPAPER,
AND IS A GO TO EXPERT ON BBC RADIO STOKE’S GARDENING PROGRAMME.

SHARE THIS NEWS
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on TumblrShare on Google+Email this to someone

Article source: http://www.stonegazette.co.uk/2017/12/december-gardening-tips-expert/

Tips for rejuvenating a neglected garden | TribLIVE – Tribune

Question: I recently moved to a retirement community, and I was recruited to the garden committee. The garden has been neglected, so the committee has been asked to revitalize it. There is a 60-yard border with a width varying from 2 feet to 9 feet. It is backed by a very nice split-rail fence. I dug in the garden this morning and couldn’t easily dig down more than about 3 inches. Should we have compost delivered and incorporate it, or should we have soil tests done first? Because the border is so long, should we use two soil tests, one for each half?

Answer: It sounds like you have a wonderful job ahead of you (and, no, I’m not being sarcastic). Renovating a garden border is a fun task, as long as you follow some basic guidelines.

You’re right to want to begin with the soil. Since you have such a shallow layer of friable soil on top of the bed, I would suggest focusing your efforts on amending the soil as soon as spring arrives.

Getting a soil test is a smart idea, though, before you tackle the task of amending the soil. If you’re just growing perennial and annual flowers, a soil test isn’t quite as important as it would be if you were growing fruits and vegetables, but it can still provide you with some very valuable information.

I would take one test for the entire bed, collecting small samples of soil every few feet down the entire length of the bed, mixing them together in a bucket, and then sending a small sample from that mixture in to the soil test laboratory at Penn State. You can get the soil test kit from the Extension Service by calling 412-263-1000. The cost is minimal. Follow the test results to add any necessary fertilizers or lime, as necessary.

Before amending the soil with an addition of organic matter, you may want to consider dividing and thinning any existing perennials in the bed, especially if they appear overgrown or their clump-size is very large. This will help rejuvenate them and improve blooming over the next few years. You should also be sure to remove any existing weeds; otherwise, they’ll just sprout up through the layer of compost you’re going to add in the next step.

After dividing the plants and weeding the bed, have a landscaper spread 2 to 3 inches of high-quality, commercially produced compost or leaf compost over the entire garden. If there are existing perennials in the bed, the crew will have to be careful not to dump the compost over the crowns of those plants, otherwise they could develop crown rot and die. Try to keep the compost a few inches away from any existing plants.

You do not have to work the compost into the soil with a tiller or shovel. The soil microbes will process it over time, working to mix it with the existing soil, and helping to release the nutrients held in it to the plants. This layer of compost will also act as a mulch, burying weed seeds and suppressing their germination, as well as helping to retain soil moisture and stabilize the soil’s temperature. Don’t add any more than 3 inches of compost, though, as a thicker layer may limit air exchange with the soil.

Throughout the spring, you can add more plants to the bed, if desired, by simply scooting aside the compost, digging your planting hole, planting the plant and then replacing the compost around the root zone of the new plant, again being careful not to cover its crown with compost.

Though this will not immediately improve your soil to a substantial depth, over time, and with yearly additions of one to two more inches of compost to the top of the soil, the bed will become loose and friable and much improved. Building good soil takes time, so be patient with it.

In the meantime, have fun selecting new flowers for your garden bed and don’t be afraid to mix annuals and perennials together to extend the bloom time of your border. Be sure to add some flowers that support native bees, butterflies and other pollinators, too.

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,” “Good Bug, Bad Bug,” and her newest title, “Container Gardening Complete.” 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.

Article source: http://triblive.com/lifestyles/jessicawalliser/13032226-74/tips-for-rejuvenating-a-neglected-garden

5 garden tips for this week, Dec. 9-15 – Santa Cruz Sentinel



1 Harvest replace: Continue harvesting winter vegetables planted in September and October. Replace those harvested completely, such as spinach, cauliflower, cabbages, radishes, beets and turnips. These new plants will be ready to harvest around Valentine’s Day, and then there will still be time to put in one more round, if you want. For plants that produce an ongoing harvest — peas, snap peas, Chinese peas and Swiss chard, for example — pick the edibles regularly to keep the plants productive.

2 Transplant directions: To transplant boysenberries, olallieberries and other cane berries, dig up rooted plantlets any time from now to mid-January. Shake off the excess soil, and remove all the leaves. Cut the stems back to 6 inches. Transplant to a sunny spot in rich soil, and keep the ground moist to give them a great start.

3 Water now, not later: Keep watering indoor poinsettias for a few more weeks, so they retain their holiday beauty. Then after the first of the year stop watering them so the plants go dormant. They will drop their leaves. After that, keep them in a cool area protected from frost and irrigate only enough to prevent shriveling until they can be planted in the garden in March.

4 Merry Christmas, cactus: Christmas cactus looks great now in full bloom — as long as nighttime temperatures remain between 50-55 degrees F and they have darkness for 12-14 hours daily. Beware that normal indoor conditions kill undeveloped buds and shorten the flowering period. To prolong their beauty, take them outdoors every evening to a protected but cool, dark place then bring them back inside in the morning. Continue feeding Christmas cactus with liquid flowering plant food, even in full bloom, and keep the soil mix continuously moist.

5 Make the cut: After your chrysanthemums finish blooming, cut them down nearly all the way to the ground. They will start growing back in spring and look even better next year. Continue raking leaves that fall from other plants. You can add them to your compost pile, as long as you dispose of any diseased foliage first.

Article source: http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/lifestyle/20171207/5-garden-tips-for-this-week-dec-9-15