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Archives for January 28, 2018

Downtown Beaver Dam plan unveiled to fellow enthusiasts

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Life is Good in The Cove

Only eight homeowners get to live in The Cove, a private gated community off Old Hammond Highway near Tara. If you’d like to join that exclusive group, the home at 2131 Cove Court affords the perfect opportunity. It’s a New Orleans style beauty with class and impeccable taste.

Heart pine floors, Old St. Louis bricks, a fountain courtyard and lamppost balconies front and back create that “Big Easy” feeling buyers covet today. All that and more sit on a corner lot in this one-street development that is convenient to everything Baton Rouge.

Brick parking pads and brick sidewalks leading to the front door give arriving guests a clue that something special lies ahead. The home’s entry doors lead into a small foyer with the formal dining room to the left.

A sea of stained antique pine flooring continues ahead and to the right in the living room, a wide space with a custom staircase running up the left wall. French doors and windows in the front view the neighborhood pond and fountain splashing just across the street. Bricks around the fireplace have a sack finish, and another set of French doors leads to the courtyard in back, where a circular iron staircase heads up to the master suite.

Yes, the master suite is on the second floor. In fact, the master suite is the second floor. The circular stairs and the home’s main custom staircase open to a vaulted upstairs living room. This big room has a fireplace and French door access to the suite’s balconies front and rear. The master bedroom, master bath and master closets are all large and impressive.

The bedroom is 21 x 20 feet and has big windows overlooking the neighborhood. Bath accommodations are opulent, with a 14-foot ceiling and a skylight above an oversized whirlpool tub that is the centerpiece of the bath. Opposing vanities are granite, with tall custom mirrors above.

The two master closets connect in the middle, sharing six sets of cabinets and hanging space for days. Measure this closet in acres, not feet. And for good measure, a big cedar closet is located on one side.

There are two bedrooms connected by a Hollywood bath downstairs, tucked away near the rear of the home.

The kitchen and keeping room are at the heart of this home, and no detail was overlooked. The kitchen has a big KitchenAid refrigerator, a Thermador gas cooktop, double wall ovens and a double ceramic sink on a granite island.

A butler’s pantry is between the kitchen and the formal dining room, and there’s another bar not far from the living room. The home’s laundry is large, with a convenient chute from the upstairs.

Outdoor spaces of this home are immaculate, even in the dead of winter. The owner took a trip to Epcot in Orlando and brought back ideas for landscaping. A four-tiered fountain is the centerpiece, and brick patios extend in several directions. A tall, ivy-covered privacy wall makes everything private.

This lovely and unique home also has a two-car garage, as well as a separate garage for another vehicle. A natural gas-powered generator will make sure there’s always electricity, and a sprinkler system will keep the landscaping green and healthy.

About this Home:


2131 Cove Court

Lot dimensions:

100 x 135 feet

Living area:

4,238 square feet







Marketing agent:

Leo Desselle,

Pennant Real Estate

Contact phone:


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2018 Home Show vendor: Shem’s Landscaping – Quad

— 14400 Coyne Center Road, Milan.

— 563-529-4211,

— Answers submitted by Ryan Shemek.

What products and services do you offer?

We specialize in retaining walls, patios, and I’m a horticulturalist, so we do landscaping around houses also. 

How did your business get started?

I got started when I was 15. I took care of some yards in a neighborhood, then it branched out to more and more of their friends. I’m going on 25 years of working for myself in the landscaping field. I still enjoy it because of meeting new customers, and every job is a different challenge.

What are some of the latest trends in your industry?

We tear out a lot of old timber walls and railroad ties and replace with blocks that don’t fall apart. Around houses, boulders have been growing in trends, which I incorporate ornamental grasses around (Karl Foerster variety).

What will you be showcasing at the Home Show?

My display is a patio with sitting wall and pillars. I use a Keystone product in almost all my walls. I use Keystone products because of the 115-pound block that is engineered great. The pin system makes a wall that when built right, will last forever. I’ll have one of the Keystone standard blocks on display to show that when we build a wall, we don’t mess around.

What about your business makes you most proud?

When you call Shem’s Landscaping, you’re calling me. I’m the one who comes to your house to look at the project, give you many ideas if needed, and a price that’s fair. Then when it comes to doing the work, I’m there with the guys working just as hard as the workers, making sure the project goes smooth and right. I pride myself on being able to drive around and see all of my projects, and I’m still proud of them.

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119 English Turn Dr. in English Turn

This listing reminds one of an English manor house: it is not only absolutely massive, but also very beautiful. It has mature professional landscaping consisting of plenty of trees, shrubs and bushes.

“This is an immaculately kept five-bedroom, four-and-a-half-bath home on the sixth hole of the English Turn golf course,” said Catherine Poche, the listing agent with Latter Blum Inc./Realtors. “A 20-foot high foyer flanked by a formal living and formal dining room leads to a spacious den with a wet bar.”

The beveled-glass double front doors lead into a room with a cathedral ceiling, a wide, wide staircase, a chandelier and polished wooden floors.

“The house was designed by eminent architect Ron Domin,” said Poche, “and there is a full bedroom and full bath downstairs.”

The dining room has an interesting treatment with a red ceiling and the kitchen has a granite topped serving island. Kitchen appliances include a cook top, dishwasher, disposal, double oven, dryer, microwave, refrigerator and washer.

“The kitchen has high-end appliances,” said Poche, “and the breakfast room opens to the screened porch.”

You could actually live in the master suite forever and never have to leave it there are so many amenities.

“The master suite includes his/her offices, his/her walk-in closets, a master bath with a coffee bar, dual vanities, a glass shower and a Jacuzzi tub,” said Poche. “There are three additional bedrooms upstairs all with en-suite baths.”

There is a lovely indoor patio room leading to an outdoor brick patio, and then into the massive yard. The view from the back yard is to die for: you can see a pond and the golf course. The wonderful feature of living on a golf course lot is that you’ll never have neighbors looking in your yard or house.

“The house also has a 2.5-car garage, a wine cellar, a butler’s pantry, landscaping with an irrigation system, a build out for an elevator and unlimited storage,” said Poche.

English Turn is a bend in the Mississippi River and is so named because in 1699, Bienville, coming downstream, met the British who had come up river to choose a site for a settlement. Bienville met the small English frigate, careened in a bend of the river, and demanded of the captain what he was doing in the Mississippi, and if he was not aware that the French had already established themselves in this country. The Englishman was much astonished, and replied that he was ignorant of the fact, and soon after retraced his steps to the sea.

English Turn residents today enjoy a peaceful, scenic environment, securely protected by limited-access and manned, gated entrances with home sites featuring various amenities and sizes. A drive through the 14 communities demonstrates the relaxed atmosphere and picturesque settings for homes with beautifully landscaped lawns and gardens, wooded settings, parks and playgrounds with children, a walking trail and views of the world-class golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus.

Views of the lakes, lagoons and golf course, pristine wooded walking trail, full featured parks, playgrounds and Tot Lots, a clubhouse, a butterfly garden and a garden club make this one of the most desirable communities in New Orleans. Surrounded by romantic verandas, an expanse of green lush lawns and flowering gardens, the 43,000 square foot English Turn clubhouse offers members and their guests golf, dining and country club living.

English Turn is conveniently located, close to shopping, dining, recreation and medical facilities. It’s located on the west bank of the Mississippi River but the Crescent City Connection is twin spans of multiple lanes with no toll.

In the immediate vicinity are shopping centers, a Super Walmart, office parks, a library, grocery stores, playgrounds, Ochsner Clinic, schools, restaurants, Sam’s Club, banks and veterinary clinics.

Angela Carll may be reached at

About this House


119 English Turn Dr. in English Turn

Living area:

4,608 square feet




Four full/one half


Cook top, dishwasher, disposal, double oven, dryer, microwave, refrigerator, washer, patio/porch, sprinkler system, on a waterfront on the sixth hole of the golf course, Microwave, Refrigerator Fireplace



Marketing agent:

Catherine Poche

Latter Blum Inc./Realtors

7039 Canal Blvd.

Mobile: 504-810-5603

Office: 504-282-2611

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Olympic landscape material produced at Renick farm – Beckley Register

As the world’s attention turns toward the Winter Olympic Games that are about to begin in Pyeongchang, South Korea, a Greenbrier County farm is already working with a Chinese firm on plans connected with the games slated for Beijing four years down the line.

Sunshine Farm Gardens, an internationally known 60-acre plant nursery, garden center and arboretum near Renick, recently concluded negotiations with Tam Associates to provide landscape material for several locations in China.

The West Virginia-bred and grown plants will be used in the landscaping of several Olympic venues in the 2022 Winter Olympics, as well as for another commercial project in Liaoning Province. The plants will be shipped to China this winter and grown to maturity at several Chinese nurseries.

Beijing’s municipal government recently announced that preparing for the 2022 Winter Games is one of its top three priorities for this year, according to a Friday report from Xinhua, the official state news agency of the People’s Republic of China.

Work began on one of three planned Olympic villages surrounding Beijing late last year and, more recently, construction of two new competition sites and renovation of existing sports centers commenced, Xinhua reported.

While the Olympics-related project is more high-profile than most for Sunshine Farm Gardens, the mountaintop operation has exported plants to virtually every First  and Second World country on the planet, the company’s president and founder, Barry Glick, told The Register-Herald.

He estimated that around 10 percent of Sunshine’s revenue comes from international sales, and at least 85 percent comes from domestic sales outside of West Virginia, leaving a little less than 5 percent from in-state sources.

“We’re bringing in money to this area, not just from out of state, but from out of the country,” Glick said.

Focusing on statements made by Gov. Jim Justice in the State of the State address regarding the American trade imbalance with China, Glick noted, “We are proud to be doing our part in reducing that deficit.”

Justice, who also owns The Greenbrier resort in nearby White Sulphur Springs, actually played a role in starting the wheels turning on Sunshine Farm Gardens’ deal to provide plants for the 2022 Olympics, Glick said.

Sunshine hosted a group of Chinese nurserymen and horticulturists sponsored by the West Virginia Nursery Landscape Association in 2012. The delegation spent the morning touring the gardens at the Renick farm and was then treated to a luncheon at The Greenbrier and a tour of the resort’s grounds.

Glick said it was that visit that led to the current project.

“Some things just take time,” he said.

That 2012 Chinese delegation “had a million questions” that were quickly translated by a WVU student brought in to facilitate communications, Glick said.

“They loved lunch at Draper’s (Café at The Greenbrier),” he added, noting that the resort provided the meal at no charge to the Chinese visitors.

“With what (Justice) said in the State of the State address, it’s like we’ve come full circle,” Glick said. “If not for his generosity, we wouldn’t have been able to get off to a good start on this process, and we might not be where we are today.”

• • •

Tam Associates is primarily interested in the plants that are, coincidentally, Glick’s passion — hellebores, also known as Lenten roses.

The plants are not roses, but evergreen perennials that thrive in the shade and boast flowers in a rainbow of hues shaped like bells or cups. They are called Lenten roses because of their growing season, which begins in winter and extends into spring, surrounding the season of Lent.

“(Tam Associates) liked them because they live over 100 years, they bloom in winter and they are great cut flowers,” Glick said.

The flowers will begin to bloom in January each year in their new Chinese home, he said, perfect timing for the Winter Olympics in February 2022.

The hellebores bloom somewhat later in their Greenbrier County home due to the altitude and resultant lower average temperatures at Sunshine Farm Gardens.

Glick said the farm’s thousands of hellebores grow across an area that ranges from a low of 2,920 feet above sea level to a high of 3,650 feet. On the afternoon he spoke with The Register-Herald, the air temperature at the farm was 32.5 degrees Fahrenheit, while the temperature in Lewisburg — about 30 miles away and at an elevation of 2,080 feet — was a balmy 38 degrees.


The 68-year-old Glick remarked that he doesn’t have employees at Sunshine; he has six “associates” who work with him and whose input he values but rarely heeds.

“I have the final say, but I listen to them,” he said. “I take things under advisement, but I’m usually right.”

He hastily added, “That’s not arrogance; that’s just the truth. I’m very good at thinking things all the way through before making a decision.”

Glick is a West Virginian by choice, not by birth, having grown up in Philadelphia. He moved to Greenbrier County in 1972, buying the 60 mountaintop acres that would become Sunshine Farm Gardens.

He was one of the “hippie homesteaders” who found their way to West Virginia as part of a “back to the earth” movement in the 1960s and ‘70s. Like many of his fellow urban refugees, Glick has neatly knitted himself into the fabric of the larger Greenbrier County community.

Though typically ensconced on the hillside where he has a bird’s-eye view of Cold Knob Mountain and is surrounded by nature’s bounty, Glick exercises his inner showman by presenting horticulture lectures all around the world.

“Having an audience is great,” the gregarious Glick said.

While he was always comfortable on stage, Glick said in his early days as a public speaker he felt he wasn’t doing a good job in his presentations.

“I knew I could be a better speaker,” he said.

To that end, he offered Cathey Sawyer — a gifted actor/singer/director who had just accepted a position at Greenbrier Valley Theatre — a trade of some of his prized plants for an evaluation and advice on improving his public speaking.

After listening to him speak, he said, Sawyer delivered her verdict in short order.

“She said I was not well-prepared, and I was not breathing from my diaphragm,” Glick said, explaining that poor breathing technique made him lose his breath toward the end of sentences, making his voice shaky.

The fixes to what ailed him were fairly simple, he said. He prepared index cards with his planned remarks, printing a one-word reminder — “breathe” — at the top of each card.

“Damned if it didn’t work!” he exclaimed.

Though he seldom books lectures in his adopted state, Glick is looking forward to an April 14 engagement practically in his backyard, at the Yew Mountain Center near Hillsboro in Pocahontas County. He will address attendees during a Wildflower Day celebration at the nature preserve/retreat center.

In an online preview of the event, Yew Mountain’s website ( bills Glick as a “native plant geek.”

It’s hard to imagine a higher compliment.

• • •

For more information about Sunshine Farm Gardens, visit


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There’s a (gardening) app for that

It’s no secret that winter is a gardener’s least favorite season. So while you’re dreaming of spring, why not check out some colorful new gardening apps for your phone or tablet? Your green thumb will thank you for scrolling when warmer weather hits!

1. Old Farmer’s Almanac Planner — One of the oldest gardening resources has gone techie with this app, recently updated in late 2017. Made for use on iPad or iPhone, this amazing tool lets you plan and design your garden at the touch of a finger. Add vegetables, herbs or fruit to a layout and move around to achieve the best plan. With full growing information on more than 190 plants and thousands of varieties, this app is worth the $7.99 price tag. Please note, though, that it’s not for flower gardening.

2. Perennial Match — Want to know if garden phlox will thrive next to your rose bushes? Perennial Match helps you plan your perennial garden before digging that first shovel full of dirt. iPad and iPhone users can create combinations of perennials and view the results immediately. You can also save your combos for future reference. At $4.99, this app will pay for itself with its extensive perennial reference library of more than 278 plants.

3. iScape Landscape Designs — Looking to add some curb appeal to your home with a landscaping project? iScape lets you overlay virtual flowerbeds, shrubs and trees on top of photos of your home so you can visualize your project before starting. This iPhone and iPad app is a subscription service for $4.99 per month or $49.99 per year (automatically renewed until cancelled).

4. Garden Squared — Can’t remember whether you planted celery or chard, eggplant or squash? Garden Squared is a simple app for Android users that helps you plan and keep track of what is planted where in your garden. Plan from a 1×1 plot up to a 4×8, and make notes about the progress of your plants. Not a lot of bells and whistles, but a great app for those who are already familiar with gardening and just want an easy place to journal and keep track of plants.

5. Leafsnap — Calling all amateur arborists! This free app is like having a virtual leaf collection in your pocket. Developed by researchers from Columbia University, the University of Maryland and the Smithsonian Institution, this free app uses visual recognition software to help you identify trees. Simply take a photo of a leaf on a white background, and the app will tell you what kind of tree it belongs to. It’s simply fascinating, and just might take you back to fourth grade when you were hunting down leaves for your leaf collection.

6. Fine Gardening — Looking to get lost in pages of beautiful gardens as it snows outside? Fine Gardening magazine has an app available for both iPad and Android tablet users. A free sample issue is included with the app. Written for passionate gardeners, Fine Gardening includes detailed instructions for creating healthy gardens, outdoor rooms and beautiful landscapes. Current print subscribers get the app for free; others can pay per single issue, monthly or yearly.

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