Member’s Only Garden Walk 2021

The forecast for the day of our walk was for rain. Our members came prepared with umbrella’s and rain gear. Luckily it didn’t rain all day and there were plenty of dry spells.

Our first garden was that of Maryann Bovio. This is what she had to say about her garden.

My garden is a mixture of lots of different things.  I have a teeny fairy garden. an elf area and a mixture of all different flowers that I enjoy watching grow.  There is also a small veggie garden.  There is a backyard gazebo, bird baths and feeders in different areas so I can enjoy watching them.  The front has a garden area around the tree and at the center of the front yard a flower garden with a flower filled bench.  

The next garden was Patti Chipman’s.

My garden is a hodge-podge of perennial plants, containers of annuals, and garden knick-knacks collected over the 32 years we have lived here.   There is no one theme to my small gardens.  There are many themes among them, like natives, cutting flowers, vegetables, containers, and stuff that some would call junk.  However, this organized chaos actually makes me peaceful and happy. 

Thru the years as I have learned more about plants, gardening, and design, I have moved plants around to make a more sensible landscape.  Struggling plants are not discarded before I move them several times until they find their “happy place.”  I have added many containers of annuals throughout to always have color when the perennials are no longer flowering.
My garden is far from professional but it’s mine and the birds, bees, butterflies, and other wildlife seem to enjoy it too!

The next garden we visited was one of the community gardens that our club maintains. Here is a brief history of this garden.

In the early years after our club was formed, the Village of Streamwood held a competition for a design for the Rahlf Woods garden.  One of our members, Bob LaBarre, submitted a design and won.  The garden was planted by the members of our Garden Club using plants from their own gardens and with plants left over from a plant sale.  Jill Fox bought fall bulbs a few times and they were also planted.  About 23 years later, the original garden design was long gone and plants and weeds made it almost impossible to maintain.  In 2020 we decided to start over.  All the plants were removed except for some Hostas and lilies. The beautiful Butterfly Bush was a surprise that we found while we were removing plants.  At the time the garden was designed there were many large rocks around the edge of the garden which also crisscrossed throughout the garden.  Originally the rocks constituted a dry creek bed.  It took quite some time and a lot of digging to uncover all the rocks.  One of our members, Julia Olsta, moved them and arranged them around the border and also created two tiers for the new plants.  Wally and Linda redesigned the garden using Veronica, Gaillardia, and Daisies that were purchased at Platt Hill Nursery.  The rest of the plants, Phlox, Cone Flowers, Bee Balm and Coreopsis came from Linda and Wally’s Garden.  Enjoy!

Kathleen Eddy’s garden was next on the walk.

The best features of my garden are in the backyard which includes a perennial flower garden for the pollinators, a vegetable/fruit/herb garden, a small pond with 2 Goldfish and a fairy garden. I enjoy decorating the garden using my sons (ages 30 and 32) discarded toys (dinosaurs and golf balls) and then rediscovering them the next spring when I clean up the garden.

A lot of my gardening ideas come from fellow members in the garden club. They inspire me to try different ways of gardening. Last year I tried espaliering 2 apples trees as a way to maximize garden space (growing the branches horizontally). This year I tried a hugelkultur (a mound of plant material as a raised bed). My garden is a work in progress. I hope you enjoy it.

Our last, but not least garden belongs to one of our newest members Lorrie Santella

This is our first year in the house and we are working to restore the beds that surround the backyard. The beds had been let go for at least 10 years and when we moved in last summer the weeds were over 5 ft tall.  There are a couple trees that stand above all the perennials, one service berry and a tree lilac. Centered in the yard is a majestic 70-year-old Maple tree that shades the whole yard. Some of the hardier plants were able to survive the lack of care over the years and were discovered beneath all of the weeds. We have enjoyed watching many perennials bloom this spring. Plants like Virginia bluebells, Clematis, Allium, Annabelle hydrangeas, garden phlox, various grasses, tiger lilies, peonies, and a wonderful variety of hostasAs you will see there is a ton of work to do to bring the gardens to their former glory but we are up for the challenge and have been enjoying the fruits of our labor. 

Our president gave all the gardens a thumbs up!