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The Gershman Y Presents Eco Art

May 15, 2012

On Thursday, May 17, the Gershman Y will debut two environmental art exhibits in its galleries. From 6 – 8 pm, attend a panel discussion with several of the participating artists—all of whom have developed eco-art projects nationally and internationally. These artists believe in the importance of talking about the ideas embodied in their work.

The one collection is called Turn Here: Artists Promoting Environmental Awareness. It features artists who use signage and other graphic approaches as a strategy for promoting eco-awareness, including work by Xavier Cortada from his time in the North and South Poles.

The second grouping is titled History of the Future: Photographs from the Canary Project.

The Gershman Y sees this evening as a chance for fresh and meaningful discussion of environmental issues that impact our community. Even if you can’t attend opening reception, the exhibits run to Sunday, August 12.

To learn more and to register, click here.

Make Mom Feel Special at Meadowbrook Farm

May 10, 2012

This weekend, enjoy a day out with mom and treat her to beautiful flowers or fresh veggie starts for her garden. Shop from a selection of gorgeous perennials and trees, Americana geraniums, calibrachoa, gerbera daisies, and lantana—plus, tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, and more for veggie lovers!

Or choose one of Meadowbrook’s Top Picks for Moms:

Gorgeous combination baskets and containers – a perfect addition to the front steps, back porch, or outdoor dining table.

Handmade black terra cotta flower pot with a kale design – locally designed and created for Meadowbrook by Heirloom Home and Design in Glenside, PA. Learn the full story here.

Meadowbrook Gift Cards are also available in any amount.

Earlybird shoppers on Sunday can enjoy free coffee and donuts from 10 am – noon (while supplies last!). See you at Meadowbrook! Click here for hours and directions.

Get Ready for “With Art Philadelphia”

May 8, 2012

PHS is proud to be one of ten city organizations and cultural partners that will tout Philly’s eclectic art offerings as part of “With Art Philadelphia,” a new, two-year campaign supporting Philadelphia’s varied visual arts scene and the many artists who make it the colorful canvas that it is.

With Art will go beyond the traditional definition of art to embrace the region’s bountiful gardens, high-fashion boutiques, and design must-sees. As horticulture is one of the forms of art that Philly does best, PHS will be the clearinghouse for information on gardens, arboreta, and other green spaces that are doing fantastic things.

We’ll keep you posted on upcoming events associated with this one-of-a-kind campaign. Until then, this video will give you an idea of what’s in store.

Tour Southern India with PHS in 2013

May 3, 2012


As we welcome back the PHS members who journeyed to Peru in search of orchids, we invite you to consider joining us for a fascinating exploration of southern India on our tour, “Sacred Stems: Teas, Spices, and the Power of Plants!”

Take a midwinter break next January 11 – 25, 2013, on a trip that will showcase the role of  gardens and plants in medicinal, religious, culinary, commercial, and leisure activities in India during the colonial era and after independence from Britain.

We will visit Mughal-style terrace gardens, British-inspired botanical gardens, and lively flower, vegetable, and spice markets. We will also visit colonial-era hill stations where tea, coffee, and spice plantations abound, and learn about current programs to help the thousands of small tea growers throughout India. At two botanical sanctuaries, we will explore current plant conservation and research activities.

Our comprehensive itinerary also includes some of South India’s most memorable sights, including the Amba Vilas Palace in Mysore, the serene backwaters of Kerala, and the Portuguese- and Dutch-influenced city of Kochi. Optional trip extensions to the Golden Triangle (Delhi/Agra/Jaipur) and to Kolkata will also be available.

Interest in this trip has already been piqued, and we don’t want anyone who wants to go to be put on a waiting list. Click here for the complete itinerary and registration information.

Flock to Gardens & Green Spaces this May

May 1, 2012

The Flower Show is fleeting, but the PHS team wants to connect you to beautiful gardens year-round. This month is especially exciting if you are a bird lover? From warblers to chickens to hawks, the wide world of birds is much-discussed in our May compilation of gardening and greening events in the Philadelphia region. You can even tour the home of bird-enthusiast John James Audubon on a trip sponsored by the Morris Arboretum.

Click here to learn about these (and other, more traditional) gardening and greening events.

If your mission is to spend time outdoors with the young people in your life, we’ve got a list for that too. There are even night-time events at the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, Tyler Arboretum, and the Delaware Center for Horticulture—so embrace your nocturnal tendencies!

Click here for the list of kids and family events.

Meadowbrook Farm Presents Plants You’ll Love!

April 25, 2012

The Meadowbrook Spring Open House on Saturday, April 28 can provide you with phenomenal plants to make this year’s garden your best yet! Below are some essential additions to your garden that will delight and dazzle you.

Lotus Amazon Sunset:  This bold and fiery (yet delicate and ornate) plant is perfect for hanging baskets, containers, and window boxes.  It is also beautiful hanging over a low wall like in the photo on the right. We love this plant because it reminds us of the bold colors and exotic forms found at “Hawaii: Islands of Aloha,” while being perfectly suited for the local climate.

Euphoriba Diamond Frost: This ethereal plant produces masses of pure white bracts above finely textured, apple-green foliage. It can add stunning texture and color to your garden, and thrives in partial shade. As you can see in the picture, the Euphoriba Diamond Frost has intricate blossoms that add whimsy to any garden.

Next up is a very special HGTV mixed container that will make its nationwide debut at the Spring Open House. The planting pictured above is called “orange bliss.” It is part of the Expressions line and is only available at Meadowbrook Farm (while supplies last).

Additional plants for you to fawn over include Nemesia, Diascia, Cuphea, Solenia Begonia, Geraniums, and Verbena. Plant lovers, rejoice! And come on out to the Spring Open House this Saturday! Directions, hours, and additional info on tours and kids crafts can be found at

Garden Clubs Present Plant Sales & Events

April 18, 2012

Garden clubs are a fun way to connect with local garden enthusiasts and plug into the horticulture scene in your area. Each spring many clubs hold plant sales and events, which are wonderful ways to meet club members and learn about involvement.

For example, why not stop by the Haddonfield Garden Club’s Annual Herb Sale?  The proceeds support the Garden Club’s many projects, and also help fund a special scholarship for a Haddonfield Memorial High School senior who plans to pursue horticulture as a profession.

Don’t forget the workshops and tours. In mid-May the Mount Airy Learning Tree offers its Hidden Gardens Tour of 10 gorgeous spaces—don’t miss it.

For a full list of sales and events (with dates, times and locations), click here!

What to do with Willows

March 28, 2012

Picture of pussy willow and curly willow cuttings

Are you among the many, many people who purchased pussy willow or curly willow at the Flower Show Marketplace? This perennial favorite is a versatile design element, but by now you may be wondering what to do with them.

Whatever you do, don’t throw them out! If you’ve been keeping the willow in  water, continue to do so—changing the water regularly. If you didn’t keep them in water but still have the cuttings, cut off an inch or so from the bottom and put them in water now. You have a very good chance that they’ll take up water, put out roots, and grow for you.

The curly willow makes a handsome small tree, and can be grown in a container and pruned back repeatedly to make a bush shape if you prefer. The pussy willow will reward you with little furry ovals every spring.

It’s nice to plant some Flower Show plants and enjoy Flower Show goodness all year long!

A Flower Show Volunteer Tells All!

March 20, 2012

If you struck up a passionate gardening conversation with a friendly, smart-as-a-whip woman at the Flower Show’s PHS Exhibit, it may have been Mia Mengucci.

We asked Mia about her Flower Show volunteerism and why she comes back year after year. In return she gave us not one, but 10 reasons (in no particular order, although she saved the best for last). Take it away, Mia!

I volunteer at the Flower Show because I…

  1. Get behind-the-scenes access to the world-famous Show
  2. Reunite with the “family” of volunteers
  3. Receive smiles and hugs-a-plenty
  4. Catch spring fever
  5. Find ideas on how to get my garden to look as good as the exhibits—but I still have a long way to go!
  6. Discover that sleep deprivation builds character
  7. People-watch for hours on end
  8. Can eat a pretzel with mustard and call it a complete meal—no time for relaxed dining!
  9. Share my first-hand experience and knowledge of all the wonderful things that PHS does for the area
  10. Meet wonderful people from around the world

Make Pele’s Garden YOUR Garden

March 15, 2012

People tend to leave the Flower Show inspired to get started on their home gardens and add life to their homes. When your green-thumb starts to itch, stop by the Meadowbrook Farm Post Flower Show Plant Sale on March 17 from 10 am – 5 pm.

Select plants from the Flower Show (including Pele’s Garden) will be available for purchase beginning at 10 am for card-carrying PHS members. The majority of these plants will be houseplants and suitable for moving outdoors once the warmer temperatures return. All sales are final and quantities are limited. No advance orders. Again, these plants are available exclusively to PHS members, so don’t forget to bring your membership card.

The first 100 members to arrive (and present their membership card) will be entered into a raffle to win a $100 gift certificate to Meadowbrook Farm. One raffle ticket per membership.

Meadowbrook Farm will also have a variety of early spring plants (pansies and bulbs) available, both for members and the general public. Members enjoy an additional discount on perennials!

You can also order herb and veggie starts from Meadowbrook, in person or online. There are over 350 heirloom vegetables and herbs to choose from. We think that the themed plant combos are particularly cool, from the Pizza Mix to the Lettuce Lovers combinations, there is something for any gardening goal.

It is never too late to become a PHS member! Members enjoy discounts year round at Meadowbrook Farm, the Flower Show, and beyond, and can feel good about supporting an organization dedicated to the environment and local communities. Click here or call 215-988-8800.

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