One of the first garden tours I took after moving to PA was to Jenkins Arboretum. It’s one of the few arboretums open free to the public 365 days a year from 8 am to sunset. Jenkins offers a variety of educational classes, tours, seminars, art exhibits, guest speakers, and annual plant sales open to the general public with discounts for members.
It was so beautiful and peaceful walking their garden paths of azaleas and rhodies. It was a welcome relief after a long, cold winter filled with stresses of moving, change, and adjustment. I wanted to recreate some of that same peaceful feeling at home, so we quickly joined as members and I attend events whenever possible.
The first class I took with my daughter was a hands-on container gardening class in early spring. We brought home 2 giant containers of perennials and put them on the patio wall. For awhile, those containers were the only splash of color in the yard until later when we added the first bed of hydrangeas next to the patio wall. The containers were filled with coral bells (heuchera,) wood asters, foam flowers, cardinal flowers, great blue lobelias and other native perennials.
Those original container gardens (pictured below) have since been dumped out to create a new perennial bed in the WAY, way, back part of the yard, which I now call Butterfly Hill. You’ll find out why later. 🙂
We still have many of those original Jenkins woodland plants and they have been moved and divided several times to other sites in the yard. Who doesn’t love free plants?
That first garden tour inspired my renewed love of gardening and the confidence to create a DIY repurposed backyard. It then led to a newer interest in blogging as a way to share those interests with other plant lovers and without boring my poor hubby to death with all my yammering about plants.
Do you have something outdoors that inspires you?