July 18, 2014 |
Yes, the kids are learning how to slice and dice, why a nicely set table is important, and the difference homegrown produce can make to health and well-being. But Teen Leadership Corps, an unusual summer program at Awbury Arboretum in Germantown, is about much more: Good work habits, interpersonal and leadership skills, possible job opportunities, and "green" enterprises, such as a farmer's market or herbal-products business. "It's about meaningful work and growing leaders," says Anna Herman, one of its founders.
June 24, 2014 |
Visiting the other Barnes icon - the arboretum, not the art museum - just got a whole lot easier. For the first time, the 12-acre landscape on North Latchs Lane in Merion is open to the public on weekends with none of the old constraints on visitation. No more reservations. You can just show up, pay $5 admission, as opposed to $15 when the art was there, and park free instead of shelling out another $15. More tours, more programming. You can even bring a picnic lunch. "Instead of being the place you keep people out of - which, in some ways, is part of our history - we want to be a place that welcomes you," said Margaret B. Zminda, acting director of the Barnes Foundation, which oversees the horticulture and the art that moved in 2012 to a new site on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.
June 20, 2014 |
After nine years as director of the Temple University Ambler Arboretum, Jenny Rose Carey announced her resignation Wednesday, effective June 30. In an interview, Carey, a garden historian, says she hoped to do research, writing, and lecturing around the country and overseas. She has two books in mind, both in search of publishers - one about early-20th-century gardens in the Philadelphia area and the extraordinary women who designed and cultivated them, and another about her own garden in Ambler.
April 3, 2014 |
Rachel Brudzinski got her first job with a tree-care company when she was 18. She liked the secretarial work, but deep down, she thought the guys were having all the real fun as they went out day after day to climb and trim the trees. So she worked her way up - literally. "I was always jealous watching the guys going out and doing tree work," Brudzinski said. "One spring, I said, 'I want to do it. Teach me how.' There was a little bit of resistance, because they said, 'No. This is a boy's job.' " Brudzinski eventually got her training and joined the men in the trees.
November 23, 2013 |
The shadows of our walking selves are huge and distorted, like giants moonwalking in a fun house. Who knew Jenkins Arboretum could be so entertaining on a mild afternoon in autumn? Its 46 acres are gently tucked into a residential neighborhood in Devon, not far from the Route 202 raceway, where everyone, it seems, considers speed limits optional. You can hear the traffic deep inside the garden, but the sound is nicely muffled, like the muted landscape of this quiet season and place.
August 26, 2013 |
The monarch butterflies at the Tyler Arboretum were about a week old, so it was time for them to move on. About 60 orange-and-black monarchs, freshly emerged from their chrysalises, were tagged and released into the wild at the arboretum's Butterfly Festival on Saturday. Over the next several weeks, the delicate insects will flutter about 2,500 miles south and then west before settling in a central Mexican mountain range with millions of others, the longest migratory journey of any North American butterfly.
February 24, 2012 |
On 55 acres of historic landscape in the heart of urban Germantown, the yellow aconite is blooming, the snowdrops and purple crocuses are up, and you can sense the fragile promise of spring. That's a way of thinking about Awbury Arboretum, too, as it looks to reinvent itself - yet again. This grand old estate has new leadership and big plans: To stabilize finances, to work with the neighborhood and local schools, to tackle long-standing maintenance and organizational problems, and to reassert ownership of what Christopher R. van de Velde calls "our primary mission - the care and feeding of the landscape.
February 10, 2012 |
Curious about what some of the public gardens and arboretums in the Philadelphia region are planning for 2012? Here's a preview: Awbury Arboretum in Germantown has a new community apiary - three hives outside and a demonstration hive inside the Francis Cope House. A 10-session beekeeping course is under way and a 4-H beekeeping club is planned, as are honey sales. Beekeeper Anaiis Salles suggested the apiary because "Awbury has underutilized green space, plenty of room for hives, it's easy to get to, and has a really nontoxic environment.
January 20, 2012 |
Eavesdrop in a garden, and what do you hear? Not a lot of narrative. Mostly exclamations over the beauty of something and curiosity about what it is, in and around the absorbing silence. So it is that Paul W. Meyer has "written" a new book about the Morris Arboretum in Chestnut Hill with no text, just photographs, most taken over the last eight years. Its title is a straightforward Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania Through the Lens of Paul W. Meyer. "It's meant to be a walk through the garden," explains Meyer, 59, a self-taught shutterbug who has worked at Morris for almost 36 years, the last 21 as director.
December 16, 2011 |
Maggie Knapp is about as lean and fit as a 50-year-old woman can be. And no wonder: She's spent literally half her life working outdoors at Jenkins Arboretum in Devon, where she's the head gardener. "Working outdoors" sounds as if she's leisurely raking leaves. Knapp does that, yes, but she also splits wood, chases trespassing deer, mans the snow plow and wields a steady chain saw. She prunes, plants, propagates, and weeds - and hauls a yeoman's load of mulch. You can't miss her. Spend even an hour at this 46-acre public garden, and she'll whiz by you in a golf cart, troubleshooting and problem-solving along 1.2 miles of paved walkways.