Le Tour des Jardins: the Swens garden


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You know you’re talking to serious gardeners when you learn they rented a U-Haul just to transport plants when they relocated from Charlotte, N.C., to Shreveport.

Stan and Boots Swens are lifelong gardeners who, as retirees, put in as much as seven to eight hours a day in their yard.

“I come up with ideas and Stan knows how to put them together,” Boots said. “We complement each other.”

Luckily, Stan is happy to be the muscle of the pair.

“I enjoy it. It’s not work. It’s like a labor of love.”

All that labor has created a lovely garden, one of six to be featured May 3-4 on Le Tour des Jardins, the annual garden tour of the Northwest Louisiana Master Gardeners.

The Swens bought their Green Acres Place home from their daughter – the couple had been stationed at Barksdale years ago and returned in 2010 to be near her. The backyard pavilion, trees and shrubs were already in place, but the swaths of color, pergola, five fountains, pond and garden accents are their contributions.

“Our garden is a reflection of Boots’ ability to design and put together a whole piece,” Stan said.

“I decorate my yard just like I decorate my house,” Boots said.

Le Tour des Jardins

  • What: annual garden tour sponsored by the Northwest Louisiana Master Gardeners.
  • When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 3 and 1 to 5 p.m. May 4.
  • The gardens: Jackie and Nancy Adcock, 5000 Highway 71, Shreveport; Stan and Boots Swens, 138 Woodvale Creek Circle, Bossier City; Louise P. Williams, 10886 Sunrise Pointe, Shreveport; Joyce Hooper, 9211 Oakley Drive, Shreveport; Brad and Michelle Everson, 856 Oneonta, Shreveport Steve and Renee Schoonover, 1311 Leonard Road, Shreveport.
  • Admission: $10 in advance at Citizens National Banks or by calling 318-698-0010; $12 the day of the tour at any garden.
  • Special feature: Garden Bazaar and plant sale at Pioneer Heritage Center, LSU-Shreveport.
  • Info: 318-698-0010 or www.lsuagcenter.com/nwlamg.

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