Le Tour des Jardins — Atchison garden

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Eight Shreveport gardens will be featured May 2-3 on the 2015 Northwest Louisiana Master Gardener Le Tour des Jardins.

Here’s a photo glimpse of the garden of Drs. Sharye and Steven Atchison, who live at 1367 Forest Creek, Shreveport, and a quick chat with Sharye:

How would you describe your garden to someone who has never seen it? “My garden is a collection of smaller gardens and spaces that invite exploration, relaxation and fun.”

Do you strive for a particular style? “My garden style is continuously evolving as I collect native plants, pass-a-longs and plants that attract birds and butterflies.”

What are a couple of things a visitor to your garden shouldn’t miss? “I like to show visitors my New Orleans courtyard-style secret garden which is a tranquil place to eat with the family and to relax. My other favorite destination is under the old oak tree. It is the view along the winding pathways that makes the destination special.”

Do you have a favorite plant or plants? What and why? “I have learned to treasure and protect our native plants of the South to help our wild life’s habitat.”

What’s the best garden advice/tip you’ve ever received? “Gardening is a continuous learning process that evolves through mistakes, dirty fingernails and lots of flower magazines.”

Why is having a beautiful garden important to you? “Gardening maintains my connection with my mom. She taught me to “stop and smell the roses.”  Early onset Altzheimers took her from me and gardening, but being surrounded by nature’s beauty makes me feel like she is still by my side.”

Coming tomorrow: Ben and Rhonda Tullos garden, the 2015 professionally designed garden.

 LE TOUR DES JARDINS:

  • When: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. May 2 and 1-5 p.m. May 3.
  • Gardens, all in Shreveport: Roy and Camille Millen, 8105 Captain Mary Miller Drive; Betty Wilson, 164 Grey Eagle; Don and Dottie Murray, 165 Grey Eagle; Ben Humphrey, 948 Boulevard St.; Dr. Steve Russell, 2530 Fairfield Ave.; Mike and Sheri Moritz, 7112 East Ridge Drive; Drs. Steven and Sharye Atchison, 1367 Forest Creek; Ben and Rhonda Tullos, 3025 Nottingham Drive.
  • Admission: $10 in advance by calling 318-698-0010 or at any Citizens National Bank. Tickets will be available for $15 at each garden on the day of the tour.
  • Special event: A Garden Bazaar will be held during the tour at the Pioneer Heritage Center at LSUS. Admission: free.
  • Info: 318-698-0010 or www.lsuagcenter.com/nwlamg.

 

 

Le Tour des Jardins — Russell garden

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Eight Shreveport gardens will be featured May 2-3 on the 2015 Northwest Louisiana Master Gardener Le Tour des Jardins.

Here’s a photo glimpse of the garden of Dr. Steve Russell, who lives at 2530 Fairfield Ave., Shreveport, and a quick chat with Steve:

How would you describe your garden to someone who has never seen it? “The garden is very European (French) and very formal, using shrubs that are sculpted.”

Do you strive for a particular style? “The plan of the original gardens is in my possession and I try to keep it exactly as it was designed. My garden is designed mostly like the Palace of Versailles in Paris, France.”

What are a couple of things a visitor to your garden shouldn’t miss? “The 150-year-old oak tree out front and the plans of the original garden that are on display. Take a slow walk through the garden and just enjoy the beauty.”

Do you have a favorite plant or plants? What and why? “Spiral and topiary shrubs. I enjoy pruning the shrubs.”

What’s the best garden advice/tip you’ve ever received? “Keep up with what needs to be done. Water regularly, prune.”

Why is having a beautiful garden important to you? “The gardens and my home complement each other. It is all done in early 1920s period. I travel a great deal to my favorite city, Paris, France.”

Coming tomorrow: Drs. Steven and Sharye Atchison garden.

 LE TOUR DES JARDINS:

  • When: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. May 2 and 1-5 p.m. May 3.
  • Gardens, all in Shreveport: Roy and Camille Millen, 8105 Captain Mary Miller Drive; Betty Wilson, 164 Grey Eagle; Don and Dottie Murray, 165 Grey Eagle; Ben Humphrey, 948 Boulevard St.; Dr. Steve Russell, 2530 Fairfield Ave.; Mike and Sheri Moritz, 7112 East Ridge Drive; Drs. Steven and Sharye Atchison, 1367 Forest Creek; Ben and Rhonda Tullos, 3025 Nottingham Drive.
  • Admission: $10 in advance by calling 318-698-0010 or at any Citizens National Bank. Tickets will be available for $15 at each garden on the day of the tour.
  • Special event: A Garden Bazaar will be held during the tour at the Pioneer Heritage Center at LSUS. Admission: free.
  • Info: 318-698-0010 or www.lsuagcenter.com/nwlamg.

 

 

 

Le Tour des Jardins — Humphrey garden

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Eight Shreveport gardens will be featured on the 2015 Northwest Louisiana Master Gardener Le Tour des Jardins.

Here’s a photo glimpse of the garden of Ben Humphrey, who lives at 948 Boulevard St., Shreveport and a quick chat with Ben:

How would you describe your garden to someone who has never seen it? “I have incorporated several statues, gazebos and fountains into large beds containing a great variety of plants. Always something to look at.”

Do you strive for a particular style? “Nope.  Just like trying different unusual plants.”

What are a couple of things a visitor to your garden shouldn’t miss? “The gazebo with large statues of the four seasons. The handmade picket fence and gates.”

Do you have a favorite plant or plants? What and why? “Daffodils (unfortunately not enough sun in garden to grow them good), bearded irises, daylilies.”

What’s the best garden advice/tip you’ve ever received? “Grow what you enjoy.”

Why is having a beautiful garden important to you? “When i purchased the property i could see the potential for a really nice garden. Enjoy having large patios surrounded by plants. Also, makes a very nice setting for small weddings.”

Coming tomorrow: Mike and Sheri Moritz garden.

 LE TOUR DES JARDINS:

  • When: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. May 2 and 1-5 p.m. May 3.
  • Gardens, all in Shreveport: Roy and Camille Millen, 8105 Captain Mary Miller Drive; Betty Wilson, 164 Grey Eagle; Don and Dottie Murray, 165 Grey Eagle; Ben Humphrey, 948 Boulevard St.; Dr. Steve Russell, 2530 Fairfield Ave.; Mike and Sheri Moritz, 7112 East Ridge Drive; Drs. Steven and Sharye Atchison, 1367 Forest Creek; Ben and Rhonda Tullos, 3025 Nottingham Drive.
  • Admission: $10 in advance by calling 318-698-0010 or at any Citizens National Bank. Tickets will be available for $15 at each garden on the day of the tour.
  • Special event: A Garden Bazaar will be held during the tour at the Pioneer Heritage Center at LSUS. Admission: free.
  • Info: 318-698-0010 or www.lsuagcenter.com/nwlamg.

 

NWLAMGs reveal tour gardens

This is what Ben Humphrey's front garden looked like last spring. Photo by Kathie Rowell.

This is what Ben Humphrey’s front garden looked like last spring. Photo by Kathie Rowell.

Need something to look forward to?

The Northwest Louisiana Master Gardeners will hold their annual spring garden tour,  Le Tour des Jardins, on May 2 and 3.

Nine private gardens will be spotlighted.

Here is a glimpse of the gardens featured on the tour:

Ben Humphrey Garden

This Highland neighborhood garden invites you to visit over the owner’s unique hand-made white fence surrounding the property. The gardens are filled with statuary, azaleas, ferns, hellebores, ginger, oleander, cannas and hanging baskets.

Dr. Steve Russell Garden

A formal garden planned and overseen by Dr. Russell and located in the historic district of Fairfield Avenue, featured a magnificent, more than 200-year-old live oak in the front. There are crape myrtles, a parterre garden of boxwood, hostas, agapanthus, camellias, dogwood and a fig tree.

Sharon and Mike Moritz Garden

This eclectic city garden contains everything from an herb garden in water troughs to a shade garden with a beautiful bed of ajuga groundcover and a bird-friendly area under large trees. Also impatiens, hostas, lamb’s ear, clematis, angelonia and much more.

Camille Millen Garden

This designer’s garden has a carefully laid out path with ferns and hostas to the koi pond filled with big, colorful fish. The outdoor garden room is filled with a hibiscus tree, evergreen red wisteria, red bananas, daylilies, crape myrtle, a trellis and a shade garden.

Betty Wilson Garden

This precisely planned garden in The Haven is filled with some very unusual plants. The shade garden has a zig-zag tree, evergreen red wisteria on an arch, roses and hydrangeas. Savannah holly and Foster holly line the path to the covered outdoor entertaining area.

Dottie and Don Murray Garden

This colorful garden has been planted for sun and shade. Under a pergola there are ferns, hydrangeas, liriope, begonias and Confederate jasmine. Toward the sunny garden are roses, butterfly bush, cosmos, pots filled with colorful annuals, and behind the fence is a small vegetable garden.

Drs. Sharye and Steven Atchison Garden

This Southern garden is centered around an immense sugar kettle fountain in the circle drive at their A. Hayes Town-designed home. As you enter the courtyard shade prevails with hostas, ferns, impatiens and another fountain. In the backyard around the pool and outdoor kitchen are roses, Annabelle and Limelight hydrangeas, azaleas, phlox and lantana. A bridge leading to a pond and red barn is encircled by althea, coneflowers, loquats, sycamore and muscadine vines. There is also a grove of D.D. Blanchard magnolias.

Rhonda and Ben Tullos Garden

A professional garden by Fleming Landscape and Irrigation and landscape architect, Scott Crane, the Tullos garden is set on an acre in south Shreveport. Gardens surround this newly built home giving it a true Southern flair.

A Garden Bazaar will be held during the tour at the Pioneer Heritage Center at

LSUS. Admission to the Heritage Center is free.

Tour hours will be 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 2, and 1 to 5 p.m. May 3. Advance tickets are $10 and can be purchased at any Citizens National Bank, or by calling the Master Gardeners office at 318-698-0010. Tickets may also be purchased at any garden on the days of the tour for $15.

Proceeds from the garden tour fund future Master Gardener projects and help promote the Master Gardeners’ mission to enhance the quality of knowledge for gardeners in the community.

For more information contact the Master Gardener office at 318-698-0010 or www.lsuagcenter.com/nwlamg.

 

Le Tour des Jardins: Williams garden

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Stroll through Louise Williams’ back yard and you’ll find roses, foxgloves, phlox, terrestrial orchids, coral honeysuckle, azaleas and a lovely Japanese maple.

What you won’t find is any grass.

When Mrs. Williams and her late husband moved from their former home with an acre lot to Southern Trace, they installed planting areas and pathways instead of lawn in the back yard.

She describes it as a variation of a cottage garden. You can see for yourself May 3-4 when it is one of six gardens features on Le Tour des Jardins, the annual garden tour sponsored by the Northwest Louisiana Master Gardeners.

“It’s passalong plants, perennials, things that repeat because it cuts your work down,” Mrs. Williams said.

The half-sun, half-shade exposure makes it possible for Mrs. Williams to grow just about anything. “I have leeway to play with plants,” she said.

She’s also nurtured the soil through additions of homemade compost.

“Things don’t grow unless they have good soil,” she said. “I believe in compost. I don’t put any meat in it, but I do put fresh eggs, old coffee grounds and clean out the vegetable drawer.”

And although she has a sprinkler system, she enjoys hand watering. “I like to see what’s coming on and what’s going out.”

While there’s plenty to see in Mrs. Williams’ yard, be sure to take note of three plants that are extra special to her.

One is the dwarf Japanese maple in a featured spot.

Others are the terrestrial orchids, given to her by friend Fran McRa, that are in full bloom right now.

And the last is a super sentimental favorite – a rose rooted for her by well-known local rose lover Ida Hayden.

“It came from my parents’ rose. Daddy gave that to Mother in 1942 for Valentine’s Day.”

Now that’s a sentimental plant.

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.

 

 

Six gardens to be on Le Tour des Jardins

The garden of Jackie and Nancy Adcock will be on the 2014 Le Tour des Jardins. Photo by Kathie Rowell.

The garden of Jackie and Nancy Adcock will be on the 2014 Le Tour des Jardins. Photo by Kathie Rowell.

If you’re a Northwest Louisiana gardener, you probably keep the first weekend of May free – that’s when Le Tour des Jardins is usually held. 

This year, six private gardens in Shreveport and Bossier City are on the tour sponsored by the Northwest Louisiana Master Gardeners. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 3 and 1 to 5 p.m. May 4. 

Here’s a taste of what you’ll see:  

  • Jackie and Nancy Adcock, Shreveport.  The Adcock gardens are spread out on 57 acres surrounding their Southern-style home. There are fruit trees, figs, herbs and much more in a large garden overlooking rolling hills that contain over 100 live oaks.
  • Stan and Boots Swens, Bossier City. This fairy garden can be enjoyed from multiple seating areas that offer whimsical accessories and lots of color. The gardens contain river birch, Confederate rose, coral bean, angel trumpet, and much more, all surrounding a water feature,  greenhouse and vegetable garden.
  • Louise P. Williams, Shreveport.  A Southern Trace garden with pathways for strolling from a patio with an outdoor kitchen to benches, a fountain and bird bath, all covered with perennials, pass-along plants, and much more.
  • Joyce Hooper, Shreveport.  Sasanquas, Japanese maples, colorful annuals, and roses abound in this Twelve Oaks garden surrounded by a unique, antique fence.  The walkway to the backyard opens to a surprise waterfall and koi pond surrounded by an outdoor patio with a fireplace and kitchen.
  • Brad and Michelle Everson, Shreveport.  All views from this South Highlands home look out to their city garden. The front walkway leads to an entry porch lined with sago palms, holly and azaleas. A stone walkway lined with Turk’s cap, ginger, crape myrtles and bananas leads to a swimming pool and raised deck for entertaining.
  • Steve and Rene Schoonover, Shreveport.  This professional garden by Fleming Landscape and Irrigation and landscape architect Scott Crain is a pastoral setting on 22 acres in south Shreveport. Gardens surround this A. Hays Town-designed home. Louisiana iris thrives along the edge of the lake and the two connected swimming pools are lined with tropical plants, bamboo, roses and stone walkways with dwarf mondo grass.  

A Garden Bazaar will be held during the tour at the Pioneer Heritage Center at LSUS.  Admission to the Heritage Center is free. 

Advance tour tickets are $10 and can be purchased at any Citizens National Bank, or by calling the Master Gardeners office at 318-698-0010.  Tickets may also be purchased at any garden on the days of the tour for $12.  

Proceeds from the garden tour fund future Master Gardener projects and help promote the Master Gardeners’ mission to enhance the quality of knowledge for gardeners in the community. 

For more information contact the Master Gardener office at 318-698-0010 or www.lsuagcenter.com/nwlamg.

 

 

 

Le Tour des Jardins is this weekend

Hope you’ve got your walking shoes ready.

If the weather forecast holds up, it should be cool, breezy and dry this weekend  — perfect weather to stroll through five privates gardens featured on Le Tour des Jardins, the annual garden tour sponsored by the Northwest Louisiana Master Gardeners.

Styles vary from Mediterranean to New Orleans courtyard and spaces range from suburban acreage to city lot to lakeside oasis.

And for those who want to add a little shopping to their day, a plant sale will be held at the Pioneer Heritage Center on the campus of LSU-Shreveport.

Here’s what you need to know:

About the tour

  • What: Le Tour des Jardins.
  • When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 4, and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday, May 5.
  • Gardens:  490 Ockley, 9830 Jennifer Lane, 901 Jefferson Place, 5545 S. Lakeshore Drive, all in Shreveport, and 1309 Bay Ridge Drive, Benton.
  • Special feature: plant sale at the Pioneer Heritage Center on the campus of LSU-Shreveport.  Free admission.
  • Admission: $12 at any garden and the Pioneer Heritage Center.
  • Info: 318-698-0010.

Want a glimpse of the gardens before you go? Check out the links below:

The garden of Janie Lipscomb: http://louisianablooms.com/blog/04/29/2013/transformed-garden-lands-spot-on-tour

The garden of Jerry and Patti Harper: http://louisianablooms.com/blog/04/29/2013/transformed-garden-lands-spot-on-tour

The garden of Jennifer Donner and Chris Ciochetti: http://louisianablooms.com/blog/05/01/2013/edibles-ornamentals-mingle-in-tour-garden

The garden of Jim and Betty Deville: http://louisianablooms.com/blog/05/02/2013/lakeside-tour-garden-a-family-tradition

The garden of Dr. Jose and Ana Alba: http://louisianablooms.com/blog/05/03/2013/4898 

Mediterranean garden a whisper of home

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A Mediterranean-style garden surrounds the home of Dr. Jose and Ana Alba. Photos by Kathie Rowell

Part 5: Le Tour des Jardins to be held May 4-5

A sliver of Spain.

On the shores of Cross Lake, Dr. Jose and Ana Alba have done their best to create a garden reminiscent of the ones they grew up with in their homeland.

This weekend, it’s one of five private gardens open to the public through Le Tour des Jardins, the annual tour sponsored by the Northwest Louisiana Master Gardeners.

While her husband has lived in the house for 35 years, Ana has been there only 12. About five years ago, she decided to transform the yard into a Mediterranean-style garden.

“I thought I would like to get something that reminds me of the gardens of my childhood,” she said. “Spaces here are big. Our spaces are very small.”

The result is a series of smaller “rooms” with a feeling of enclosure. Shrubs and vine-covered fences serve as living walls. Planting beds are edged with short, clipped hedges.

A front terrace features a fountain, benches and urns, with crape myrtles to cast soft shadows on the stone, geraniums for color and jasmine for fragrance.

When possible, Ana chose plants that also grow in Spain. A fig tree – “Figs are very Mediterranean” – grows near the fountain. The garden also includes two pomegranates, for which the city of her hometown, Granada, was named.

When she couldn’t find the same plant, she chose those with a similar look or quality, such as fragrance. That’s why there is jasmine everywhere in her garden. “Our inspiration is the smell and the water of the fountains,” she said. “It’s interesting how a smell can transport you somewhere.”

A large deck on the back of the split-level house offers gorgeous vistas of Cross Lake and a patio set for dining.  Ana likes it best in early in the day, before the heat sets in, and at sunset. “During the morning, it’s gorgeous. It’s very fresh, the air. I love the mornings here. And the sunset here is the most beautiful I ever saw.”

About the tour

  • What: Le Tour des Jardins.
  • When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 4, and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday, May 5.
  • Gardens:  490 Ockley, 9830 Jennifer Lane, 901 Jefferson Place, 5545 S. Lakeshore Drive, all in Shreveport, and 1309 Bay Ridge Drive, Benton.
  • Special feature: plant sale at the Pioneer Heritage Center on the campus of LSU-Shreveport.  Free admission.
  • Admission: $10 in advance, available at any Citizens National Bank, or by calling the NWLA Master Gardeners at 318-698-0010; or $12 the day of the tour at any garden and the Pioneer Heritage Center.
  • Info: 318-698-0010.

Previously:

The garden of Janie Lipscomb: http://louisianablooms.com/blog/04/29/2013/transformed-garden-lands-spot-on-tour

The garden of Jerry and Patti Harper: http://louisianablooms.com/blog/04/29/2013/transformed-garden-lands-spot-on-tour

The garden of Jennifer Donner and Chris Ciochetti: http://louisianablooms.com/blog/05/01/2013/edibles-ornamentals-mingle-in-tour-garden

The garden of Jim and Betty Deville: http://louisianablooms.com/blog/05/02/2013/lakeside-tour-garden-a-family-tradition

 

Lakeside garden carries on family tradition

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Color fills a garden bed at the base of river birches at the home of Jim and Betty Deville. Photos by Kathie Rowell

Part 4: Le Tour des Jardins to be held May 4-5

Why is Betty Deville a gardener?

It’s a family tradition.

“I would attribute all my gardening to my dad,” Betty said.

Her late father grew both flowers and vegetables. “He grew some of the first peonies I ever saw,” she said.

And, at 89, her mother is still gardening.

“I learned gardening from childhood.”

This weekend, visitors will be able to tour the garden she and husband Jim have developed over the last 10 years at their home on Cypress Lake.  Theirs is one of five gardens on the Northwest Louisiana Master Gardeners’ Le Tour des Jardins, to be held May 4-5.

The Deville’s front yard offers not clues to what you’ll find out back. That’s where Betty’s outgoing personality takes center stage.

“If there’s a corner, I’m going to throw something in it,” said Betty, who laughingly describes herself as a “very stuff-oriented person.”

“I worry my garden might overwhelm people.”

She shouldn’t. The garden ornaments and accents – a child’s tricycle, a stone rabbit, an angel statue — nestled around the terraced yard complement, but don’t overpower, the plantings.

The first thing you’ll notice when you round the corner into the back yard? Roses – a love Betty inherited from her father. A dedicated rose bed holds a variety of bushes, but Knock Outs are scattered all around the yard.

“I’ve had Knock Out roses for almost nine years,” she said. “I really think they’re beautiful, but I see them everywhere now.”

The pool area is bordered by loquats, sago palms, Louisiana irises and loropetalum.

A garden at the base of river birches holds cleome, petunias, lobelia and tree roses.

A tiny terrace is the site of child-sized garden furniture and a fairy garden for the Devilles’ grandchildren.

Betty’s orchard area marches down the right side of the yard and holds citrus, fig, bay laurel, a persimmon her dad gave her as a present and an apple tree.

“Last year, I had one apple. I watched it all summer long and a squirrel ate it.”

One feature every gardener who strolls through the yard will covet is Betty’s potting shed. The one-room dollhouse with a tiny front porch, tin roof and brick floors contains a sink, counter/storage space and a sitting area. A lovely window box filled with bright flowers completes the picture. (Husbands, beware. This is sure to go on your wife’s wish list.)

“I use it all the time,” Betty said.

Ask Betty to describe her garden style and she finds it easier to tell you what it’s not than what it is.

“It’s definitely not formal. It’s not cottagey. It’s just home.”

And isn’t that the best style of all?

About the tour

  • What: Le Tour des Jardins.
  • When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 4, and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday, May 5.
  • Gardens:  490 Ockley, 9830 Jennifer Lane, 901 Jefferson Place, 5545 S. Lakeshore Drive, all in Shreveport, and 1309 Bay Ridge Drive, Benton.
  • Special feature: plant sale at the Pioneer Heritage Center on the campus of LSU-Shreveport.  Free admission.
  • Admission: $10 in advance, available at any Citizens National Bank, or by calling the NWLA Master Gardeners at 318-698-0010; or $12 the day of the tour at any garden and the Pioneer Heritage Center.
  • Info: 318-698-0010.

Friday: The garden of Dr. and Mrs. Jose Alba

Previously:

The garden of Janie Lipscomb http://louisianablooms.com/blog/04/29/2013/transformed-garden-lands-spot-on-tour

The garden of Jerry and Patti Harper: http://louisianablooms.com/blog/04/29/2013/transformed-garden-lands-spot-on-tour

The garden of Jennifer Donner and Chris Ciochetti: http://louisianablooms.com/blog/05/01/2013/edibles-ornamentals-mingle-in-tour-garden

 

Edibles, ornamentals mingle in tour garden

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Veggies and herbs mingle with flowers in the front yard. Photos by Kathie Rowell

Part 3: Le Tour des Jardins to be held May 4-5

 

Imagine growing up in Colorado and planting your first garden in Louisiana.

That’s what Jennifer Donner and Chris Ciochetti did about 10 years ago when they moved to Shreveport so Chris could take a job as a philosophy professor at Centenary College.

Jennifer  wanted a garden like her mother had.

“Forget it,” she said.

Gradually, through trial and error and research, she learned what would grow in the South and when to plant it. Now, her mother envies her daughter because Jennifer can garden year round.

On their small, urban lot near Byrd High School, the couple grows herbs, vegetables and flowers organically for the vegetarian meals Chris loves to prepare.

“We focus on the herbs because we like to eat out of the garden, but I do have to have my flowers,” Jennifer said.

Some, such as pansies, nasturtiums and fennel,are both beautiful and tasty.

Still, there are plants that are strictly ornamental because Jennifer loves them.

“I fell in love with agapanthus in Hawaii,” she said. “I found out I can grow them here.”

And she always has to have columbines.

“It’s my home state flower.”

There’s no segregation in this garden.  Flowers rub shoulders with such herbs as basil, oregano, rosemary and thyme, and veggies like English peas, Brussels sprouts, tomatoes and peppers. And because the backyard is primarily shady, herbs and veggies are planted in the sunny front yard and along the street side of their corner lot.

Out back, you’ll find amaryllis bulbs that Jennifer plants in the yard after forcing them into bloom at Christmas, crinums, hardy gladiolas, gingers, bear’s breeches, hydrangeas and a giant white-flowering potato vine that forms a screen on one side of their back patio.

“We spend most of our time outside,” Jennifer said. “Even if it’s 100 degrees outside, we’ll be on the patio.”

About the tour

  • What: Le Tour des Jardins.
  • When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 4, and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday, May 5.
  • Gardens:  490 Ockley, 9830 Jennifer Lane, 901 Jefferson Place, 5545 S. Lakeshore Drive, all in Shreveport, and 1309 Bay Ridge Drive, Benton.
  • Special feature: plant sale at the Pioneer Heritage Center on the campus of LSU-Shreveport.  Free admission.
  • Admission: $10 in advance, available at any Citizens National Bank, or by calling the NWLA Master Gardeners at 318-698-0010; or $12 the day of the tour at any garden and the Pioneer Heritage Center.
  • Info: 318-698-0010.

Tomorrow: The garden of Jim and Betty Deville