2023 Emporia Garden Tour set for June 10


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Sep 23, 2023

2023 Emporia Garden Tour set for June 10

It is finally here! The 2023 Emporia Garden Tour sponsored by K-State Research

It is finally here! The 2023 Emporia Garden Tour sponsored by K-State Research and Extension – Lyon County, Extension Master Gardeners.

This Saturday, June 10, from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., four gardens will be open for the public to visit and see all the beautiful colors. New this year, there will be a drawing for those who attend the tour. As you visit each location have your ticket signed by a Lyon County Extension Master Gardener.

Once your ticket has been signed at all four sites you will be entered into a drawing for a gift basket containing items that we give to our garden tour hosts for allowing us to showcase their beautiful properties.

Here are the four gardens being featured on this year's Emporia Garden Tour. Just like previous years, each garden is different and unique in their own special way.

Bob and Brenda Redeker, 890 Road L, Olpe

Bob and Brenda have lived at their residence for 45 years. The property started with a pasture, and they have been adding ever since.

The lawn consists of a variety of grasses, but mainly fescue. The focus in the northern part of the lawn is a flagpole (built by their son), with the American Flag flying and a name rock at the base of the flagpole. The front lawn is highlighted by three brick planters with perennials planted in them.

South of the house is what they refer to as the "Enchanted Forest." Located in the forest is the headstone of a favorite pet, a sitting rock next to the headstone, with hostas and other plants surrounding the headstone and sitting rock. There is also a wooden bench under "the leaning tree" where one can observe the wildlife on the pond.

The back yard has native rock planters and walk-ways with the focus being on a native rock hitching post, and a hand-hewn native rock water trough, which will serve as a bird bath. The back yard also has a vegetable garden which includes a wide variety of vegetables that Bob and Brenda preserve by pressure canning and freezing. The garden has annuals in the first two rows to add color to the garden.

Directly around the house is a variety of Perennials, enjoyed from spring to fall.

There is a variety of trees and shrubs planted in the yard, which has been an accumulation of years of labor.

Susan and David Mai, 1424 State

Susan and David Mai are only the second family to live at the residence since it was built in the 1920's. The former owner was an active member of the local garden club, and the Mais inherited many plants which they have managed to keep alive. Original iris, lilies, peonies, and roses were transplanted from areas that were overgrown with weeds and trees. A birdbath, bench, and pots made from concrete are a part of the history of gardens. Areas have been divided into several types of gardens.

The front garden is influenced by English gardens with a pebble path and an arched trellis with clematis and rose. A variety of bulbs, perennial and annual flowers show a colorful display in the spring though the fall. A medlar tree and a pink smoke bush grow in front of the English garden. Five medlars are planted throughout the yard and provide unusual fruit in the fall. Two sweet gum trees provide shade and are surrounded by perennials, tulips, lilies, alliums, and mums.

Proceeding down the driveway, a small triangular garden shaded by black walnut trees is planted with hosta, astilbe, hydrangea, holly, and a sumac bush. Some of David's glass sculptures are included throughout the areas to create a sculpture garden. A slope at the edge of the property is naturalized with tall grasses, daylilies, surprise lily, and tall phlox.

An upper deck holds many herbs, cactus, orchids, and houseplants that are moved outdoors for the summer. David makes pottery planters to hold many of the plants, and ceramic sculptures sit on a shelf surrounding the concrete deck. Baskets hanging from the railing are planted with annuals. Large pots below are planted with gladiolas elephant ears, and vertical growing zucchini.

At the end of the driveway a small Japanese garden holds perennials and iris, hosta, an Alberta spruce and a weeping spruce tree. The Japanese garden includes a pagoda atop stacked stones, which form the structure of the landscape; water, representing life-giving force; and plants which provide the color and changes throughout the seasons.

Two small greenhouses provide areas for overwintering plants and starting seeds for vegetables and flowers. The larger greenhouse addition was built last fall from salvaged century old windows combined with new construction materials. It is a warm place to sit and entertain during sunny winter days.

An arbor covered with wisteria leads to the beer garden patio and a metal fireplace. The vegetable garden of raised beds continues down the brick sidewalk leading to the back of the sloping property.

Against the fence, young medlars, gooseberry bushes, spirea, yucca, iris and daylilies fill an area at the back of the lawn with a black cherry tree.

Hetlinger Developmental Services, Inc., 707 S. Commercial

Hetlinger Developmental Services recently completed the "Planting Hope" campaign and built an ADA-friendly greenhouse which is home to our new horticultural therapy program serving adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

The 2,100 sq. ft. state-of-the-art greenhouse includes automated irrigation, shading, and climate control systems, as well as four outdoor raised planting beds and a 1,300 sq. ft. shaded gathering space.

Horticultural therapy is a time-proven treatment found in a wide variety of healthcare, rehabilitative, and day or residential settings. Through a trained professional, horticultural therapy combines gardening and social services to improve the lives of people with a variety of needs. Horticultural therapy can improve memory, cognitive abilities, task initiation, language skills, and socialization. In physical rehabilitation, it can help strengthen muscles and improve coordination, balance, or endurance. In vocational horticultural therapy settings, people learn to work independently, problem-solve, and follow directions.

Andrea Salsbury, who received her Bachelor of Science degree in Horticultural Therapy from Kansas State University, oversees this new and innovative program which will provide year-round access to healthy food, employment opportunities for growing that food, horticultural therapy, and education in safe and healthy food preparation for 70 adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities served by Hetlinger.

Tim and Trish Dorsey, 2035 Prairie Lane

The Dorsey's moved into their home and garden in December 2019. Prior to this move they lived in a condominium for five years. Condominium living had shown Trish that she needed to have projects and needed to grow things!

After moving in and having time to wander around the property, Trish began to plan. With 2020 beginning with COVID, working less, and staying home more gave Trish the opportunity to start "digging in" to the year. Initially the property had a large sloping yard, an old wooden deck with some grape vines, overgrown shrubs and HUGE clumps of daylilies and hostas in the flower beds.

Many of the overgrown shrubs and clumps of daylilies were removed or divided. Most of the daylilies were planted around the edge of the vegetable garden making it look quite cheerful — sometimes looking much better than the vegetables.

The beautiful 4-5-foot-tall Japanese maple in the front yard still seems to be doing well. There was also a small weeping spruce that was moved from its wind whipped corner. Several clematis were found growing randomly in piles of stone and cement rubble. Trish relocated the clematis throughout the landscape, and they are getting ready to bloom again this year.

The previous owner used railroad ties edging the flower beds on three sides of the house. By rearranging the railroad ties, Trish has been able to increase the size of some of these beds. Railroad ties were also used to make flower beds and to terrace around the patio.

One of the current projects is applying a lime wash to the half wall of red brick on the front of the house. This has been a slow project since some of the bricks and mortar needed repair. Additionally, the temperature determines what steps of the process can be done and when. Learning to prepare the brick and apply the lime wash has been a process and one that will only be about half done the day of the tour.

So, come on out this Saturday, June 10, from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. for the 2023 Emporia Garden Tour, sponsored by the K-State Research and Extension — Lyon County, Extension Master Gardeners. Garden Tour tickets are available in advance either at the Lyon County Extension Office or tickets may be purchased from any Lyon County Extension Master Gardener. Tickets are $5 per person and will also be available the day of the tour at any of the tour locations.

For more information please contact the Lyon County Extension Office at 620-341-3220 or stop by the office located at 2632 West Highway 50 in Emporia.

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