Tag Archives: Garden Tour

Convention garden tour spotlight

Derby Junior Garden Club Impresses OAGC Members

contributed by Ken Jungeberg

Like other destinations on the 2016 OAGC Convention Garden Tour, Stop #2 had some beautiful, unique and interesting gardens to view.  But this stop boasted something none of the others could – it was all created and presented by junior gardeners, members of the Derby Junior Garden Club in Region 9.

OAGC visitors at the Derby Junior Garden Club gardens. Note that the signs on each garden box indicate the private/corporate sponsor for that box.
OAGC visitors at the Derby Junior Garden Club gardens. Note that the signs on each garden box indicate the private/corporate sponsor for that box.

These young gardeners, ages 4 to 18, under the adult supervision of Derby Garden Club (Region 9) members and other community volunteers plant and maintain their own vegetable and flower gardens at the local township hall in Derby, Ohio.

Advisor Mary Ann Core with a group of Junior Gardeners.
Advisor Mary Ann Core with a group of Junior Gardeners.

They meet once a week during the growing season to tend the gardens and get practical experience in preparing the vegetables and presenting the flowers.  Garden tour visitors not only got to inspect the gardens but were also treated to kale chips, spinach pizza and strawberry punch made from the garden bounty.

Bette Jungeberg from Liberty Garden Club receives a tour from two junior gardeners. In addition to the group garden boxes each gardener has their own colorful “tire garden”.
Bette Jungeberg from Liberty Garden Club (Reg. 4) receives a tour from two junior gardeners. In addition to the group garden boxes each gardener has their own colorful “tire garden”.

And even more impressive than the gardens were the junior gardeners themselves.  These kids were enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and in full ownership of the process.  It was not unusual to see the junior gardeners leading adults on tours through the gardens.

Entranceway to the garden is lined with repurposed boot and shoe planters made by the junior gardeners.
Entranceway to the garden is lined with repurposed boot and shoe planters made by the junior gardeners.

Hats off to the Derby Garden Club and the Derby Junior Garden Club for their great work!  Their example would make a good template for other OAGC members interested in starting a junior garden club in their region.  For additional information, contact Wilma Beerman at (614) 565-5698.

Derby Junior Garden Club with advisors pose for a group photo. Special thanks to Wilma Beerman (front row, center) for her enthusiastic promotion of this organization.
Derby Junior Garden Club with advisors pose for a group photo. Special thanks to Wilma Beerman (front row, center) for her enthusiastic promotion of this organization.

Schnormeier Gardens – Gambier, Ohio

bridge
Schnormeier Garden Bridge – Image courtesy Schnormeiergardens

Schnormeier Gardens, located in the  gentle rolling hills of Gambier, Ohio, began in 1996. Over the years they have grown to include fifty acres of manicured lawns, ten lakes, a variety of discrete garden areas and several waterfalls.

The Gardens are rarely open to the public, and their annual Open House represents the only opportunity this year to visit and enjoy this remarkable site.

NOTE: Ted and Ann Schnormeier of Gambier, Ohio will open their spectacular private gardens to the public from Thursday, June 2 through Sunday, June 5, 2016 from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM. Reservations are not required, however, advance notice of groups arriving by bus would be appreciated. The Gardens are not recommended for those with limited mobility.

Those attending the Open House should start at the Welcome Center, at 8701 Laymon Road. The Welcome Center features a DVD presentation, striking photographs of the Gardens, including aerial photograph, and full-color tour brochures with map. There is ample free parking adjacent to the Welcome Center. Restrooms are available at the Welcome Center and near the Hosta Garden. You are welcome to take photographs. Pets are not permitted.

Tours are self-guided. The property is hilly, and contains manicured lawns, woods, meadows, streams, lakes, footbridges and many beautiful vistas. There are no paved or designated pathways so visitors are encouraged to dress comfortably and to wear walking shores. Visitors are free to wander the entire 75 acres.

The focal point of the property is a spectacular Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired home. This private residence was completed in 1994. The interior of the home is not part of the public tour. Other structures on the property include a Japanese teahouse, garden house, Chinese pavilion and arched bridge. Ever-growing collections of unique sculptures are also located on the grounds.

Schnormeier teahouse
Schnormeier Gardens Teahouse – Image courtesy Schnormeiergardens

The gardens have a distinct Asian flavor and feature a variety of plantings rich in color and texture. Rare conifers are plentiful here. Large boulders and stonewalls add dimension and contrast to the landscape. Designed with a bold vision and attention to detail, the gardens offer delightful viewing in any season.