Mifflin Community Library Garden Tour All Abuzz with Beauty and Education

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The 2018 Garden Tour sponsored by the Friends of Mifflin Community Library will take place on Saturday, June 23, rain or shine, from 10 am to 3 pm at six locations in and near the Mifflin area. Proceeds from this fundraiser benefit the Mifflin Community Library. Featured this year, along with the variety of gardens, will be educational talks on insects – helpful and destructive ones.

Pollinators will be the focus at the Berks Nature tour stop. Located in its new home at Angelica Park, Berks Nature is a county treasure. Walk the through the pollinator and rain gardens, along the trails of wetlands and visit their soon-to-be LEED Certified green education center. At “The Nature Place” view an indoor honeybee observation hive. Learn how bees and other pollinators are vital to the environment and how to attract them to your garden at talks by local experts in the Pond classroom at 10:30 am and 2:00 pm. A nearby garden in Kenhorst, another stop on the tour, is a Master Gardener Certified Pollinator Friendly Garden that showcases the creativity and variety that can be achieved in a small suburban setting.

The destruction of invasive pests is the other side of insect education at a third garden on the tour. This property has been hard hit by the Emerald Ash Borer, killing more than 50 ash trees that were removed this winter. Arborists from Wolf Run Landscapes will be on hand at 11:30 am and 1:00 pm to talk about this insect and the damage it has caused to Pennsylvania’s ash trees and forests as well as the continued ravage of the Spotted Lantern Fly on trees and crops. Though this site has abruptly transitioned from shaded woodland to a sun-drenched garden, there are lots of native plants, a new herb border and fairy garden to enjoy here.

The diversity of the gardens is a highlight of the MCL tour again this year including a restored 1800’s school house surrounded by massive sycamores, dawn redwoods, Queen Anne cherry trees, mature perennial gardens and historic stone carvings by Clinton Shilling. Other tour stops include an intimate townhouse garden with a distinctively unique rock-accented design of annuals, perennials, river birch and fountains that create an inviting oasis and a pre-1830 farmstead with an historic barn, an extensive koi pond, a large pond with a fountain and swans and lovely paths bordered by perennials and shaded by Himalayan pines.

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In addition to the self-guided tour of six gardens, plan to spend time to enjoy the live music and peruse a selection of hand-made garden ornaments, hand-woven baskets, needlecrafts, low-cost plants, jewelry, and used garden/nature books for sale. There are also door prizes to be won, a spot for lunch as well as an opportunity to try your hand at quoits, croquet or bocce.

Tickets for the tour are on sale now at Mifflin Community Library, Stein’s Flowers, Berks Nature and at eventbrite.com through June 22 and at both MCL and Berks Nature on tour day.

For additional information, contact friendsofmcl@yahoo.com via email, Diane Pawling at 484-336-8356 or Elaine Bonfitto at 610-781-9216.