GARDENING GODDESS: March . . . in like a lion

Lion topiary entry at the 2013 Philadelphia Flower Show.Lion topiary entry at the 2013 Philadelphia Flower Show.


March is one of the cruelest months for us Mid-Atlantic gardeners. Tantalizing us with signs of spring in the newly active Robins and crocus blooms poling up from the bare ground; at the same time, torturing us with frigid winds, snow/sleet/ice and drastic temperature swings.

One way we can bide our time until being able to work the ground is a trip up I-95 to the Philadelphia Flower Show. Washington Gardener Magazine is hosting two such trips up their this week and I was lucky enough to be able to go up myself this past weekend for the press preview day.

The Philadelphia Flower Show is like Disneyland for gardeners. From wine tastings to floral arranging classes to over-the-top indoor garden displays, there is something for everyone there — even a man-cave for those wanting to enjoy a brew, BBQ, and some ESPN.

Pictured here is one of the entries into the topiary competition — a massive lion that fits right into this year’s Philadelphia Flower Show theme of Brilliant! Britain.

Closer to home, here are some local gardening events coming up — all FREE and open to the public

Lion topiary entry at the 2013 Philadelphia Flower Show.

Lion topiary entry at the 2013 Philadelphia Flower Show.

Monday, March 18, I HAVE ELEPHANTS IN MY GARDEN,  SO WHAT’S YOUR PROBLEM?, 8:00pm, Brookside Gardens, Visitors Center/Education Building, 1800 Glenallan Avenue, Wheaton, Maryland
Don’t start whining about moles, voles or even deer in your garden. I have elephants tracking up the grass. MY cats weigh over 300 pounds. And where do they sit?…Come learn about the challenges of Zoo horticulture and take away some practical techniques and tips that work for gardeners who don’t have elephants in their garden…or 500,000 guests a year, either.
   Our speaker, Marie Mims Butler, took a degree from NC State University involving floriculture and landscape design. Her teaching experience in vocational horticulture and in Japanese flower arranging, a little State Department diplomacy, and the expense of four private tuitions served to land Marie Mims Butler in the Virginia Zoo. Sixteen years later, she is the Landscape Coordinator for this 53-acre, beautifully landscaped zoo in Norfolk, VA. She shares her earth-friendly practices with over 400 wild animals and even more wild children and adults.
This talk is hosted by the Silver Spring Garden Club. Doors open at 7:30pm. This event is Free. It is open to the public.
Wednesday, March 20, Spring Vegetable Gardening Talk, 7:30 – 9:00pm, Historic Takoma, 7328 Carroll Ave, Takoma Park, MD
Hosted by the Takoma Horticultural Club. Erica Smith will speak on “Spring Vegetable Gardening.” She’ll talk about growing vegetables in often-unpredictable spring weather, some plants and varieties for spring and summer that may be new to experienced growers, and what gardeners can do to make it all happen. Erica is the lead vegetable gardener for the Montgomery County Master Gardener’s Derwood Demonstration Garden, and runs the University of Maryland Extension’s Grow It, Eat It blog.  FREE and open to the public. Doors open at 7, talk starts at 7:30 p.m. Please bring a snack to share. As usual, the Club will provide beverages. Wear a recycled name tag and save a tree.
More details at:
 Wednesday, April 3, Second Nature Book Club Meeting, 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM at the Shaw Library at 1630 7th Stm NW, WDC near the Shaw Metro stop.
Washington Gardener Magazine Book Club is Second Nature: A Gardener’s Education by Michael Pollan. The room allows food and drink and you may bring your dinner and/or snacks to share. The book club meetings are FREE and open to anyone who would like to attend.
 Please RSVP to “WG Book Club” at

About the Author:

Kathy Jentz is editor/publisher of Washington Gardener magazine. Washington Gardener magazine, is a new gardening publication published specifically for the local metro area — zones 6-7 — Washington DC and its suburbs.

The magazine is written entirely by local area gardeners. They have real-world knowledge and practical advice with the same problems you experience in your own gardens. They share their thoughts on what to plant in deep shade, how to cover bare spots, which annuals work best throughout the humid DC summers, and much more. If you are a DC area gardener, you’ll love Washington Gardener magazine!

The magazine is published six times per year with a cover price of $4.99. A year’s subscription is $20.00 — that’s a savings of almost 40% off the per issue price. To subscribe to the magazine: Send a check/money order for $20.00 payable to “Washington Gardener” magazine to: Washington Gardener, 826 Philadelphia Ave., Silver Spring, MD 20910 OR to pay via Paypal/credit card click on the “subscribe” link at

Washington Gardener magazine also makes a great gift for the gardeners and new home owners in your life.


About the Author

Kathy Jentz
Kathy Jentz is editor of Washington Gardener magazine and is a long-time DC area gardening enthusiast. Washington Gardener is all about gardening where you live. She can be reached at @WDCgardener on Twitter and welcomes your local DMV gardening questions.