Glencarlyn Library Community Garden Spring Celebration & Plant Sale

Sunday, May 6 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Rain or Shine)


Spring Celebration and Plant Sale - Plants and Nature to Enrich your LIfe
Native and Locally Propagated Plants from Hill House Native Plants & Nursery, Country Gardens and the Library Garden

  • Mushroom Logs
  • Hand-crafted Jewelry
  • T-shirts
  • Local Honey
  • Compost Tea
  • Other Nature-Related Items

Master Gardeners will be available to help with plant selection and gardening questions. All proceeds support care and maintenance of the garden.
Some items are cash or check only. Come early in the day for the best selection.

Located at 300 South Kensington Street, Arlington, VA 22204

For more information:
Alyssa Ford Morel at 703-907-9318 or Elaine Mills at 703-244-7309
glencarlynlibrarygarden@gmail.com

Printable Flyer: Glencarlyn Spring Plant Sale 2018

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PERENNIAL: Trillium grandiflorum (Wood Lily, Great White Trillium)

Trillium grandiflorum, Wood Lily, Great White Trillium

Trillium grandiflorum, Wood Lily, Great White Trillium
Photo © 2014 Elaine Mills

Tried and True Native Plant Selections for the Mid-Atlantic

A simple, graceful perennial, the Great White Trillium is one of the most familiar and beloved of the spring woodland wildflowers.  Its showy, long-lasting white flower is one of the largest among the trilliums, measuring 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 inches. The Virginia Native Plant Society named Great White Trillium Wildflower of the Year in 1996.

Learn more . . .

Posted in MG in the Garden, Tried and True Native Plant Selections for the Mid-Atlantic | Tagged , , , ,

MG Plant Sale at Green Spring Gardens

Come join us for our biggest fundraiser of the year! All plants are propagated by Master Gardeners in their own gardens or in our Demonstration Gardens.

Unit 13 at Green Spring Gardens
Saturday, May 19, 2018 – 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Master Gardeners of Northern Virginia PLANT SALE Saturday, May 19, 2018 9 am to 3 pm Unit 13 at: Green Spring Gardens Located close to the intersection of Braddock Rd. and Little River Turnpike, Alexandria, VA 22312 A variety of plants to include: Native plants Plants for pollinators Shade and sunny solutions Cash, checks and credit cards accepted

A variety of plants to include:

  • Native plants
  • Plants for pollinators
  • Shade and sunny solutions

Cash, checks and credit cards accepted

Located close to the intersection of
Braddock Rd. and Little River Turnpike, Alexandria, VA 22312

Printable Flyer: 2018 Green Spring Plant Sale Flyer Continue reading

Posted in MG in the Garden

Spring Ephemerals in the Shade, Part 1

Written by Mary Free, Certified Master Gardener
Originally posted March 2012

Snowdrops.

Galanthus nivalis (common snowdrops) 
Photo © 2012 Mary Free

If you have planted daffodils or crocuses, then you have grown ephemerals. Bulbs and corms produce a succession of colorful blooms from January to May. Once they complete their display, they retreat and rest underground until the next spring. [Do not remove their leaves until they yellow so that the bulbs and corms can store food for next year’s flowers. Deadhead daffodils and tulips so that they do not waste energy producing seeds.] Continue reading

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Simpson Gardens Spring Open House 

Sunday, April 29 from 1-3 p.m.

We invite you to attend the Spring Open House at Simpson Gardens on Sunday, April 29 from 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Come see Simpson Gardens’ spring blooms, learn about our garden renovation projects and about attracting bees, butterflies, and birds to your own home gardens. Additional date to remember: Fall Open House and Simpson Gardens’ 25th Anniversary Celebration Sunday, September 30 1-3 p.m. Details to follow. (Simpson Gardens is located at 420 E. Monroe Street, by the YMCA) Virginia Cooperative Extension programs and employment are open to all, regardless of age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg; M. Ray McKinnie, Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg.

See the gardens’ spring blooms, learn about our garden renovation projects and about attracting bees, butterflies, and birds to your home garden.

Simpson Park Gardens are located at 420 East Monroe Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22301, within Simpson Park, between the YMCA and Eugene Simpson baseball stadium. Parking is available in the YMCA lot.

Posted in Event, MG in the Garden, Simpson Gardens | Tagged ,

Upcoming MGNV Spring Special Events

Spring is a busy time for Master Gardeners of Northern Virginia. In addition to many gardening activities, there are a number of special events. We hope you will join us!

Simpson Gardens Spring Open House 
Sunday, April 29 1-3 p.m.

The waterwise garden is a mélange of colors and textures in late spring.

See the gardens’ spring blooms, learn about our garden renovation projects and about attracting bees, butterflies, and birds to your home garden.

Simpson Park Gardens are located at 420 East Monroe Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22301, within Simpson Park, between the YMCA and Eugene Simpson baseball stadium. Parking is available in the YMCA lot. Continue reading

Posted in MG in the Garden

Nurture Your Soil to Grow Your Best Garden

By Wendy Mills, Certified Master Gardener

2010 Photo courtesy of Lush Life Landscape Design Associates

2010 Photo of author’s garden courtesy of Lush Life Landscape Design Associates

Volunteers at the Glencarlyn Library Garden often comment on the quality of our soil, expressing pleasure with its good feel and workability. Here at the garden we understand that nutrient-rich soils are the foundation of any successful garden and that this doesn’t happen by accident. Soils in Northern Virginia tend to be clay-heavy and low in organic matter, so creating good soil —with a healthy mix of minerals, organic material, water and air—requires ongoing effort.

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Between the Rows – April Edition

Welcome veggie gardeners! 

It’s time to check out the April VCE Garden Guide for vegetable and herb gardening!

VCE supports local gardeners with a host of resources, including free classes, plant clinics and this newsletter. Want to know more? Subscribe here to receive future editions.

All the garden guides are available at VCE Garden Guide under Resources on the MGNV site.

VCE Garden Guide - Between the Rows

 

Posted in MG in the Garden, Organic Vegetable, VCE | Tagged ,

April 2018 Public Education Events

MGNV LogoThe following events are scheduled by VCE Master Gardeners in Arlington and Alexandria in April 2018.

Printable: April 2018 Publicity Flyer


Plant Selection: DIY Sustainable Yard Series

Natives summer phlox and red bee balm (behind) in July 2010. Photo Credit: Mary Free

Wednesday, April 4, 7 – 8:30 p.m.
Beatley Central Library
5005 Duke St., Alexandria VA 22304
OR
Tuesday, April 10, 7 – 8:30 p.m.
Westover Branch Library
1644 N. McKinley Road, Arlington VA 22205

There’s a perfect palette selection of plants right for you that will thrive best in the conditions of your site.  Learn how to select appropriate plants for your site, what is meant by a native plant versus a cultivar, and some best practices for planting and maintenance.

Free. Advance registration requested at mgnv.org.
Questions, telephone 703-228-6414 or email mgarlalex@gmail.com 
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Spring Herb Supplement

A Guide to Growing and Using Herbs

Welcome HERB gardeners!

It’s time to check out the Spring Herb Supplement to the monthly post, Between the Rows – A Guide to Vegetable Gardening for vegetable and herb gardening!

Here you will find additional information on growing and using garden herbs. VCE supports local gardeners with a host of resources, including free classes, plant clinics and this newsletter. Want to know more? Subscribe here to receive future editions.

All the Herb Supplements are available at VCE Garden Guide under Resources on the MGNV site.

Spring_herb_supplement

Posted in MG in the Garden, Organic Vegetable, VCE | Tagged , ,

Grasses vs. Sedges

Text and photos  by Elaine Mills, Certified Master Gardener

Sorghastrum nutans (Indian grass) - Fall foliage

Sorghastrum nutans (Indian grass) – Fall foliage
Photo © Elaine Mills

To prepare a public education presentation I gave last fall on native grasses and sedges, I educated myself about the general physical characteristics of these plants. Here are some of the interesting facts I took away from my research.

Grasses and sedges are both classified as monocots. These are plants whose seeds have one cotyledon (the part that will grow into embryonic leaves), and which possess flower parts in multiples of three, leaves with parallel veins, and scattered vascular bundles.  While they resemble each other superficially, grasses are members of the Poaceae family and sedges belong to the Cyperaceae family. Continue reading

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Native Sedges for the Home Garden

Text and photos by Elaine Mills, Certified Master Gardener

Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge) and other shade plants

Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge) and other shade plants
Photo © Elaine Mills

As local plant sales and nurseries carry more straight species and cultivars of some Mid-Atlantic native grasses, commercial and residential landscapers are beginning to recognize both the ornamental characteristics and value to wildlife of these native plants. Native sedges may not be as familiar to gardeners, but this spring, you might want to try growing one or more of the following easily-obtained sedges that work well in the home landscape. Sedges expand the palette of plants suitable for shady locations and are attractive as low-growing specimen plants, ground covers, and even lawn substitutes. Continue reading

Posted in MG in the Garden, Public Education | Tagged , , , , ,

Garden Myth Busters!

Improving Container Drainage with Gravel

Based on an intern project by Rachel Vecchio, Certified Master Gardener

Gravel in bottom of potTHE MYTH: Put gravel or rocks in the bottom of containers to improve drainage.

THE REALITY: This long-held gardening belief is based on the idea that gravel or rocks at the base of a container will allow water to move more freely from top to bottom, thus preventing the plants’ roots from becoming waterlogged. Ironically, the exact opposite occurs.  Continue reading

Posted in Demonstration Gardens, Intern Projects | Tagged , ,

Planting Dates for Arlington and Alexandria

Printable Document (2 sided): Arlington Alexandria Garden Planting Dates

Planting Dates Arlington-Alexandria

 

Posted in MG in the Garden, Public Education | Tagged , ,

Between the Rows – March Edition

Welcome veggie gardeners! 

It’s time to check out the March VCE Garden Guide for vegetable and herb gardening!

VCE supports local gardeners with a host of resources, including free classes, plant clinics and this newsletter. Want to know more? Subscribe here to receive future editions.

All the garden guides are available at VCE Garden Guide under Resources on the MGNV site.

VCE Garden Guide - Between the Rows

 

Posted in MG in the Garden, Organic Vegetable, VCE | Tagged ,

Meet the Glencarlyn Library Community Garden Coordinators

by Elaine Mills, Master Gardener

Photos © Elaine Mills

Glencarlyn Coordinators

Garden coordinators (L to R): Judy Funderburk, Alyssa Ford Morel, Elaine Mills, Paul Nuhn, Wendy Mills.

The Glencarlyn Library Community Garden, one of the demonstration gardens maintained by Master Gardener volunteers and interns from the Arlington/Alexandria unit of Virginia Cooperative Extension, is now under the leadership of five coordinators: Paul Nuhn, Alyssa Ford Morel, Wendy Mills, Elaine Mills (not a relation), and Judy Funderburk. Continue reading

Posted in Demonstration Gardens, Glencarlyn | Tagged ,

Edible Flowers in the Vegetable Garden

by Nancy Dowling, Certified Master Gardener

When I plan a vegetable plot, I always include flowers. You might think that this would take needed space from the vegetables, but I argue that the flowers will pay you back handsomely. For one thing, they attract pollinators, such as bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects during the growing period. Also, many flowers are edible, so one could argue that they earn their keep twice over. When you are already growing vegetables, doesn’t it make sense to add flowers you can eat? Over the years, I’ve come to depend on select flowers that work well with vegetables, and require just a little work to cultivate and prepare. Let me tell you about them.

Tropaeolum majus (Nasturtium)

Continue reading

Posted in Demonstration Gardens, MG in the Garden, Organic Vegetable Demonstration Garden | Tagged , , , ,

March 2018 Public Education Events

MGNV LogoThe following events are scheduled by VCE Master Gardeners in Arlington and Alexandria in March 2018.

Printable: March 2018 Publicity Flyer

Winter PruningWintertime Pruning . . . and Why It is the Best Time to Prune (some) Plants.

Saturday, March 3, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
OR
Sunday, March 4, 1:00-3:00 p.m.

Class meets outside, in front of
2416 Ridge Road Drive, Alexandria, VA  22302

Come for hands-on training on the how, when, and why to prune hedges, multi-stem shrubs, small trees, and large branches. You will also learn dormant season pruning of your non-woody perennials. The results will be healthier and bushier growth, and more attractive landscaping. Bring your own tools, and remember to dress for the weather! Entire class is held outdoors.

Free. Advance registration requested at mgnv.org.
Questions,telephone 703-228-6414 or email mgarlalex@gmail.com  Continue reading

Posted in Public Education Events | Tagged , , , , , , ,

Growing Food in Winter

Though it's snowing, our plants are growing!

Though it’s snowing, our plants are growing!
Photo © 2018 MGNV

If you would be interested in building your own cold frame, we still have spots in our Cold Frame Workshop coming up on February 17. Please register ASAP online!

Have you seen the winter sowing/season extension display in the outdoor garden area at Fairlington Community Center (FCC)? It was created by two 2017 Master Gardener interns, Jasmin and her mother, Georgia, as a part of their MG intern project. It illustrates how easy and effective growing plants outdoors in winter in Zone 7b can be, anywhere there is a small space and a bit of sun. Continue reading

Posted in Intern Projects, MG in the Garden | Tagged , , , ,

Winter and the Vegetable Gardener

By Nancy Dowling, Certified Master Gardener

Packets of Vegetable SeedsPeople seem to think that winter is a slow time for a vegetable gardener, but that’s a misconception. In fact, winter is the time a vegetable gardener works out plans for the coming year’s garden.

Planning includes imagination, research, organization, and . . . action!  For me, it starts with taking an inventory of seed packages on hand to see which ones are past their germination window, and which are still viable for the upcoming season. Usually seeds have a reliable germination period of about three years. Every year after the initial one lowers the germination rate by about 10 percent. So, if the initial germination rate is 90 to 100 percent, by the fourth year it may decrease to 50 to 60 percent, and that just might not be worth it when a new packet of seeds would increase your odds dramatically. Doubling and tripling the quantity of seeds needed in the fourth year may work for some seed types, but in my opinion, it leaves too much to chance.  Continue reading

Posted in Organic Vegetable Demonstration Garden | Tagged , , , ,

The Master Gardener Bookshelf:  The Foodscape Revolution

The Foodscape Revolution — Finding a Better Way to Make Space for Food and Beauty in Your Garden by Brie Arthur

Review by Susan Wilhelm, Certified Master Gardener

The Foodscape Revolution —Finding a Better Way to Make Space for Food and Beauty in Your Garden book jacket

Interested in growing vegetables but lack space or are concerned your local homeowner association will frown on edible landscaping? If so, The Foodscape Revolution — Finding a Better Way to Make Space for Food and Beauty in Your Garden by Brie Arthur may help. The Foodscape Revolution is a “how-to” for integrating annual vegetables and flowers in traditional ornamental landscapes. The result is fresh food, a beautiful landscape and, in Ms. Arthur’s case, an award from her local homeowner’s association. Continue reading

Posted in The Master Gardeners' Bookshelf | Tagged , ,

February 2018 Public Education Events

MGNV LogoThe following events are scheduled by VCE Master Gardeners in Arlington and Alexandria in February 2018.

microgreensMicrogreens: What Are They, Why They Are So Fabulous, and How to Grow Them

Monday, February 5, 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. (Rescheduled from Jan 8, 2018)
Barrett Branch Library
717 Queen St., Alexandria VA 22314

Microgreens – You’ve likely seen them, but what makes them so good for you?  Join us to learn their many benefits, and some simple ways to grow these delicious, nutritious and inexpensive baby plants & sprouts in your own home.  Plus, we provide supplies for you to plant your own container, so come prepared to get a bit dirty while you make your own microgreens garden in class!

Free. Advance registration requested at mgnv.org.
Questions,telephone 703-228-6414 or email mgarlalex@gmail.com  Continue reading

Posted in MG in the Garden, Public Education Events

Rosemary and Lavender: Hardy Herbs That Often Survive Our Winters – and Spice up or Calm Down the Gardener or Cook

By Judy Funderburk, Certified Master Gardener

Note: This is the second in an occasional series of short articles featuring herbs grown in the Master Gardener Demonstration Garden at the Glencarlyn Branch Library in Arlington County, Virginia.

Lavender in bloom

Lavender in bloom
Image by Huntley Photography

Here in the midst of winter we invite you to learn more about rosemary and lavender – their backgrounds, growth habits, and needs; their culinary, fragrance, and medicinal uses. Both herbs are ingredients for food or drink served as “tastes” at our annual AutumnFest celebration in mid-September. Rosemary Herbed Pecans and Lavender Poundcake taste-tested recipes are included below.

Continue reading

Posted in MG in the Garden, Recipes

May 2018 Public Education Events

MGNV LogoThe following events are scheduled by VCE Master Gardeners in Arlington and Alexandria in May 2018:


Tuesday, May 1, 7–8:30 p.m.
Westover Branch Library
1644 N. McKinley Road, Arlington VA 22205

DIY Sustainable Yard Series, Part 5: Problem Plants and Better Alternatives

English ivy (Hedera helix)

English ivy (Hedera helix)

Problem plants in the home garden can out-compete native and beneficial plants and don’t support our local wildlife.  They may even be invasive.  Learn about alternatives and ways to rid your yard of problem plants.

Free. Advance registration requested at mgnv.org.
Questions? Call 703-228-6414 or email mgarlalex@gmail.com.

Continue reading

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