PHS Presents 2013 Major Awards Recipients

PHS Awards

In November PHS presented its major awards to individuals who have greatly shaped PHS. Please join us in sending heartfelt congratulations and appreciation to the people (and place) listed below.

Distinguished Achievement Award

Chanticleer has been called the most romantic, imaginative, and exciting public garden in America, and in 2013 it celebrates its 20th year as a public garden, and the centennial of its creation as a country retreat for Adolph Rosengarten, Sr., and his wife Christine.

The garden has evolved greatly since the death of the owner, Adolph Rosengarten, Jr., in 1990. As the home of the Rosengartens, Chanticleer was beautiful and green with impressive trees and lawns. Most of the floral and garden development seen today has occurred since 1990, designed by Chanticleer staff and consultants. Chanticleer, which has 35 of its 48 acres open to the public, is a study of textures and forms, is a garden of pleasure and learning, relaxing yet filled with ideas to take home. It has been featured in magazine and newspaper articles, on the radio – and recently, was named by the BBC as one of the 10 best public gardens to visit in North America.

Staff members minimize harmful environmental impact at Chanticleer by reusing, recycling, and composting. Solar panels produce 20% of the electricity, and cisterns capture 22,000 gallons of rain water for irrigation and recharge. Integrated pest management keeps pesticide usage low.

Chanticleer’s educational component is different from other public gardens. Instead of labeling every plant, which would distract from the visual effect, Chanticleer encourages visitors to speak with the gardeners onsite about the 5,000+ plants there. Chanticleer offers a number of educational workshops, walks, and classes, many in partnership with PHS.

In addition to partnering with PHS on educational programs, Chanticleer staff members have been great volunteers at the PHS Philadelphia Flower Show, including judging and passing in the PHS Hamilton Horticourt. Chanticleer has hosted events for PHS, including the Flower Show Summer Party and New Members Reception, and offers PHS members a discount on tickets.

Certificates of Merit

Steve Mostardi owns the full-service/three-generation garden center, Mostardi Nursery, based in Newtown Square. He traces his gardening roots to a grandfather who was an estate gardener on the Main Line, and Steve was trained at the Barnes Foundation Arboretum and Temple University. He has served on the board of directors of the Pennsylvania Landscape and Nursery Association and is a recipient of the PLNA Hall of Fame Award.

Steve chairs the PHS Gold Medal Award Program Committee, which evaluates and recognizes trees, shrubs and woody vines of outstanding merit. Steve encourages gardeners who visit Mostardi Nursery to use these exceptional plants in their own landscapes, and features Gold Medal plants at the nursery and in his regular e-newsletters.

Steve served two terms on PHS Council, and has volunteered at the PHS Philadelphia Flower Show as a judge, passer, and Early Morning Tour guide.

Jane and Robert Pollock co-chair the volunteer committee of the PHS Store, and have been long involved in helping to make this revenue-generating component a great success for PHS.

Jane started volunteering at the PHS Philadelphia Flower Show in 1997, serving on the Infonet Committee, which she co-chaired in 2002 and 2003, and chaired in 2005.  Looking for other challenges at the Flower Show, Jane started volunteering at the then-named Flower Show Shoppe, where her considerable energies and talents invigorated this area of the Show. Jane served on the PHS Council 2005-2011, and is a past member of the Flower Shows and Events and Nominating committees.

Robert is also a past Infonet Committee member, chairing the Concourse Ambassadors group from 2004-2009 and working in the Show Information Booth. He also helped track labor hours and expenses for the Shows department at recent Flower Shows.

Together, they make an impressive team in the PHS Store, giving crucial behind-the-scenes support in the months leading up to the Show, and working long hours setting up and tearing down during the two weeks at the Pennsylvania Convention Center. Robert and Jane also helped make the inaugural Holiday Pop Up Store in Chestnut Hill a great success last December.

Joe Revlock started volunteering for PHS in 1980. Based on his leadership role in the Summer-Winter Community Garden in the city’s Powelton Village, Joe was invited to become a charter member of the Philadelphia Green Committee. Thirty-three years later, he continues to make outstanding contributions in community greening stewardship with PHS.

The one-acre Summer-Winter garden, which has won many prizes in the PHS City Gardens Contest, serves a diverse group of gardeners from around the world. It features 47 actively gardened plots, two water features, an orchard including Paw Paw trees, persimmons, figs and elderberries, bee hives, two egg-laying hens in a chicken tractor, and two sitting areas.  Joe also engages students at Drexel University for Saturday clean-up days.

Joe also volunteers at the PHS Philadelphia Flower Show as a member of the “Grumpy Old Men,” and was recently elected to the restructured board of the Neighborhood Gardens Trust.

Again, congratulations to these and all of the other hundreds of volunteers who make all of what we do at PHS possible.

PHS Tree Tenders: Register Now for Fall Sessions

Remember in high school when there were dozens of extra-curricular clubs and you likely juggled several for the sheer joy of being involved? As adults, it feels as though there are fewer opportunities to connect with people around shared interests, but that’s not entirely true. PHS Tree Tenders is the best way I know to make friends (likely with people in your neighborhood), give back to your community, and learn something new.

And whattaya know, we have three sessions of Tree Tenders coming up this fall! Residents of Bucks County, Delaware County, and Philadelphia can register today. Through Tree Tenders training, you’ll learn tree biology, identification, planting, and proper care. The video below offers a preview of the good times that can be yours. After you watch, click this link to register!

Stick it to Sandy! Help Plant Trees this Weekend

This weekend, PHS Tree Tenders in all pockets of the city will plant trees. With all the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy, this is a crucial time to get new trees in the ground. If you’d like to lend a hand, consult the map below. You’ll find contact information for group leaders who can provide details. Thanks for supporting PHS & Plant One Million!

Click here to view the map.

Have Fun & Make Friends: Philadelphia Garden Clubs

Ever think about getting involved with a garden club? You absolutely should! The greater Philadelphia area is crowded with clubs, so there’s bound to be one (or two or three) that are a good fit for you. Some are based around a special interest, like the Delaware African Violet and Gesneriad Society, and others are primarily location-based, like the Master Gardeners of Mercer County.

Click here for a compilation of garden clubs with open meetings. This is a tiny sampling though, so sound off in the comments sections if there’s a club you’d like to see recognized.

Remember, garden clubs are a great opportunity to connect to the horticultural scene in your area, and will likely lead to involvement in community-service projects, plant swaps, and garden tours. You could even end up exhibiting at the Flower Show!

Home Runs for Trees is a Game-Changer

Plant One Million is teaming up with the Philadelphia Phillies and ARAMARK to bring you Home Runs for Trees, a match made in Philadelphia heaven!

For each home run hit by a Phillies player during the 2012 regular season, Plant One Million will plant a tree to support the one-million goal. The trees will be planted in parks, municipalities, and watershed areas throughout the 13-county region at the end of baseball season.

Home Runs for Trees is a natural fit for the Phillies, whose ongoing Red Goes Green campaign encompasses clean energy, recycling, and volunteerism. ARAMARK, a Philadelphia-based leader in professional services, also has a demonstrated commitment to environmental stewardship.

The Home Runs for Trees partners gathered at Citizens Bank Park on April 30 to officially launch the campaign. PHS president Drew Becher said, ““With every homer hit by the Phils, the landscape will get a little greener and our air and water a little cleaner.”

Other attendees included David Montgomery, president of the Phillies, and Marc Bruno, president of ARAMARK Sports & Entertainment. Even the fan-favorite Phillie Phanatic came to help plant and water the ceremonial kick-off tree of the campaign.

Keep up with the Home Runs for Trees campaign by following Plant One Million, the Phillies, and ARAMARK on Facebook and Twitter. Look for the hash-tag #HRs4trees.

Save the Date: Love Your Park Week

Get ready for Love Your Park Week, eight days dedicated to cleaning, greening, and celebrating Philadelphia parks from May 12 – 19, 2012.

Whether you’re interested in service projects, fun events, educational programs, family activities, or tours, there is something for everyone. And with 100-plus participating locations,  you won’t have to travel too far either. Find out what fun is in store at your favorite park! And click here for volunteer opportunities.

Also, don’t miss out on the “Show Us Your Love” essay contest. The deadline is Thursday, May 10.

There are great prizes for runners up—but the grand prize is really special! A Yo Philly! Party in your favorite park with water-ice, soft pretzels, and a DJ spinning the sounds of Philadelphia. Wow!

So…how do you love your park?

LOVE Your Park Week is a collaborative initiative between the Fairmount Park Conservancy, Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, and the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society.