|Rooftop garden at Phipps Conservatory Center of Sustainable Landscapes|
Here are some photos of some of the gardens. The plants, flowers, and venues were incredible. I fell in love with the Phipps Conservatory. The outdoor gardens were spectacular!
|Perennial gardens outside the Conservatory|
|Great garden performers|
|Two formal water gardens could be seen from inside; I had to check them out!|
The indoor conservatory was just plain fun, with trains, dinosaurs and displays of Chihuly glass in unexpected places.
|Trains were featured in several of the indoor rooms|
|Annual and tropical plants with the choo-choo train|
|Interesting desert room reminded be of Baltimore's conservatory|
The private gardens were over the top. Beautiful tree hedges, mulched "lawns", old garden gates and, again, dinosaurs provided whimsy and unexpected storytelling in many gardens. The hosts opened up their grounds to hundreds of us.
|Texture and color; flowers are secondary|
|Too much sun? This garden seat offers comfortable shade.|
|Peek through the garden wall for a look at the pool|
|This extensive pruned tree hedge bordered the upper lawn beautifully|
|Layers of shrubs on an emerald lawn-Wow!|
|Ivy covered walls|
|Dinosaurs need strong legs to cover the many hills in and around Pittsburgh|
|All of our garden hosts were super friendly and knowledgeable|
|Footbridge across Fern Gully|
|Lions were a common sight at many of the entrances|
One of the gentlemen even started up his 1957 tractor, connected it to a cart and picked up some of the more physically challenged of our group, so that they didn't have to make the long trek up his driveway.
|Our host talks to plants-man LLoyd Traven about his garden|
|Bit out of my price range, but beautiful just the same|
|Even the parking area gets the garden treatment|
One day, I played hooky with 3 other garden writers- Susan Reimer, from our own Baltimore Sun, Ginny Smith, from the Philadelphia Inquirer and Susan Harris, a garden writer, blogger and green activist here in Maryland. We struck out on our own and found Randyland.
|Randy Gilson of Randyland|
|Quirky garden! That's an understatement!|
|Randy re-purposes junk and creates jaw-dropping gardens|
|Look up, down and all around; you don't want to miss anything|
|Buy lunch down the street and bring it back to enjoy in Randyland|
|This Pittsburgh neighborhood is forever changed|
|Container gardens bring flowers to the street front|
Susan Harris wrote about this unique garden in her blog, Garden Rant. Talk about passion! Randy's view of the world and the joy and enthusiasm he brings to it is extraordinary. The four of us wandered in amazement while listening to Randy talking about the "junk", (his term, not mine) and plants in his garden. He is a waiter in downtown Pittsburgh and used his tip money and donations to create a one-of-a-kind city-scape. While we were there, people stopped to say hi and donate to Randy's mission. He has gardens all over the city, but this is the one he calls home. For more photos, google Randyland.
Thank you to all of the people connected with GWA. Pittsburgh has become a new place to travel to and spend time in after my attendance to the 2014 symposium.
|Pittsburgh was a wonderful host town|