This past weekend a friend and I spent the morning touring six gardens on the 2017 East Sacramento Edible Gardens Tour. It was a beautiful day with a light breeze – although it did start to warm up as noon approached.
This year was the 6th Annual East Sacramento Edible Gardens Tour presented by the Soroptimist International of Sacramento (SIS). The SIS is celebrating their 95th year of philanthropic service to improve the lives of women and children in the Sacramento area.
I purchased our $20 per person tickets in advance on-line. Tickets purchased on the day of the event cost $25. Children 12 and under are free.
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I had been interested in taking the East Sacramento Edible Gardens Tour since I first became aware of the event – but this year was the first time I was able to work it into my schedule.
The six gardens were between B Street and Folsom Boulevard, and 32nd and 43rd Streets. We started at the B Street garden where we picked up our tickets at Will Call.
The Walnut House Garden
The house at the B Street garden is called The Walnut House as it is framed by two huge black walnut trees. The front yard is the garden space, and it was packed full of a mix of edible plants and flowers. We especially liked it that the owners had labeled the various plants – which we found extremely helpful.
This charming garden set a high bar for the other gardens on the tour. My friend and I agreed afterwards that while the other five gardens each had their charms, none could surpass our first stop on the East Sacramento Edible Gardens Tour.
East SMF Restaurant Kitchen Garden
Another stop on the tour was the East SMF Restaurant Kitchen Garden on J Street. East SMF has a container garden that surrounds their small outdoor patio where seasonal herbs are grown and then used in the kitchen. Samples of East SMF’s lavender lemonade were distributed to those on the tour – which was both delicious and appreciated.
Local Roots Garden
The Local Roots Garden on 36th Street incorporates both Lady Bird Chickens, delivering 3-4 eggs a day, and several bee hives that produce about 100 pounds of honey per year into the garden. This very large garden extends past the backyard fence to include part of the alley.
Zen, English Cottage and Secret Gardens
Three of the gardens were located within a few blocks of each other on 43rd Street.
The Zen Garden has a mix of flowers, fruit trees, and grape vines as well as raised beds of vegetables. I was especially interested in the groundcover in the backyard. According to the tour brochure it is a Japanese groundcover called Kurapi – and it stays green all year.
The English Cottage Garden has a variety of trees (fig, apricot, lemon, and kumquat) as well as raised beds containing both flowers and vegetables. Potted herbs are located next to the kitchen door.
The entrance to The Secret Garden is an arched tunnel made out of rebar and covered with Jasmine. The Secret Garden features seasonal and perennial flowers, with edibles tucked in between. Heirloom tomatoes grow in pots, and a freeform planting bed in the fall and winter mixes seasonal greens and flowers.
Every garden we visited had members of the Sacramento Symphonic Winds playing music as we wandered around taking in the plants and other special touches in each garden. Also on hand were Master Gardeners to answer gardening questions. I noted that a number of folks on the tour took advantage of the presence of the Master Gardeners to do just that.
All in all I found the East Sacramento Edible Gardens Tour a very pleasant way to spend a weekend morning – and all for a good cause.
Did you participate in the East Sacramento Edible Garden Tour this year? Have you in the past? Any comments to add?
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