City Community Gardens Day proclamation at Bel Arbor

Bel Arbor garden was chosen as the location for the presentation of first-ever Community Gardens Day Proclamation from the City of Philadelphia. Mark Focht, the First Deputy Commission, Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Dept. made brief remarks and read the Mayor's Proclamation, and Margaret McCarvill, Board President of the Neighborhood Gardens Trust introduced the speakers, which included Drew Becher, President of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society ,Carla Puppin, Neighborhood Gardens Trust Board Member and Bel Arbor Garden Representative, and 1st district City Councilman Mark Squila.


See a photo gallery of the event here »

The Bee page

Follow the progress of the Bel Arbor hive over on our Bee page »


Bel Arbor honored at the Flower Show

PHS honored Bel Arbor, among 12 "Keystone Gardens" atthe 2012 Philadelphia International Flower Show at the annual city gardens brunch. Awardees went home with a beautiful witch hazel plant and a certificate noting that a tree had been planted in Bel Arbor's honor as part of the Million Tree initiative.

Jon accepted the award for Bel Arbor.

Brochures have been placed in the bulletin board at our main entrance.



Anyone who brings compost from home to the front compost bin owes a big thank you to Stanley, our resident compost - emptying/turning expert.

There is a "leaf barrel" next to the compost bin at main entrance.
If you use the compost bin, please add some leaves from the bin each time you put your compost in. This will help the decomposition process.
(Thank you, Stanley, for recently emptying the bin.)


In cleaning out your gardens, remember 2 things:
1. No diseased, bug-infested plants go in the compost
2. DO NOT throw entire plants into the compost pile.
Cut up any plants into smaller pieces, 12" or less. Makes it much, much easier to turn this pile, i.e., makes it much, much easier for Stanley, who has taken on this task.



The water MUST be turned off at the blue pump after you are finished, whether it is early morning or in the evening. There are a couple of leaky connections at a few places, when the pump is on. So if you are the last one to use the water, a.m. or p.m., turn it off at the pump.

City Harvest this year

Here are someof the plants for City Harvest this spring...

PHS annual City Gardens Awards

Bel arbor wins first place!

See the video fro the awards presentation»



See the video about the history of our garden at Philaplace.org


Goldfinches are flitting about

I finally got one of the little yellow buggers on film (pixels)

Snakes Ahoy!

Our resident garter snake made an appearance last weekend while we were moving compost around. He (she) is about 24" long now, and has been blinded in the left eye - probably an encounter with a cat.

Water water everywhere...

The watering system is in operation now - email me if you see any significant leaks.

Houston, we have visual contact

I have been experimenting with my camera and night shooting and got off a shot of the International Space Station (ISS) passing overhead Sunday night. It is the streak above the condos in the photo.

NASA has a schedule online so you'll know when to look...

NASA Schedule »

Ith ISS appears as a bright object (no flashing lights - those are planes) that moves quickly from SW to NE. If you have good binoculars on a clear night, you'll be able to see the details on the Space Station.


Behold the Mantis!

The new composter is in place and working. Instructions on how to use it coming soon!

Photo of the grasses taken in February

Bel Arbor Tree Tenders planting


Bel Arbor Tree Tenders Tree Planting of TreeVitalize trees took place on Saturday, November 15th



Julie on TV

Our very own Julie Snell has been involved in the production of a series of TV spots with the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society and Channel 10 that have been playing all over the country. Here she is with Laurie Delgado and crew in the garden filming a spot about fall garden projects. The segments are called "Watch Your Garden Grow" and appear during NBC 10 newscasts during the 6:30 show on Friday mornings and at 9 a.m. on Sunday mornings.

See a video clip of the filming >>

coonYes Virginia, there was a raccoon in the neighborhood

Proof right here....

City Harvest plot

Read about the program in a City Paper article, and PHS's web page about the program.


Snapshots of Tom's memorial in the garden can be viewed here


We have won FIRST PLACE in the City Gardens Contest for 2006 in the Large Mixed Garden (Veg. and flower) category. The awards ceremony will be at the Kimmel Center on Sunday, Oct. 1st at 2 pm.


Solstice party photos

See some snapshots of "camping" in the garden

Carla took som pictures too - see them here


City Garden plot

The City Garden Plot has produced its first yield: 4 1/2 lbs of bok choy and 2 lbs of mustard greens. The Stiffel Center picked it up yesterday.


Inquirer article about Rosemary

Click here to read it



Penn State now has an organic horticultural researcher. She has put
together these URLs to help organic growers:

http: //hortweb.cas.psu.edu/dept/faculty/sanchez/sustainable_horticulture/

The site includes The Organic Grower's Guide to Penn State, Sanchez'
Organic Way columns in Penn State publication, Fact Sheets & Articles
and Vegetable and Small Fruit Publications

Weed Management in Organic Cropping Systems PDF by Professor of Weed
Science William Curran can be found here:

http: //pubs.cas.psu.edu/freepubs/pdfs/uc187.pdf