Gardener displays 75 varieties of flowers, plants

Neighbors

June 20, 1996|By Judy Reilly | Judy Reilly,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

"IT TAKES a good 10 years for a garden to get going," says Trudy Jo Snader of New Windsor. Snader should know. She has one of the most luxurious gardens around, and she's been working on it for 17 years.

I had wanted to talk to Snader about her gardens since I became an admirer of the dried flower creations she has sold at area shops and crafts fairs.

It was a hot, muggy day when she and I toured her garden and its more than 75 varieties of plants and flowers, but the shade from trees provided a cooling effect as we talked about the rewards and lessons learned from a lifetime of cultivating flowers.

Snader grew up on West Green Street in Westminster, surrounded by neighbors, great-aunts and a mother, all who possessed green thumbs and an eye for beauty, so Snader comes by her devotion to flowers naturally.

"There weren't many other children on Green Street in those days," she remembers, "so I spent my time wandering up and down the street, poking around in people's flower beds."

As she raised her family -- sons Phillip and Joey, now grown -- she recruited them and their dad, Richard, to work in the garden. Her home is a testimony to their recognition of her keen interest. Books on gardening and garden-themed keepsakes are everywhere.

Snader's garden is a feast for the eye and soul. As I followed her on the paths, she pointed out names and characteristics of the living things, including three ducks that waddled through the flowers. Snader's garden is designed not just around the aesthetic value of plants, but for their personal meaning as well.

Plants come from friends from across the country, and as birthday or anniversary presents. Some were chosen at nurseries or cultivated by her late father or transplanted from the first farm the Snaders owned. Two blue spruce trees have grown from seedlings her sons brought home from an Arbor Day celebration when they were students at Elmer Wolfe Elementary years ago.

"Gardening brings you into contact with so many people you wouldn't have known otherwise," she says. Folks around New Windsor know about Snader's passion for growing things, and they'll often call her to visit their gardens to pick something, or drop plant cuttings at her front door.

Among the plants she grows are 11 kinds of sunflowers, love-in-a-mist and astilbes for her dried arrangements, roses for potpourri, and old-time favorites that are hard to find, such as lady avion, sundrops, my lady's mantle, lily of the valley and forget-me-nots.

"You have to have time to research all the garden centers and catalogs," she says. "There's always room for another plant."

One of her personal gardening missions includes sharing flowers with children. Pussy willows, bearded tongue flowers, snapdragons and balloon flowers all harbor lessons about life.

She makes sure to give young visitors seeds or plant cuttings to take home. To get children going on a lifetime of gardening, Snader recommends Sharon Lovjoy's books, "Hollyhock Days" and "Sunflower Houses."

What is her advice to grown-ups who want to pursue gardening? "Start small -- you really can do a lot in a small area," she said.

Information: 848-8929.

Teddy bear picnic

Mark your calendars for the first Teddy Bear Picnic from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. June 29-30 at Frizellburg Antique Store. Collectors of bears and dolls and devotees of country crafts will enjoy the show featuring the work of more than 10 artists.

Artisans Nicki Alban, Meg Klingaman, Laura Parkinson and Susan Geary will be among those showing and selling their work. Teddy bear expert and author Dottie Ayers will be on hand to sign her new book, "Teddy Bears: A Complete Guide to History, Collecting and Care" on June 30 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

"Teddy bears have a universal appeal that crosses all ages," said Laura Turner, owner of the Frizzellburg store. "And Frizzellburg is one of the county's best-kept secrets."

Turner plans to offer home-baked goods, drinks and snow cones at the event. The Frizellburg Antique Store is at 1909 Old Taneytown Road.

Information: 848-0664 or 875-2850.

Judy Reilly's Northwest Carroll neighborhood column appears each Thursday in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.

Pub Date: 6/20/96

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