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Garden tour to raise funds for Salem Preservation

Burchfield Homestead Arbor (Courtesy Nick Cool)
Greenisen Farm (Courtesy Greenisen family)
Mullins playhouse with Todd & Tara Peters family (Courtesy Ginger Grilli)
Mullins playhouse (Courtesy Ginger Grilli)

Look, Love, Grow, Salem, Ohio’s Summer Garden Tour, will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 7. Ginger Grilli, who is chairing the event, invites the community to support Salem Preservation projects while visiting some of the city’s best gardens. She said, “We are excited to showcase a couple well-known locations and a few hidden gems. We appreciate the property owners who opened their gardens to the public to make this possible.”

Many people are familiar with the Bob and Linda Sebo residence on Quaker Lane and its wonderful Christmas display. Imagine walking a path through over 10 acres of manicured grounds in the summer to get a closer look at bronze sculptures that dot the landscape. Guests can even see a model railroad that travels in and out of the house. Dave and Kathy Gano continue to expand their gardens on Highland Avenue. In the last five years they added a carriage house, greenhouse and pool. Each sitting and planting area is unique. The Ganos will serve refreshments. The 106-acre working farm of Phil and Marge Greenisen on Depot Road has been worked by their family since 1895. Small gardens surround the century house and barns. Their collection of antique carriages will be on display and a program shown in the Sugar House. Four years ago, Gregg Courtad began restoring his South Lincoln residence built in 1820. He claims his “home may not be as grand as some of the others” but guests will appreciate plantings around the house. His pool and sitting area are included on the tour.

With Salem being recognized as a Bee City, it is fitting to feature some pollinator gardens. The oldest, at the Burchfield Homestead, has been in existence for over 120 years. Charles Burchfield loved painting the environment around him. This included his family’s garden and the trees he walked by. Waterworth Park’s designated bee sanctuary, just east of the duck pond, was designed in 2019. The 4,700 square feet include an herb spiral, seating and a walking path maintained by Salem Parks and Recreation and master gardeners from Columbiana County OSU Extension. Members of Salem Federation of Women’s Clubs partnered with master gardeners to install the newest pollinator at Ruth Smucker House. Plantings incorporated some of the heirlooms that were present in previous gardens with new bee-friendly plants and the city’s signature sunflowers. The gardens of the Salem Historical Society have been attracting all manners of wildlife for a very long time. The Heirloom Garden was originally Schell’s Biergarten but has been owned by the Society since the 1970s. The Shaffer gardens were planted in 2012. A tea service will be set in the gazebo. Both include architectural artifacts.

There are two additional stops. For over 120 years, the historic Mullins Playhouse has graced the back yards of prominent South Lincoln families with children. It was passed between them until it came to rest at its current location with Todd and Tara Peters. They have been restoring it for their three young children to enjoy. In December of 2018 when Eva Davis purchased the Ambler Mansion on South Lincoln, she knew it would be a labor of love. It had been turned into apartments then basically gutted to replace the mechanicals. Look at the plans to bring back this fabulous brownstone to its original condition and for interpretive reconstruction of a period-specific carriage house.

Grilli reminded people to wear comfortable shoes as there are some uneven walking surfaces. She also said, “Dress for the weather since the event will be held rain or shine.” The $15 advance tickets are available at Salem Giant Eagle, Salem Area Chamber, or online at SalemPreservationSociety.org. Tour day tickets are $20 and may be purchased at either starting point — 271 S. Broadway Ave. or 443 S. Lincoln Ave. Trade in a ticket for a passport that admits to each location. A driving map, addresses, and parking details will be given. For more information call 330-853-7050.iia

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