Gardeners flock to region's May Marts
After a winter that overstayed its welcome, horticulture enthusiasts are anxious to head to their gardens and start planting. An annual rite of spring that kicks off the summer growing season for many gardeners is a visit to May markets and plant sales to check out the newest varieties of plants, the latest gardening accessories and the ever-popular festival food.
Greensburg May Mart
Greensburg Garden Center's annual May Mart, “A Gardener's Fare,” May 4-5 will feature a large assortment of native plants, herbs, perennials and a limited supply of its popular hypertufa cement planters, in addition to more than 20 local vendors.
Carla Rusnica, president, says this year's May Mart will feature hand-crafted Mason bee houses and special plants, including Asclepias (milkweed), Baptisia “Carolina Moonlight,” three varieties of native ferns and Allium “Millennium,” 2018 perennial of the year.
“Greenhouse 22 is bringing special dish gardens and moss basket purses for Mother's Day,” she says. “With their annuals is a new petunia variety named “Blue Splash” and “Pink Splash.”
Greenridge Garden Club will be selling heirloom tomatoes, Eastwood Garden Club will sell nachos, The Pickled Chef will have pickles and preserved/canned items, McKenna Seniors will have baked goods and Greensburg-Hempfield Library will have books for sale. Eden Apiaries and Pleasant Lane Farm will sell honey. New vendors include Succulents ‘n More, Creekside Landscape Supply featuring organic mulch and soil, Lois' Hand Crafted Items, Lions Club Brooms, Stony Creek Soaps and Jerrid Klosky's pierogies.
May Mart is set for noon to 7 p.m. May 4 and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 5 at Greensburg Garden Center, 951 Old Salem Road, Greensburg. Admission and parking are free.
Details: 724-837-0245 or greensburggardencenter.net
Phipps Conservatory & Botanical Gardens
Phipps Conservatory's 82nd May Market May 11-12 will feature organic herbs and vegetable seedlings, tropical plants and succulents, native and rain garden plants, and other seasonal favorites. Also available for sale will be organic soil and landscaping materials, botanical art and natural body care products. Phipps staff and Master Gardeners will be on hand to share advice, and hand-dipped fondant strawberries, an annual offering from Rockledge Garden Club, will be served.
Margie Radebaugh, director of horticulture and education, says visitors to the Phipps Tropical Booth will find rare begonias, fancy geraniums, mounted staghorn ferns, colorful foliage plants, edible and ornamental bananas, container plants to attract butterflies and hummingbirds, and easy-to-grow air cleaning house plants.
“For shoppers looking for a Mother's Day gift, we have Tillandsia kits that mount on grape wood, small terrarium plants to create your own dish gardens, finished succulent dish gardens and beautiful blooming orchids all ready to give in clay pots,” she says.
Susan Smith, May Market planner, says new Pittsburgh-based vendors include The Fudge Guy with handmade artisan fudge, Wild Helix offering patina metal jewelry and wall art, and Threadbare Cider, a new division of Wigle Whiskey.
May Market will be held 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 11 and 9:30 to 5 p.m. May 12. On May 11, National Public Gardens Day, Conservatory admission is half-off during May Market hours.
Details: 412-622-6914 or phipps.conservatory.org
West Overton Plant Sale and Makers' Market
West Overton Garden Society, West Overton Village and Scottdale Historical Society are teaming up for the West Overton Plant Sale and Makers' Market May 12 at West Overton Village.
Available for sale will be veggies, annuals, hanging baskets, ferns, herbs, perennials, succulents, geraniums and houseplants. Visitors can bring a plant and take a plant at the swap table. Makers' Market will showcase the talents of more than 30 local artisans. There also will be a children's bike helmet check.
The Plant Sale and Makers' Market will be held rain or shine from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 12 at West Overton Village and Museums, 109 West Overton Road, East Huntingdon. Parking and admission to the May Mart Plant Sale and Makers' Market is free.
Details: 724-887-7910, ext. 1002, or westovertonvillage.org
Gardenfest and Artist Fair
Garden clubs, artists and more than 25 vendors will come together for Gardenfest and Artist Fair May 12 at Lauri Ann West Community Center in O'Hara.
The annual festival will feature plants and other items for gardens and homes for sale. Activities include a Barnyard Petting Zoo, Bounce House, Hannah's Honey with Beekeeper Craig Jahnke, Rabbit Wranglers, an activity table hosted by Cooper-Siegel Community Library, crafts and ceramics demonstrations. There will be performances by Fox Chapel High School Orchestra and Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre students. Participating garden clubs include Fox Chapel Garden Club, Guyasuta Garden Club, Penn State Master Gardeners of Allegheny County, Western PA Unit of The Herb Society of America, Mens Garden Club of Pittsburgh, and Bartlett Tree Experts.
There will be food booths and food trucks on site.
Gardenfest and Artist Fair will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 12 at Lauri Ann West Community Center, 1220 Powers Run Road, O'Hara.
Details: 412-828-8566 or lauriannwestcc.org
Annual Herb Fair and Plant Sale
Thyme for Herbs Garden Club will hold its Annual Herb Fair and Plant Sale on May 5 at Harrold Middle School, Hempfield.
A variety of culinary, medicinal and ornamental herbs will be available. Scented geraniums and assorted perennials from members' gardens will include a wide variety of daylilies. There also will also be demonstrations and herbal items to sample, hot dogs, bake sale and trash-to-treasure table.
Thyme for Herbs Annual Herb Fair and Plant Sale will be held from 8 a.m. to noon May 5 at Harrold Middle School, 1368 Middletown Road, Hempfield.
Penn State Master Gardeners Plant Sale
Penn State Master Gardeners of Westmoreland's annual Plant Sale May 12 will feature a variety of vegetables, herbs, sun and shade perennials, hanging baskets, annuals, shrubs and native plants at Donohoe Center, Hempfield.
Also for sale will be sand cast leaves, milkweed plants for those who want to provide for the monarch butterfly population and a flea market with gardening supplies. Penn State Master Gardeners will be on hand to answer gardening questions and offer advice on plants for sale.
The plant sale will be held rain or shine from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 12 at Donohoe Center, 214 Donohoe Road, Hempfield. Cash or checks only will be accepted, no credit or debit cards.
Garden Club of Oakmont Plant Sale
The Garden Club of Oakmont will have its annual Spring Plant Sale fundraiser on May 12 in the parking lot of Hoffstot's. Hanging baskets, tomato plants, lettuce and herb bowls and decorative planters created by members will be available, as well as floral arrangements and flats of annuals for Mother's Day gifts and home use.
Proceeds will benefit local beautification projects, the club's scholarship program, garden therapy program for seniors and other community activities.
The Garden Club of Oakmont's annual spring plant sale will take place rain or shine from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 12, in Hoffstot's parking lot, 533 Allegheny Ave., Oakmont.
Indiana Garden Club May Mart
Indiana Garden Club will have its 43rd annual May Mart on May 18-19, featuring 100 vendors offering a wide selection of annuals, perennials, herbs and shrubs as well as crafts, handmade items and food. One of the highlights of the event is the club's “Orphans Court,” in which members bring plants from their gardens to be “adopted” by those attending the May Mart. Proceeds benefit community beautification projects and scholarships. May Mart 2018 co-chairwomen are Candace Joseph and Jan Berls.
Indiana Garden Club's May Mart will be from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. May 18 and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 19 at S&T Bank Arena, White Township Recreation Complex, 495 East Pike, Indiana.
Details: 724-541-4318 or www.indianagardenclub.org.
Sewickley May Mart
Sewickley Civic Garden Council's 54th annual May Mart will be held May 12. Participating garden clubs include Village Garden Club offering herbs, ornamental grasses and mother's Day bouquets; The Little Garden Club with “No Brainer Containers,” indoor orchids, salad and herb bowls; Trowel & Error with a large selection of annuals; Grapevince Garden Club selling heirloom tomatoes, herbs and vegetable plants; and Edgeworth Garden Club selling hanging geranium baskets, herb trios and baked goods.
There also will be children's activities and garden-related items such as statuary and garden clubs. Sewickley May Mart will take place from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 12 along Broad Street. Admission is free.
Butler County Spring Garden Market and Home Show
Butler County Master Gardeners and Butler County Parks and Recreation Department will present the 16th annual Spring Garden Market and Home Show on May 19 at Alameda Park, Butler. There will be exhibitors, landscaping materials, a plant sale, specialty food items and free children's activities, including face paintings, live animals and crafts. Entertainment will feature a live band performing 10 to 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. Butler County Master Gardeners and Butler County Parks and Recreation Department's Spring Garden Market and Home Show will be 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 19 at Alameda Park, 184 Alameda Road, Butler.
Details: 724-284-5383 or https://www.visitbutlercounty.com/events/22386-m/spring-garden-market-home-show
Other plant sales
• Irwin Garden Club will hold its Plant Sale from 9 a.m. to noon May 19 at Norwin Public Library, lower parking lot. The event is held rain or shine. Details: 724-863-7363.
• A Native Plant Sale will be held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 12 at Ohiopyle State Park Main Falls Area, 124 Main St., Ohiopyle. Proceeds from the sale support invasive species action in the park. Details: 724-329-8591
• Dry Ridge Garden Club's annual Plant Sale is scheduled from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 5 at Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd, 501 Fairfield Drive West Point, Hempfield. Hardy member-grown perennials, vegetables, herbs and a bake sale will be featured. Club members will be on hand to answer gardening questions and help with plant selections. Proceeds from the sale benefit community charities each year, according to Debi Kollar, director. Details: 412-558-3457 or dryridgegardenclub.com
• Murrysville Garden Club's Annual Spring Plant Sale will be from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. May 10 and 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. May 11 at Murrysville Fire Station Pavilion, Sardis Road. Annuals, perennials, flower containers, hanging plant baskets and special plants from members' gardens will be available. The event will be held rain or shine. Details: murrysvillegardenclub.com
Candy Williams is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.