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May Mart fundraiser seeds being sown

| Saturday, May 4, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Sean Stipp | Tribune-Review
Jan Brubacher of the West Overton Garden Club waters freshly planted flowers on the grounds of West Overton Museums.
Sean Stipp | Tribune-Review
Jan Brubacher (left) and Kristan DiBiase of the West Overton Garden Club plants flowers and shrubs on the grounds of West Overton Museums.
Sean Stipp | Tribune-Review
John Faith of the West Overton Garden Club plants shrubs on the grounds of West Overton Museums.
Sean Stipp | Tribune-Review
John Faith of the West Overton Garden Club plants shrubs on the grounds of West Overton Museums.

West Overton Museums, Scottdale, will kick off its season Saturday with a May Mart.

The May Mart, hosted by the West Overton Garden Society, will feature vegetable plants, flowers, herbs, pastries, coffees, jams and jellies.

Jan Brubacher, a member of the Garden Society, says that the May Mart originally was a way to showcase heirloom tomatoes.

“We wanted people to taste the difference between a heirloom tomato and a hybrid variety,” Brubacher said.

Heirloom tomatoes are varieties of tomatoes that have existed 50 years or longer. This year, the event will included grafted tomatoes, which are grafts of hybrids and of heirloom tomatoes.

‘These plants cost more,” Brubacher said. “However, they are more prolific than regular plants.”

Master Gardener Kristan DiBiase is designing a garden for the new entranceway to the Overholt mansion. DiBiase uses as her inspiration the original stone wall that is located beside the mansion and the natural spring that runs nearby.

“It was a big, weedy mess,” DiBiase said. “I plan to put in a wetland garden, which will include ferns, moss, witchhazel and columbine. I'll put in a small rose garden, as well.”

DiBiase noted that the soil in this section of the property had a high concentration of clay, which she plans to amend with topsoil.

“You can't fight nature. You work with it,” she said.

Jessica Kadie-Barclay, managing director of West Overton Museums, outlined some plans for the upcoming season.

“We're looking for docents and tour guides to work on weekends. We're also looking for general volunteers to work during the week,” she said.

There are positions in the area of collections and of archive management and documentation.

Kadie-Barclay hopes to start some educational programs and host other events at West Overton.

“We want to make West Overton a place that's relevant with the community,” she said.

The May Mart runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Overholt Mansion will be open for tours from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

For more information about West Overton, call 724-887-7910 or email info@westovertonvillage.org.

Barbara Starn is a freelance writer.

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