In the garden

A quilt with a view: The N.C. Arboretum's quilt garden uses flowers to create a tapestry of color. See it for free on National Public Gardens Day on Friday, May 10.

The garden's big day

Earth Day has come and gone and Mother's Day is just around the corner, but who could forget National Public Gardens Day? (It’s Friday, May 10, of course.) Plant-lovers get to celebrate the beauty of our nation's botanical gardens and arboreta with free admission to public gardens throughout the country.

Just south of Asheville, the North Carolina Arboretum will offer free admission to its 434-acres of flowers, trees and shrubs on May 10 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. See the perfectly manicured bonsai garden with its miniature Japanese trees. Enjoy the view from the quilt garden, which uses seasonal flowers to create a pattern that mimics a handmade quilt. Bring your bike for an afternoon on the arboretum's 10 miles of hiking and biking trails. It's easy to spend an afternoon or the entire day wandering the outdoor exhibits and spectacular array of plants. 100 Frederick Law Olmsted Way. Free coupon required. or for coupon.

Compost 101

Composting is one of the easiest and low-pressure ways to go green — no watering or weeding is involved and success is basically guaranteed. However, if you're new to composting, there are some tips and tricks that will ensure your scraps actually decompose.

Buncombe County Extension Master Gardeners have all the info you need to get a compost pile started. On the second and fourth Saturdays of the month, EMG volunteers will be available to give composting advice at the WNC Farmers Market, 570 Brevard Road, beside Jesse Israel & Sons Garden Center. Volunteers will give demonstrations, hand out printed materials and offer composting strategies. Free samples of "black gold" will be available.

If your yard is too small for a compost bin or physical challenges prevent you from getting out in the garden, Asheville has a new residential compost pickup service. Starting this month, CompostNow will pick up banana peels, apple cores and even meat and dairy products each week. Members can request fully composted soil in return, so you can get the benefits of composting without the hassle. $32 for weekly pickup of two bins.

Visit Japan without leaving WNC

Western North Carolina may be a long way from the Land of the Rising Sun, but our climates are similar enough that bamboo can thrive in both parts of the world. A grove of these perennial evergreens is a delight for the senses. The sound of bamboo leaves swaying in the wind combined with the plant's lush greenery is enough to bring the tranquility of rural Asia closer to home.

Experience the beauty of a verdant grove at Haiku Bamboo Nursery in Hendersonville. The nursery features 23 species of bamboo, ranging from dwarf to timber. The public is invited to tour the groves at bamboo walking tours, offered every second and fourth Sunday from 1:30-3 p.m. Experience the beauty of a true bamboo forest — no plane ticket required. $20.


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

About Webmaster
Mountain Xpress Webmaster Follow me @MXWebTeam

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.