Loveland, Colorado is known as an “art town,” and I am blessed to live here! We were first associated with the arts, as far as I know, because of the sculpture and foundry business. Indeed, Loveland is home to a large and well-known sculpture extravaganza which happens every year in late summer.
Since I arrived here, in 2001 (and before), our little town has been accumulating ever-growing numbers of all description of artists: fiber artists, potters, photographers, and, of course, painters. It’s really fun & inspiring for me to live among such a wonderful group of people!
As it happens, Colorado is also a great state for gardening, my favorite hobby. Loveland’s annual garden tour, a benefit for Loveland Youth Gardeners, is an event that first got my attention a couple of years ago, when my next-door neighbor was a participant. I’ve wanted to attend ever since; but this year, I actually did it!
Seven homes between the 900 and 1300 block of a nearby street hosted half of Loveland, it seemed, as hat-wearing chatting neighbors and friends toured their gardens. The fantastic thing about this tour was that art was featured in every garden! Most of the art included re-purposed materials. Actually, it was sometimes unclear where the art left off and the garden began.
Antique bicycles, scrap metal, and everything that could become a planter could be discovered among the wandering stone paths and raised beds, all artfully re-purposed. There were sculptures and paintings, ceramic bird houses and water features. And there were not a few pieces of art that included live plants.
Thanks to each of you who shared art, plants, and magical spaces. Here’s a list of the gardeners and artists who participated this year:
1) Sharon Shuster Anhorn, artist & gardener, Olivia Lowe, featured artist. I happen to know that Olivia is also a gardener because she is my neighbor. However, her whimsical art was in Sharon’s garden this weekend.
2) Norm & Carol Rehme, gardeners, Sue Quinlan & Charlotte Zink, featured artists. This is also a beautiful home that is an historic property.
3) Lynn Kincanon, gardener & artist, Fran Judd (also a gardener) & Juanita Estepa, featured artists. I’ve gotten to know Fran a bit over the past year. She is one of my all-time-favorite painters!
4) The Kelleher Garden, Kathi D. Dougherty & Deb Kessler, featured artists. These artists showed their striking glass pieces, which are so perfect for a sunny garden spot.
5) Jan Armstrong & John Wright, gardeners. John is also the featured artist for this garden, a joint effort of next door neighbors who share plants, chickens, and art. This delightful couple went beyond the official end time to engage us in conversation & show us some wonderful creations we otherwise would have missed.
A bit about Loveland Youth Gardens: They seek to “cultivate skills, stewardship & service in young people through sustainable gardening & healthy living practices.” I met a few of these fine teens, and they educated me about their garden plots and community service. Check them out at http://www.LovelandYouthGardeners.org. I’m inspired!