On last year's tour, most of the owners were on hand to answer questions. Since gardeners love to talk about their gardens and most of the attendees seemed very knowledgeable, there was lots of comparing of notes. Unlike the vast gardens on some tours gardens that require a professional staff the Ypsilanti gardens brimmed with new ideas that home gardeners with enough time and energy could put into practice. The one exception was George and Laura Bird's garden, with 250 varieties of roses. According to Mayes, "it's as close to a nursery as you can get without being Great Lakes Roses."
The club uses its dues money to cover costs and gives all the tour proceeds to charities, including Growing Hope. Happily, this civic-mindedness last year extended to the tourgoers, who were offered cookies at two sites, baked by a garden club member who made twelve dozen for the day.
This year's tour is on Saturday, August 20.
[Review published August 2005]