More than two dozen Northeast residents were among the winners of this year’s Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s Citywide Garden Contest.
Announced last month at the PHS Fall Garden Festival at the Philadelphia Navy Yard, the winners took honors for growing flowers and vegetables in everything from containers to large gardens.
About 300 gardeners entered the contest, said Flossie Narducci, the horticultural society’s educational activities manager. A third of the Northeast’s winning gardeners took first place in their categories:
• Joseph Ammaturo took a first place for his large combination vegetable and flower garden on the 9700 block of Wynmill Road. He’s been moving up in the rankings. Last year, Ammaturo took second place; the year before, he finished third.
• Nilsa Laya, for her large flower garden on the 11600 block of Proctor Road.
• Also awarded a first in the flower garden category was Scott Williams of the 2200 block of Faunce St.
• F. McDougal of the 9200 block of Wooden Bridge Road got a first place for his midsize flower garden.
• First place in the same category went to Jason Crawford of the 7800 block of Lorna Drive, and Mark and Kristen Ladzinski of the 3500 block of Teton Road. Crawford won a first last year, too. In 2009, the Ladzinskis won second place for their midsize combination garden.
• Carlyn Mulderig of the 300 block of Fuller St. got a first in the small flower garden category. Last year, Mulderig got third place.
• Armando Di Toro was awarded first place for his midsize vegetable garden on the 1900 block of Goodnaw St.
Eight Northeast gardens were awarded second-place honors in their categories:
• Joan Smalarz of the 1000 block of Borbeck Ave. won for her large combination garden. She won third place last year.
• For the second year, Jacqueline Rucynski took a second for her deck container garden on the 12000 block of Elmore Road.
• Karen Esslinger’s large flower garden on the 2100 block of Rhawn St. took a second place.
• Don Fortune once again won for his midsize flower garden on the 9200 block of Wooden Bridge Road. He won a second in the large flower garden category last year, and took first the year before.
• Sheree Kopple of the 500 block of Larkspur St. won for her midsize flower garden. She took a third place in the small flower garden category last year.
• Santiago Cruz was honored for his small flower garden on the 2100 block of Friendship St.
• Rosa Miriello of the 4300 block of Disston St. won for her midsize vegetable garden. She took first place last year and third place the year before that.
• Sid Dorfman’s small vegetable garden on the 8500 block of Bridle Road also won.
Five locals took third-place in their categories:
• Tania Ciolko of the 9100 block of Ryerson Road for her midsize vegetable garden. She took third place last year, too.
• John Wisniewski for his small flower garden on the 3400 block of Holyoke Road.
• Michael Tauscher, 8200 block of Winthrop St., for his large flower garden.
• Jeremy Rafferty for his container garden on the 3200 block of Longshore Ave.
• Randee Stevens’s large combination garden on the 3100 block of Welsh Road.
Honorable mention went to:
Marianne T. Miller of the 2000 block of Vista St. for her large combination garden. In 2009, she got third place.
Una Coyle of the 4600 block of Hawthorne St. for her midsize flower garden. She took third in 2009.
Margaret and Sydney Kanefsky for their midsize flower garden on the 7200 block of Kindred St.
From early July to mid-August, 265 volunteer judges were organized into 60 panels and evaluated the entrants’ gardens. They used a point system to determine the best, Narducci said. Judges looked for a variety of healthy plants. They wanted to see neatly kept and well-maintained gardens. They also wanted to see space put to good use and they looked for imaginative ideas, Narducci added.
Judges also awarded points for good horticultural practices, such as compost use. Citywide Garden Contest winners receive Philadelphia Flower Show tickets, certificates, ribbons and hardy plants for their gardens, said PHS spokesman Alan Jaffe. ••