Victory blooms in the River Wards

Spring might be long gone, but some loc­al garden­ers work to make it last.

Eight River Wards-based gar­dens took hon­ors in this year’s Phil­adelphia Hor­ti­cul­tur­al So­ci­ety City­wide Garden Con­test.

About 250 Phil­adelphia gar­dens were entered in­to the con­test, which began in the spring, ac­cord­ing to Flos­sie Nar­ducci, the hor­ti­cul­tur­al so­ci­ety’s edu­ca­tion­al activ­it­ies man­ager. City­wide, the most pop­u­lar cat­egory was flower garden­ing, she said.

Some win­ners have ve­get­able gar­dens or com­bin­a­tions. Some win­ning plots are com­munity ef­forts. Still oth­ers used their green thumbs in con­tain­ers.

Con­test win­ners will be an­nounced dur­ing a ce­re­mony at the PHS Fall Garden Fest­iv­al, on Sat­urday, Sept. 22, on the parade grounds of the Navy Yard at the foot of Broad Street in South Phil­adelphia. Win­ners get cer­ti­fic­ates from PHS, plants for their gar­dens and tick­ets to the 2013 Phil­adelphia In­ter­na­tion­al Flower Show.

Debbie Rud­man won a first place for her small urb­an farm on the 700 block of North Front St. She was the only first-place win­ner in Star’s cir­cu­la­tion area.

A com­munity com­bin­a­tion garden on the 2600 block of Frank­ford Ave. took second place as did a com­munity garden block on 1500 E. Berks St.

Third places were won by Christine Mam­bauer’s mid-size com­bin­a­tion garden on the 3300 block of Em­er­ald St.; Damean Snyder’s patio con­tain­er garden on the 600 block of Miller St.; Al­mee Thrash­er-Han­son’s patio con­tain­er garden on the 1200 block of East Susque­hanna Ave.; and Jam­ie F. Bobur­chock’s mid­size flower garden on the 2600 of East Somer­set St.

A mid­size com­munity park on the 2200 block of East Dauph­in St. won an hon­or­able men­tion.

Vo­lun­teer judges eval­u­ated the gar­dens. Judges looked for healthy plants and vari­ety. They didn’t want to see weeds. They wanted to eval­u­ate well-kept gar­dens in which spaces were put to good use.

Judges looked for ima­gin­a­tion in garden­ing and awar­ded points for good hor­ti­cul­tur­al prac­tices such as com­post or rain bar­rel use.

Re­port­er John Loftus can be reached at 215-354-3110 or

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