Archive by Author

Harvest Festival at Cedar Grove Gardens

26 Sep

Our annual Harvest Festival is just around the corner. This year it will be on Sunday October 29th from 1-3, a date you will want to save for sure! Our Harvest Festival brings so much joy to the little ones in our neighborhood.  While a group of witches, super hero’s and Disney princesses  wait for their chance to swing the bat at our candy filled pinata’s, others are anxiously awaiting their turn to ride the horse drawn carriage through the brilliant fall foliage and the fallen leaves over at the Cedar Grove Cemetery.  I’m honestly not sure who enjoys this more the adults or the children but everyone is welcome and this event is always FREE.

 

 

 

Abby & Kevin

20 Sep

In May we had the honor of designing flowers for Abby & Kevin, we love all the great shots that the fabulous Erica Ferrone took of the happy couple on their special day but I can’t help but be partial to the shots that were taken outside of the Bakers Chocolate Condominiums. Being a florist here in Dorchester for the past 37 years and only a couple blocks from Baker Square these shots are very familiar to me and when I saw them, I just new we had to post them on our blog…

The altar pieces were designed in a clear glass vase, allowing you the opportunity to serve for double duty at the reception as long as the church allows.

St Gregories altar looks breathtaking!

Amazing Train

The high centerpieces were designed in gold cylinder vases with  luscious peonies, beautiful snap dragons, roses, ranunculus and topped with curly willow branches.

A huge Thank you goes out to Abby & Kevin for allowing us to be a part of their special day and to Erica Ferrone Photography for her expertise behind the lens.

 

That Old September Feeling

03 Sep

written by Janet Lee Harrold

1393635_10153385135100580_667555298_n

I have to admit it, I absolutely despise the fact that we have to bid adieu to the phenomenal great summer weather and the colorful gardenscapes that I have seen throughout the city this year-but when September rolls in and the crispy autumn air is ubiquitous in the early morning, I know without a doubt it is time for cozy sweaters, spiced lattes,  homemade apple pie and everything pumpkin flavored!

1379202_10153385086175580_761121086_n

Working at Cedar Grove Gardens all these years, fall has become my favorite season. The garden center is full of autumnal colors and textures. Mum plants, crimson colored  grasses, ornamental kale, gourds,  and pumpkins of all sizes and colors. I especially love when we get that rare shipment of white and green pumpkins.  We absolutely love adding these fall elements to our container gardens or to a grapevine wreath that will welcome your guest at the front door when they come to visit.

941490_10153385135135580_1508664495_n

September also means that our annual Harvest Festival is just around the corner. This year it will be on Sunday October 29th,  a date you will want to save for sure. Our Harvest Festival brings so much joy to the little ones in our neighborhood as they have a chance to boast their favorite costumes. Pinata’s filled with candy  and coins are always a delight, but the big attraction is the horse drawn wagon ride through the brilliant fall foliage and fallen leaves over at Cedar Grove Cemetery.

1384364_10153385135465580_1856600649_n   1382017_10153385087330580_1792659367_n

996029_10153293712575580_1748019448_n

So you see, September is not all that bad, it is the doorway to the best season of all.

Protect Your Garden Now From Pests With These DIY Hacks!

24 Aug

When we imagine the perfect garden, certain images come to mind. Whether they be
the immaculate rose bushes that dotted the gardens of my childhood or an ethereal
koi pond. Perhaps, a row of veggies or two and one can never forget the large,
preferably old family tree perfect for games of hiding and seek or for a shady spot to
picnic under.
However, some things can dampen our vision for a beautiful garden. These
creatures, though a part of nature, play havoc on our gardens and throw our once
pleasant grove into disarray. Today we are going to be unpacking the various ways
you can get to pest proof your garden and have it back in shape in no time at all.
Creating an Action Plan
Firstly, be sure to figure out what type of animal or insect is attacking your sanctuary.
Next, try your best to ensure your garden is as unpalatable to those little critters as
humanly possible. It can be done ethically by removing hiding places like a huge pile
of leaves or a hollowed out log. If you are facing a squirrel, rodent or large animal
problem, then you may want to consider putting up fencing around your plants.
But what if you are facing something decidedly creepier and slightly crawly, well then
you may want to consider using a homemade and fully organic pesticide to target the
insects rather than using a commercial variety that may have chemicals that can
negatively affect the environment.
The hacks
For those eager to preserve their beloved veggie patch, look no further than chicken
wire. By placing a chicken wire cloche over your greens not only will the dogs but
also any other curious ones will also be staved off from your grub. The best part
about the chicken wire cloches is that they can also be used as decorative elements
for inside your house as well.
Tired of the rather slimy snails and slugs raging against your well-cultivated
landscape, then perhaps the answer might lie in your breakfast. Eggshells, when
ground up, are entirely organic, natural repellent to snails and slugs. Simply take a
whole bunch of eggshells, grind them up in your blender and then plant them in the
soil to protect your flowers and vegetable patch.
Another idea to help preserve your foliage is to raise your garden bed, as it makes it
a lot harder for small pests and animals to reach the flowers and attack them. Also,
raised garden beds have been found to be better for gardeners who suffer from back
pain, as it reduces the amount of bending through increasing the height of the plants
close to the gardener’s height.

A further idea to combat, yet another pest known to wreak havoc on even the best
maintained of gardens is weeds. You can make an all-natural, environmentally
friendly weed killer that suppresses the growth of weeds. The potent aroma of
vinegar is known to deter pests from venturing into gardens as well, so this is a two
in one solution that is both budget and nature-friendly.
To avoid making a fool of yourself while preparing your lawn for its usual invasion,
make sure to engage in safety practices at all times when working with tools and try
to avoid common mishaps by thoroughly reading through the instructions of the DIY
project.
All in all, DIY hacks seem to be one of the easiest ways to protect your garden from
the intelligent little creatures that nature has filled our gardens. For more inspiration
on gardens and to see a host of beautiful flowers and other plants, be sure to visit
and support your local flower stores such as Cedar Grove Gardens and fall in love
with flowers all over again.
Bio: Sarah shares the ins and outs of home improvement on her blog, The DIY
Hammer. Learn more about how to make your own projects on her blog!

Fall yard preperation

16 Aug

 

by Janet Lee Harrold

Get a head start on next season now!

I know, I know…we are certainly not ready for summer to be over so the last thing we want to start thinking about is preparing our yard for the fall, or even better next spring. I’m thinking we should  ease in to it slowly, while you are out there grilling your burgers this summer, just take a glance around your yard and take inventory of what needs to be done. Now is a good time to fill in those voids that you noticed this year.  In fact now is actually the perfect time to get perennials on sale and what do ya know, we just so happen to have them on sale at Cedar Grove Gardens in the garden center right now, what perfect timing! Though you may not want to spend the last few dog days of summer planting for next year, come next spring you will be so glad that you did. We have a pretty good selection of day lilies, heuchera coral bells, astilbe, ferns, hosta and a few shasta daisys, gypsophila, foxglove, butterfly bush, ladies mantle…shall I go on?  Any way save a buck now and be thankful for the beauty you will see in your garden this spring, after all it will be here before you know it! While you are out there, think about fertilizing your grass, this is typically done around labor day. A low-nitrogen, slow release fertilizer is always a good choice. it keeps the grass from eating up all the nitrogen at once. Keep in mind that there is no need to fertilize shrubs and tree’s this time of year and also, you may want to put off pruning until spring, you don’t want to give your plants a fresh wound as winter will make them vulnerable to damage. So see, it’s not all work this time of year, just a little preparation that’s all.

It’s also a great time to plant a couple dozen bulbs. Remember that smile on your face after a long New England winter when that first sign of crocus, tulips and daffodils force there pretty heads through the cold ground to greet you, it’s as if they really know that you just can’t take anymore of the bitter cold weather and everything is going to be o.k.

 

 

So enough about next year, let’s talk about what you can expect to see this year in the garden center as we transition from summer to fall….autumn in your garden should be as abundant as spring and we are expecting shipments of beautiful mum plants, kale, seedum, ornamental grasses any day now and as soon as the heat breaks our usual load of pumpkins,corn and haystacks will fill the yard as we prepare for our annual Harvest Festival.

 

 

 

 

5 Questions to ask your wedding florist

10 Aug

 

On occasion we like to let guest bloggers that have relevant material to the floral industry post here on the Cedar Grove Gardens blog with the intention of keeping the content fresh and new and also from a different perspective. These words by Ayn Bernos, Content Manager for Wedding Favy are sure to enlighten you when you are in the beginning process of planning your big day.

 photo credit Jim Canole Photography

There are people who take flowers for granted, but little do they know, deciding which flowers to have on your special day is hard work, considering the variety of options available in the market. Your favorite flowers may or may not be in season, or it may not be fitting for your chosen theme or venue. This is why coordinating with your wedding florist is so crucial to the successful and beautiful wedding reception of your dreams.

So before anything else, here are five questions to ask your wedding florist:

  • Would you be willing to work with our budget?

 

    • First off, identify your budget. Be transparent about the kind of spending you’re willing to make, and discuss the terms and conditions with your florist. You must confirm that they will be willing to work within your budget to avoid any miscommunication down the road.
    • Additionally, your florist may have more and/or extra services, such as partnerships with other vendors and wedding coordinators. The wedding industry is a small circle after all, and you can always use this to your advantage.

 

  • What’s your specialty?

 

    • If you still have not decided on a theme and the flowers, relying on your florist’s expertise might just make it easier for you. They certainly have experienced various wedding events that required different designs, arrangements, and motifs. Moreover, they might also give you a fresher take on what suits you more as a bride. Which leads us to the next inquiry…

 

  • Is there a compilation of your previous projects and sample arrangements?

 

    • If you don’t already have an image in mind, why not try checking your florist’s portfolio and events from the past? It will give you the idea whether or not your vision for your wedding and their style match. In any case they don’t, you could start compromising and make the necessary adjustments to achieve your desired arrangement.

 

  • Do you accept more than one wedding on the same day?

 

    • Expectation management is always key to a good working relationship. Clarify the scope of work beforehand so you can keep track of how things are going to work out on the big day. Are they simply dropping the flowers off? Or are they setting up flowers at the venue? If that’s the case and they’re handling another wedding on the same day, would they have enough manpower to deliver the services they promised? Just some things to ponder upon.

 

  • Have you had an event at our wedding site? Are you familiar with the place?

 

    • Your florist may or may not have had projects at your wedding site. While that shouldn’t be a major consideration for selecting your vendor, such information would still help as your florist might be able to estimate and make the necessary adjustments according to your design agreement. Familiarity, in this case, is a bonus, since your florist already knows the measurements and ambiance of the place. Otherwise, be sure to take extra steps to fill this info gap! Show pictures, schedule a visit — those kinds of things. At the end of the day, the flowers and the quality of service are the top priorities.

 

Author Bio

Ayn Bernos is a writer, a Youtuber, and an advocate of happily ever afters. As a real life bride-to-be and the Content Manager for Wedding Favy, an online haven for themed and personalized wedding favors, she spends her days living and breathing wedding celebrations. She loves to write about all things bridal — from fun bachelorettes and intimate vows, to catering expenses and stationery ideas.

In case you were wondering…about Cedar Grove Gardens

19 Jun

written by Janet Lee Harrold

Though most of our loyal customers already know the scope of what we do at Cedar Grove Gardens, I think it is always a good reminder to keep our customers both new and old (haha)  informed. It’s sometimes hard to believe but we have been in business for 37 years now (wow) and many of you have been with us from the beginning (we won’t mention any names) a few of our staff members have been as well. This blog is just a way of letting our new comers know what is in service for them as well as a gentle reminder to our longstanding customers.

This time of year we are full swing in the garden center, it is bursting with color and fragrance. You can find annuals and perennials, herbs, soil and wind spinners. Our staff in the garden center are  always happy to assist you in making the right choices for your yard. In addition to the garden center we offer a number of off site services. We are happy to work with you on landscaping projects as well as planting window boxes, patio planters and container gardens.

In the fall our garden center stocks pumpkins, kale, wheat, mums and anything that you can possibly imagine at Harvest Time. It is also the time of year that we host our annual “Harvest Festival”  we encourage the children to attend this festival in their favorite Halloween costume. We pass out balloons, apple cider, popcorn and the kids have loads of fun busting our candy and money filled pinata’s. If that isn’t enough fun we offer a horse drawn carriage ride that takes place across the street in the Cedar Grove Cemetery.  All FREE of charge!

For the adults who are eager to start the holiday season, we host a popular event here at the shop often times it is in November, but this year it will be held October 23rd, 24th and 25th. “Evening of Inspiration” is one of our most sought after events, R.S.V.P required. There is a ticket charge for this event but your money is well spent. It is a catered event and an evening of sipping and entertainment as we demonstrate how to get your home ready for the holidays, offering tips and inspiration from the many talented floral experts here on staff. You can come by yourself or with a group of friends, we guarantee you will not be disappointed!

 

 

 

During the winter months, our garden center is choc full of Christmas trees, custom designed wreaths (a service that not many provide) and roping. During this time of year we also do a few off site design jobs. We offer in home and commercial decorating for the Holidays. Inside the shop you will be captivated by the variety of beautifully decorated trees on display, often decorated in different themes and always  adorned with the most unusual Christmas tree ornaments that you will ever find.  You may even catch a glimpse of our upside down tree. Come in to be inspired and be prepared to be wowed. It’s our busiest time of the year!

 

What a lot of people don’t realize (and this surprises me every time) is that inside the flower shop we also have an extensive gift shop, a hidden gem if you will. We carry a very sweet line and sometimes unusual line of unique gifts. Many things that you won’t find in the stores.  You can expect to see items that local artisans have created, In fact “Motowi Tiles” are a popular seller here in the shop, If you are in the market for an accent lamp, we have some great finds that are sure to add to the character and charm of your decor.  We have fine pottery, lanterns, wall hangings, we carry gourmet candies and foods, funny cocktail napkins oh and if you want to know how to mix the best cocktail, we have books that will show you just that. We stock the funniest and nicest greeting cards (a thing that people think is becoming a lost art, but we know better).

In addition to all the fun things listed above, we can’t loose site of the fact that we are a full service flower shop. We are fortunate enough to have a flower market so close by so we visit and shop there every single day, this is the main reason why you can count on having fresh flowers and plants when you order from Cedar Grove Gardens.

A few of the everyday flower needs that we service on a regular basis are for both happy and sad occasions. In addition to all of the Holidays (and believe me there are many) we commonly design flowers for birthdays, anniversaries, proms and  sympathy, we send flowers to cheer people up when they are sick or flowers to say I love you.

Speaking of I love you’s can we talk about weddings? On average we book about 75 weddings a year! (Yikes).  We are a full service florist, this means that we meet with you a number of times during the planning stages of your big day, we provide consultations, on site visits and samples…. we don’t just drop off your beautiful blooms and let you fend for yourself, we take pride in our work and we realize that the beauty is in the details, we deliver the personal flowers to you, we set up the ceremony flowers and we transport them to the reception if need be, we also deliver the centerpieces to your reception, this can be as simple as setting them on the table or as elaborate as setting up the entire facility,  maybe you have rented a chuppah or archway from us and it needs the touch of a  floral expert, we are happy to provide that service as well. Oh and the work load doesn’t stop there. We typically go back the same evening and collect any rental containers that may have been used to enhance the beauty of the floral elements that were provided, so you see, when you hire us to do your wedding, we are going to go that extra mile to ensure that your day is as perfect as it was meant to be.

Luscious Bouquets Rachel Red Photography

We also host wedding shows here in the shop, offering the hottest of trends and allowing you to see and hold flowers from all four seasons. No matter what time of year our wedding show is held we’ve got your month covered!

All in all this was my brief.. lol summary of what we do on a regular basis and the services that we provide to you. I hope it was helpful and I hope that you stop in to our little hidden gem, a sliver of Dorchester that many don’t even realize exists.

Art Exhibit at The Ashmont Grill

29 May

If you have been a long standing customer of Cedar Grove Gardens then it will be no surprise to you that the staff here is multi talented even beyond the beautiful floral creations that they design on a daily basis. Mitchell and Janet have both worked for Cedar Grove Gardens for many years but in their spare time they put down their petals and floral knives and trade them for a paintbrush and a palette knife.

The exhibit is currently on display at The Ashmont Grill and will remain up until the 1st week of  July, 555 Talbot Ave in Dorchester, Ma. 02124  If you are available on Monday June 5th at 6:00p.m. head on over there for an opening reception sponsored by the Ashmont Grill.

Tips for Growing Delicious Tomatoes This Season

23 May

On Today’s blog we have the pleasure of posting for guest blogger Jackie Edwards. Though we sell vegetable and herb plants already started in the garden center here at Cedar Grove Gardens  she has written an informative article on starting from seed.  Thank you Jackie!

Growing Tomatoes: Greenhouse Or Outdoors?

Growing tomatoes can be quite fulfilling. If done well, you can yield a bumper crop without having to work too hard. However, your crop’s productivity is greatly influenced by how you choose to go about the entire process. One of the things that you must consider is whether you are going to grow them outside the old fashioned way or whether you are going to use a green house. A lot has been said about both options, but both methods can work when all the proper growing procedures are adhered to in each case.

Things To Consider About Tomatoes

Being tropical plants, tomatoes require at least eight hours of sunlight every day. It is also important to note that tomatoes require soil with a pH of between 6.0 and 6.8, so if the soil in your area does not meet such requirements, you need to determine how much manure or fertilizer you will need to reach these acidity levels. Tomatoes also require at least two inches of water every week.

Growing Tomatoes Outside

If you are planning to grow tomatoes outside, you need to do so in the summer. You also need to do so in an area that gets adequate sunshine throughout the summer. It is important to consider that most tomato varieties have long growing seasons of 70 to 80 days, so it is advisable to plant the seeds 6 to 8 weeks before summer starts, and this needs to be done indoors or in a covered place away from the frost outside. As the warmth of the summer draws near, you should prepare the ground outside with a good deal of garden compost as well as a healthy helping of general purpose fertilizer. For the provision of water, you should place an adequate number of sprinklers to ensure that every plant gets its fair share of water. When transferring the seedlings, you should plant them 18 inches to 24 inches apart. You must also spray the tomatoes with the recommended pesticides. You can get more information on that from your local crop specialists.  In addition, to help to control pests, you would also do well to plant some companion plants that are known to ward off pests alongside the tomatoes. Some ideal companion plants for tomatoes include basil, chives, and mint.

Growing Tomatoes In A Greenhouse

Opting to grow the tomatoes in a greenhouse gives you the freedom to plant the tomatoes at any time because in a greenhouse the light and warmth that the tomatoes require is provided by auxiliary lights and heaters. Tomatoes requires temperatures of 21C – 24C (70F – 75F), so you must count the cost of the electricity or fuel required to keep the plants warm throughout the entire growing season. In addition, for greenhouses, it is advisable to install water lines under the soil surface for the disbursement of water. You must also have sufficient in-greenhouse water storage. It is important to note that you must create sufficient ventilation in the greenhouse because tomatoes require healthy balances of carbon dioxide and oxygen in the air around them. Adequate air circulation also helps to keep off pests and diseases.