Art and Garden tour highlights finest foliage

Published 12:00 am Friday, July 5, 2002

It’s hard to believe any nature lover would say something good happened when Dutch Elm Disease destroyed his trees. But 30 years ago when the Elms in Carlyle Matheson’s back yard died, he finally had the space and full sunlight needed to grow a charming flower garden.

Matheson’s is one of the eight gardens featured in this year’s Art and Garden tour, July 12 from 4-8 p.m. and July 13 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. This year’s tour boasts six new gardens to visit with the works of eight local artists scattered throughout the locations. Proceeds from this annual event go toward programs at the Albert Lea Art Center.

Visitors are welcome to start at any location on the tour; tickets are for sale at each garden and in advance at Anderson’s Hallmark locations, Ben’s Floral and Frame Designs, Turtle Dove Teahouse and at the Art Center. Tickets are $6 in advance and $8 on the day of the tour.

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Featured gardens and artists:

– Brad and Tempest Arends, 503 Park Ave. featuring artist Barb Butler Saturday. Multilevel perennial garden with hanging baskets and scenic views of Fountain Lake.

– Dan Hopper, 715 W. Park Ave. English perennial garden in front yard with a hosta garden in back.

– Henry and Lorraine Schaper, 919 Abbott featuring artist Deb Peterson both days. Perennial and bulb garden with raised beds, hanging baskets and potted plants. Peterson’s twisted and wired jewelry will be on display.

– Carlyle and Donna Matheson, 817 Abbott, featuring artist Beth Tostenson both days. Perennial garden with several different beds and flowering cacti, plus a beautiful Catalpa tree. Tostenson’s floral watercolors will be on display.

– Orrion and Sandy Roisen, 1010 Foothills Circle. A garden with a large variety of plants, from annuals and perennials to vegetables.

– Ron and Donna Widenhoefer, 309 Lloyd Place, featuring artists Harland Bang and Mary Sparks-Johnson. A tea rose garden accented by many other colorful flowering plants. Bang’s floral watercolors will be on display Friday night; watch Sparks-Johnson paint in the garden Saturday.

– Frank and Mary Trotter, 109 N. 7th Ave. featuring artists Leanne Marlow Castillo and Jan Schewe. Cozy garden divided into outdoor rooms with a mix annuals and perennials. Friday Castillo will be drawing sketches of visitors; Schewe will be painting watercolors in the garden Saturday.

– Steve and Lindee Ciavarelli, 1316 Frank Hall Dr. featuring artist Diane Radack. Free-form layered flowerbeds nestled with driftwood and rocks. Radack’s ceramic birdhouses, waterers and feeders will be positioned throughout the garden.