Harrisburg’s suburbs have some excellent garden stores and greenhouses, places that certainly will be packed this month with people claiming their spring plants and supplies.
But what if you’re a city resident looking to fill your (often) small backyard with some greenery and color? You also have options—and you may not even need to strap yourself into your car for a trip across the river.
First stop: the Broad Street Market, which has several ways to slake your gardening thirst.
In the brick building, Mel and Barb Glick of Floral Bouquet and Peach Ridge Produce sell a wide range of herbs, fruits, vegetables and fresh-cut flowers. For nearly a decade, the Glicks have provided the city with locally sourced crops from their 40-acre farm in Perry County.
Barb Glick has especially enjoyed sharing advice with city-goers who do not have the space for large gardens but still have a passion for sustainable living. She says that gardens do not have to be in the ground—planters, window boxes and small yards can all grow beautiful and edible goods.
“Now is the time to pick up seeds at your local hardware store and decide what you want to plant and where you’d like to plant them,” Glick said.
Starting this month, Peach Ridge will sell herb plants such as rosemary, thyme, cilantro, parsley, chives, lavender and sage, as well as, tomatoes, lettuce, cabbage and pepper plants.
Growing a garden does not need to be a complicated endeavor. Herbs provide easy, flavorful additions to any meal and can help lower regular grocery bills. Simply buying a small pot, picking a few herbs, and giving it daily attention can start you on the journey to sustainable living.
“In April, before the last spring frost [April 12], I plant peas, spinach, lettuces, radishes, carrots and my favorite, flowers,” Glick said. “After the frost, I plant tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers.”
In addition to perusing goods from several vendors inside the market, gardeners should pass through on a Saturday or two, when, on nice days, pop-up vendors often fill the courtyard with greenhouse blossoms.
A few blocks down 3rd Street, florist Shawn Durborow-Bowersox has set up several wooden stands outside of his new retail space, Paper Moon Flowers and Events. There, you can find a variety of plants for sale, perfect for a window box, container garden or small flower or shade garden.
Step inside to discover a number of decorative items for your garden, such as statuary, wind chimes and homemade birdhouses, all lovingly curated by the owner.
“In the city, it’s really all about courtyard gardening,” Durborow-Bowersox said. “You can get more real estate, so to speak, by using containers for your plants.”
Up on Derry Street, you’ll discover the Allison Hill Farmers Market, which returns for a second year thanks to sponsor and organizer Tri-County Community Action. There, amidst the farm-grown food for sale, you also may find items that you can grow yourself, as well as informative classes on growing and maintaining an urban garden.
Speaking of urban gardens, Green Urban Initiative is gearing up for another year of community gardening in Harrisburg. Those interested in one of their plots can find them on Facebook.
If you’re after garden supplies, Hornungs True Value is the city’s tried-and-true hardware store, carrying an array of gardening tools and seeds to get your project started.
“From soil and fertilizer to seeds, pots and gardening tools, we want to be a one-stop shop for our community,” said David Arnold, Hornungs store manager. “We even deliver locally for those who do not have the transportation or the ability.”
Hornungs is preparing for the summer months by filling their shelves with indoor and outdoor plants. Arnold shared that “their store, often times, has more of a variety and provides more products than the large retailers.”
Then, once you’ve gathered all your supplies, Barb Glick from the Broad Street Market has one final piece of advice for folks ready to earn their green thumbs.
“When prepping for your garden, remember, plant with a purpose,” she said. “Think about what your family eats on a regular basis and what will add value.”
The Broad Street Market is located at N. 3rd and Verbeke streets, Harrisburg. For more information, visit www.broadstreetmarket.org.
Paper Moon Flowers and Events is located at 916 N. 3rd St., Harrisburg. For more information, visit their Facebook page.
Hornung’s True Value is located at 223 N. 2nd St., Harrisburg.
For more information about Green Urban Initiative, visit their Facebook page.
For more information about the Allison Hill Farmers Market, visit www.cactricounty.org.
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