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Blue Moon Gardens: More Than a Family Nursery

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blue moon gardens tyler edome tx eguide 2Written and Photographed by Barbara King

It’s time to set aside your boots and heavy coats and pick up your gardening tools! Blue Moon Gardens, located five miles east of Edom, is a gardener’s paradise and a super “destination” day trip to get your garden growing.

The Gardens themselves are an oasis of landscaping and beauty, and you can get a first-hand glimpse of display gardens that will get your creative juices flowing. They feature organic gardening practices and only utilize natural products on their crops. They sell organic soil additives, fertilizers and products that are non-toxic to the environment.

The 6-acre tranquil setting is a mecca of all things “garden,” and the first thing you will see is the rustic 1920’s farmhouse, now their unique gift shop, featuring garden décor, candles, soaps, lotions, home scents, prints and the best in gardening books. The beautifully arranged displays will catch your eye as you wander through the shop with garden gadgets like rain gauges, garden kneelers, hats, birdhouses, chimes and pillows.

Co-owners Mary Wilhite and Sharon Lee Smith are the passionate, enthusiastic “plant geeks” that will talk your ear off about their love of gardening. As Mary explains, “we absolutely love this business because we get to share and create beauty and we’ve been lucky to have been doing it for over 20 years.”

blue moon gardens tyler edome tx eguide 3Grab a little red wagon, take your time and wander the gardens and you’ll spy fanciful garden art, outdoor kitchens, fountains, pottery and art to spruce up any outdoor area. It is a wild, yet very well-laid out treasure trove of garden delights. The Gardens are very much a relaxed, homey atmosphere and you will probably run into the two cats, Sweet Pea and Hank, either roaming the grounds or curled up in a cozy bed in the gift shop.

The twelve greenhouses on the property house unusual and different plants, “mostly cottage garden flowers, heirloom plants, herbs, shrubs, perennials, shrubs and roses, and tropicals,” explains Wilhite. With a staff of very knowledgeable and seasoned gardeners, you can get tips on seeding, growing cuttings, potting and watering, soils, and planting times.

With a degree in Horticulture, co-owner Sharon Smith is available to consult on your garden project on a variety of levels. Services range from an on-site visit and consultation through a detail drafted garden design. She loves to assist in the dreaming, planning and drafting of your space.

blue moon gardens tyler edome tx eguide 7Joanne Idell from Tyler has been a loyal visitor to Blue Moon Gardens for over twenty years. “It is the best nursery around, with the best variety,” she said. “I know that the plants are quality, hardy and healthy and not disease-ridden.” Mrs. Idell was in deep conversation with Kendel, “the man in the know” about shrubs and she said, “this is the place to come for ideas about new and different shrubs and plants that you might never have thought to utilize.”

You will find vegetables and herbs galore and a special shed that houses a multitude of pots, and plants that fare well in shade to roses and seeds. Along the walkways, you’ll find everything from vines, yucca plants, junipers, verbena, lavender, larkspur, zinnias and cosmos.

On this rainy Saturday, an enthusiastic Garden Club is meeting in lively discussion about this month’s topic, vegetable gardening. This group meets the second Saturday of the month and discusses a wide range of topics and shares best practices and growing tips. The Club is open to both experienced and new gardeners for an annual fee of $75. The Club members meet in January to plan discussion topics and upcoming meetings including Fragrance in the Garden, Succulents, Best Texas Natives and Plant Combinations for Beds or Containers. The group will also take a Garden tour during the month of May. For more information about the club, call (903)852-3897. Current members come in to meet, mingle and discuss from Athens, Canton, Wills Point and Dallas.

Mark your calendars to celebrate Spring at the Blue Moon Gardens Open House, scheduled for Saturday, April 25th, with special speakers, programs, food and plants, plants, more plants! The day will feature complimentary refreshments, knowledgeable folks sharing their expertise and food available from the Curbside Taco food truck. Starting at 10am, featured out on the lawn, will be representatives from Ridgetop Growers, Monrovia Nursery, East Texas Daylilies, and Bracy’s Nursery from South Louisiana.

blue moon gardens tyler edome tx eguide 1Speakers will include Dr. Brent Pemberton from Texas A&M Extension Service at 10am, Gabrielle Babcock from Monrovia Growers at 11am and Doug McKemie of East Texas Daylilies at 12 noon.

On Saturday, May 30th from 10am-4pm, the Gardens will host the East Texas Daylily Society, showcasing 75 different varieties of the flower, with members of the Society on hand with information and available to answer questions.

Blue Moon Gardens website (www.bluemoongardens.com) contains a plethora of information about all things ‘garden,’ including a spring to-do list, recipes, detailed information on planting, and how to add fragrance to your beds. This is also the place to keep up with the Gardens and subscribe to their e-letter or monthly newsletter. A listing of available workshops can also be found on the website, with minimal fees for a hands-on session for everything from creating a fairy garden, creating patio pots to even dying scarves.

Celebrate Spring and get your garden going by making Blue Moon Gardens your destination. The Gardens are open daily 9am-5pm daily, located at 13062 FM 279, Edom. Take Hwy 64 West, 2 miles past Pounds Field Airport and turn left on FM 279 (heading toward Edom and Ben Wheeler). The Gardens are 5 ½ miles down on the left on FM 279. For further information, call (903)852-3897.


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Art

Art in the Garden April 28th at the Rose Garden

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April 28th (11am-2pm) – 12th Annual Art in the Garden

The Tyler Parks and Recreation Department invites you to come paint or draw with us in the Tyler Rose Garden, 420 Rose Park Dr., Tyler.

Join local artists of all ages to paint. Bring your paints, any medium (paper or canvas) and an easel and create a masterpiece. Non-painters are welcome to view the garden and the artists at work.

A display of artwork will be shown in the exhibit area.

This is free to the public. Light refreshments will be served in the Rose Garden Center.

Art instructors are welcome to bring their students of any age.

For more info call (903)531-1214.

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Easter

April 21st: Lead the Way 5K and more Upcoming Races

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To be listed here is free! Send us info for your event go HERE.

To add a walk, run, or biking event, please send to, eguidemagazine@gmail.com. It is always free to list any event.

April 21st – Lead the Way 5K – Bring the whole family and come out and support our area schools. Register at tylerisd.org. This will begin at 8am and be held at Dr. Bryan C Jack Elementary, 1900 Balsam Gap Rd., Tyler.

April 28th – Diva Du will be held in Tyler. This beginner-friendly race now has an added distance for those seeking more of a challenge as well as a 5K option for those who still want to enjoy the Diva treatment without the full duathlon commitment. For more info go to facebook.com/thedivadu.

April 28th – Tyler Rose City Miracle Run – Run for the kids who can’t. Run for the kids in your life. Run to make miracles. Simply lacing up your shoes and participating in the 2018 Tyler Rose City Miracle Run can help make miracles for the sick and injured kids of Northeast Texas. This will be held at Rose Rudman Park, Tyler starting at 8am. Register at localraces.com.

May 12th – 2018 Komen Tyler Race for the Cure® Save the date for the 20th Anniversary of the Susan G. Komen Tyler Race for the Cure. At 7am, the Survivor Celebration opens. 8am, the Kids Dash begins. 9am, the 5k starts. This annual event raises funds for the breast cancer movement, thanks to supporters and survivors who step up and take action by fundraising for the cause. This will start at Bergfeld Park, 1501 S. Broadway, Tyler. To register go to komenectx.org.

July 4th – Freedom Fighter 5K will be held at Bergfeld Park. Registration is currently open at secure.getmeregistered.com/get_information.php?event_id=128684.

September 22nd – Pineywoods Ultra – Run through deep East Texas pine forests on a scenic course underneath towering pines. This diverse, single track course, almost entirely underneath a canopy of 100-foot tall pine timber, will keep you captivated as you navigate rolling hills through rooty and pine needle conditioned trails. Enjoy a post race refreshing swim in the 64-acre spring-fed lake while you rest and recover. As home to the forest race in our eco series, you won’t want to miss this unique chance to run with deer through the deep piney wood forests of Eastern Texas. This is a 5k, 10k, 25k, 50k, and 100k. Wind through deep green pine forests on rooty single track while chasing deer and other wildlife. Enjoy the dizzying and majestic pine canopy above as you are shaded on your adventure. Register at ultraexpeditions.com/thepineywoodsultra 

September 29th – ZERO Prostate Cancer Run/Walk features a 5K run/walk, 1 mile walk, Kids’ Superhero Dash for Dad, and virtual Snooze for Dudes program. ZERO is proud to partner with Urology Tyler, PA to end prostate cancer. Stick around for the family-friendly post-race celebration. Run/walk participants will receive tech shirts, free food and prizes, and the opportunity to connect with others who are impacted by prostate cancer. To register, go to support.zerocancer.org.

October 13th – 2018 Corkscrew Half will be held at Kiepersol Winery, 3933 FM 344 in Bullard. Register by e-mailing itri365meredith@gmail.com.

December 2nd – 2018 Tyler Half Marathon & 5K – This event will give athletes a tour unlike any other through the Rose City of Tyler, Texas. The event will start and finish from TB Butler Fountain Square in the center of downtown Tyler, Texas. More information can be found at tylerhalf.events and be sure to follow The Tyler Half Marathon & 5K on facebook.com/events/1565352873583566/

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Around East Texas

TJC Art Fest: This Week, Bell Tower Arts Journal” Launch Party, International Day

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Tyler Junior College, the Tyler Museum of Art and others, are once again offering a spring arts festival packed with tons of events and performances. The TJC April Arts Festival will be collaborating with the Tyler Museum of Art the entire month of April.

The festival is a celebration of the dynamic arts programs at Tyler Junior College. These programs provide rich learning experiences. This event is a collaboration of The Bell Tower Arts Journal, International Day, the Tyler Museum of Art, and the Art, Music, Theater, Speech, Dance, and Visual Communications departments. Back again, the local CBS 19 will be supporting media underwriting.

The Annual Arts Festival germinated from the notion of Dr. Linda Gary (TJC Dean of Humanities, Communications and Fine Arts) a few years ago. Dr. Gary’s original thoughts of the festival bloomed from her idea of outstretching the outstanding activities that the multiple departments at the college conduct and coordinate. Why not share the greatness? There are some entertaining, cultural, enlightening events taking place at the upcoming festival. Find the ones you are interested in, check them all out, and reconnect to one of Tyler’s trademarks and come celebrate the arts.

2018 April Art Festival events include:

  • On view all of April – “Sticks and Stones: Works by Helen Altman” and the 14th Annual High School Art Exhibits will be at the Tyler Museum of Art all month. For more info, go to tylermuseum.org.
  • April 2nd-27th – A Visual Communications Exhibition will be displayed in the Pirtle Technology Building, Pirtle Phase 4.
  • Through April 25th – The Amazing Hancock Brothers will be on exhibit at the TJC Wise Auditorium Art Gallery.
  • Through April 27th – East Texas CARES Food Pantry is hosting a Food Drive, sponsored by The Art Club. Donations may be dropped off in the Jenkins Hall Art Department Lobby.

  • April 16th (2pm) – “The Bell Tower Arts Journal” Launch Party will be held in the TJC Jenkins Hall Art Department Lobby. The unveiling of the latest edition of “The Bell Tower Arts Journal” includes selected artwork, poetry and prose from students.
  • April 17th (9am-5pm) – TJC’s Annual International Day celebrates diversity and worldwide cultures with an amazing lineup of events and activities in the Apache Rooms of the Rogers Student Center.
  • April 17th (10am) – Distinguished Lecture Series: Hearing Each Other: Tolerance & Interfaith Dialogue will be held in the Wise Auditorium.
  • April 17th (7:30pm) – Wind Ensembles and Symphonic Band will be in concert in Wise Auditorium. Come enjoy an evening of great music performed by students in the TJC Percussion Ensembles and Symphonic Band. Free admission.
  • April 18th (12 noon) – Coffee House: Chamber Singers will perform at Tyler Museum of Art in the lobby.
  • April 18th (5:30pm) – Forensics (Speech and Debate) Team Showcase will be held in the Jean Browne Theatre.
  • April 20th (1pm) – Student Recital Series will be held in the TJC Jean Browne Theatre.
  • April 23rd (3pm) – The Student Film Festival be be held in the TJC Apache Rooms. a
  • April 23rd (3pm) – “Be An Anchor” will be held in the Newsroom, Potter 203.
  • April 24th (10am) – Rock the Garden games and activities will be held in the TJC Genecov Garden area.
  • April 24th (3pm) – Azerbaijani Music Concert & Workshop will be held in the TJC Apache Rooms.
  • April 24th (7:30pm) – Spring Choral Concert will be presented in the TJC Wise Auditorium.
  • April 25th (12 noon) – THUNDERDOME Art Competition will take place where there is only one winner – all the other entries will be destroyed by the annihilator. BYOT (Bring your own tears) to Jenkins Courtyard. Special guests will be the Amazing Hancock Brothers!
  • April 25th (2pm) – Amazing Hancock Brothers Printmaking demonstration will be held in the TJC Jenkins Hall Art Department Lobby.
  • April 25th (12 noon) – Coffee House: Faculty Recital will be performed in the Tyler Museum of Art Lobby. Concert and museum admission is free.
  • April 25th-28th (7:30pm) and April 28th (2pm) – “Hamlet” will be presented in the TJC Jean Browne Theatre.
  • April 25th (7:30pm) – TJC Jazz Ensembles will perform in the Wise Auditorium.
  • April 27th – The Performance Grant Student Showcase Art Exhibition will on display in the Wise Auditorium Art Gallery.

Most events are free to attend and everyone is welcome. There is something for everyone offered during this month-long festival. Find the events, exhibits and performances you are interested in and come enjoy. It really is the best ticket in town!

Tyler Junior College is located at 1400 E. Fifth St., Tyler. The Tyler Junior College Wise Auditorium Fine Arts Building and TJC’s Jean Browne Theatre in the Wise Cultural Arts Building are located near South Mahon Ave. across from the Tyler Museum of Art. More info can be found at tjc.edu/artsfestival or call (903)510-2200.

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