Save the Date, July 7th, for Our 4th Annual Through the Garden Gate Tour

The Ewing Green Team, the West Trenton Garden Club and local Girl Scout Troop #70138 are excited to invite you to our 2018 Through the Garden Gate Tour of Ewing and its environs!  This year we will showcase a number of new gardens and highlight improvements to some of the gardens from prior years.  Most of our gardens follow sustainable landscaping practices and a few are even National Wildlife Federation  or North American Butterfly Association certified. Following previous tours in June and in September, our tour this year in early July will give the gardeners a chance to show off their gardens in at the height of the gardening season!

Our Mission

This fourth garden tour of Ewing is being held to promote our mutual causes of civic pride, beautification, sustainability, and youth development. It is our belief that showcasing some of Ewing’s noteworthy gardens is a great way to help us engage more people in beautifying our town. A beautiful town elicits pride among its residents and helps to build community. We believe that it can all begin with one garden at a time.

Event Details

The 2018 Through the Garden Gate Tour will be a self-guided ticketed event, featuring gardens throughout Ewing, with a couple of stand-out gardens from neighboring towns.  The tour date is set for Saturday, July 7th.  Gardens will be open from 10 am – 5 pm.

Start out at the Ewing Senior and Community Center.  Be sure to check out the Green Team and Environmental Commission’s brand-new pollinator garden in the building’s central courtyard.  A work in progress, it features some of the requirements necessary to support wildlife in the garden; pollinator friendly native plants, a water source; cover and food.  We are also quite delighted to report that while the perennials are still small, there are monarch eggs an larvae on the milkweed plants.  We are looking forward to our butterflies shortly!

Purchase your ticket and receive a pamphlet containing the name of each garden, its location, as well as a brief description, and a map.  There are 20 gardens to tour this year.  From the public gardens such as the Birmingham Pocket Garden and the Kitchen Garden at the Benjamin Temple House, to first offerings of a couple of newer gardens, to the long established gardens that are ever still constantly changing, we this that we have a lot to offer.  We hope that you will ask lots of questions while you tour as many as you can.

Look for additional information on this page as we firm up participants and details of the day.  We hope to see you at the gardens!

Event Summary

Date: Saturday, July 7
Time: 10 am to 5 pm
Locations: Noteworthy gardens in Ewing and its environs
Startup: Out front of the Ewing Senior and Community Center, 999 Lower Ferry Rd, Ewing  (rain location – front lobby)
Cost: $10

Below is the map of the gardens on this year’s tour.  We think that you’ll be excited to see some of the great gardens in town.  We hope to see you there!

And the Winners Are…

Garden Contest Winners Announced

Two great big “green” thumbs up have been awarded by the judges to the all of the gardeners in Ewing’s first annual Garden Contest.  “We were very excited to visit the gardens and extremely impressed by their diversity and quality,” said Garden Contest co-chair Karen Dupee.  “Every entry had its own unique flavor and charm.”   Fellow chair Joanne Mullowney stated, “While we could only award to the top garden in each category, we felt that they were all winners in an extremely competitive event.  There were so many hidden gems that we did not know existed in our town.  Ewing is blessed with some extremely talented gardeners.”

Ewing homeowners, businesses and organizations and schools and community gardeners were invited to participate in the Garden Contest, being run this summer for the first time by the Ewing Green Team, West Trenton Garden Club and Girl Scout Troop #70138.  We were extremely excited by the turn out and delighted to find so many active gardeners and beautiful gardens in Ewing.  In an extremely tight contest, the judges selected five gardens to represent the following categories: Best residential flower garden, best residential vegetable and herb garden, best residential specialty garden, best school/community garden and best garden by a local business.

Each winner received a rain barrel constructed by the Ewing Green Team and the Girl Scouts and gift cards donated by local area nurseries and landscaping companies.

Judging was performed by members of the West Trenton Garden Club and event co-chairs Karen Dupee and Joanne Mullowney.

And the winners are…

Best Residential Flower Garden

Winners – Linda and Gary Rostron
Neighborhood – Glendale

Entitled “Five Fountains,” this retreat on bustling Parkway Ave is landscaped front and back starting  with a colorful curbside garden planted with tough perennials that resist foot traffic, drought and winter road salt.   Enter through a side courtyard garden with the first of the five fountains and wind chimes that set the mood for a beautiful escape.  Linda and Gary have worked to create a haven for birds, beneficial insects and even their gardening nemesis – squirrel and rabbits.  Sustainable landscaping practices are in evidence with rain barrels and composting and pathways consisting of natural mulch.  The garden features multiple seating areas including a central gazebo, a shady back patio, and of course, multiple fountains and water features.

Judge’s comment:  “This garden was very pleasing to the eye.  It shows that the gardener took a plain backyard and made it into a beautiful outdoor living space for humans and birds.  Everything in the yard has been selected with forethought and it shows.”

Best Residential Vegetable and Herb Garden

Winner – Billyann Stark
Neighborhood – Palmer Lane

This super productive vegetable garden stands as an example of excellent vegetable gardening practices and showed the true spirit of the gardener.  Billyann worked throughout the season to create a beautiful, productive garden with an excellent variety of vegetables with a very nice inclusion of perennials/ornamentals to beautify the garden.  Especially notable was her daylily collection.  The plants were healthy and in good condition, especially considering that this is approaching the end of the warm vegetable gardening season.  We applaud the use of sustainability practices in the Stark garden.

Judge’s comments:  “Well designed vegetable garden which includes a large variety of vegetable items.  Use of industrial cloth to control weeks was a good idea for maintaining cleanliness and neat appearance of plants.   Great use of rain barrels.  Plants are staked well.  Timely harvesting of vegetables to avoid appearance of rotten vegetables.”

Best Residential Specialty Garden

Winner – Dianne Dickinson
Neighborhood – Wilburtha

This lovely garden on the western side of town is cared for by the former president of the West Trenton Garden Club, Dianne Dickinson, and it shows.  Dianne’s garden exemplifies many of the methods we can use to create a healthy habitat and improve the landscape for all of us and our partners.  There is visual interest planned for in every season with an excellent integration of lighting, ornamentation, and perennials throughout.  A beautiful and serene oasis to enjoy all seasons.

Judge’s comments:  “Raspberry bushes with vegetable plants. Tomato garden. Compost jar. Integration of lighting, sculpures and perennials throughout.”

Best School/Community Garden

Winner – Parkway Elementary School
Neighborhood –  Little Alendal

This newer garden is off to a great start with Silver and Bronze Eco Schools awards and now our own Best School /Community Garden award.  It is also a certified school yard habitat and wild life sanctuary.  Managed by teacher, Debbie Cornelius with her 2nd grade students, we were also excited to see that there are plans to get the PRE-school involved this year.

Judges’ Comments:  “It’s great to see how the school is adapting their open space for education.  This garden has so much potential in the years to come. We loved the memorial garden; recognizing teachers that have passed is a way to still stay connected. This garden is a currently certified school yard habitat and wild life sanctuary and the children have used water bottles and coffee containers for bird feeders and bird houses.  What a great use of repurposing!  We were also impressed by the program to keep vegetative food scraps from the cafeteria.  Keep up the great job, would like to see this garden in the future!   ”

Best Business/Organization Garden

Winner – Nick Fifis, Erini Restaurant
Neighborhoohd – In a neighborhood all its own, situated between Delaware Rise and Mountain View on River Road

In a class all its own also, this wonderful garden created by chef and co-owner Nick Fifis, wows you on approach.   Hot, tropical colors were on vivid display, accompanying the bamboo tiki bar created from the bamboo grove on site, both transporting the summer diner to an island paradise.  Displays are switched out seasonally and mums, scarecrows and pumpkins abound as the autumn display is currently in the works.

Judges’ Comments:  “When we walked through this garden we were transported into a space of tranquility and peace.  We loved the separate garden areas from the outdoor seating to the bar.  Other highlights included the wide use of ornaments throughout the garden (particularly loved the glass.)  The owner, hand carved sculptures throughout the garden were marvelous and we loved learning the family history behind the fig trees.  Excellent attention was paid to soil building and composting as well as organic practices for fertilization and pest control, and heavy mulching.  This was wonderful to experience as a judge and makes one want to come back and experience it as a diner.”

Thanks to Our Local Businesses and Partners

Thanks are owed to all of the local businesses that contributed so handsomely to enable the success of  both the contest and the tour.  Minuteman Press very generously donated all of the printed materials including the tour post cards and  brochures.  And the nurseries and landscaping companies that contributed toward our prizes included:

This event would not have been possible without their very generous contributions.

And finally, we owe special thanks for our event partner, the Ewing Township Historic Preservation Society.  Not only did they display their own lovely colonial kitchen garden, but they generously allowed us to set up on site as the starting location for the tour.  They are  fabulous event partner!

In visiting so many of the gardens we were delighted to observe that Ewing gardeners are taking the approach of ensuring chemical free organic living spaces for our critical pollinators and other wildlife.  Many sustainable landscaping practices were in evidence such as composting, extensive use of mulching, rain barrels and more.  This is essential as we hope to leave our world a better place for us and the future generations.

We believe that showcasing some of Ewing’s noteworthy gardens is a great way to help us engage more people in beautifying our town, a beautiful town that elicits pride among its residents and helps to build community. It all begins with one garden at a time.  So, we invite you to consider entering your garden in both our tour and contest next year.  And, don’t be surprised if you get a knock on your door sometime if we are driving by and happen to notice that “a gardener definitely lives here!”   We invite you to grow a greener Ewing along with us.


2017 Garden Contest

Calling all Ewing Gardeners!

It’s summer time and we love to be out in the garden at this time of the year, getting our hands in the dirt. From digging in the dirt of our garden beds and planters, to laboring in community garden plots, we are all engaging yet again in that most fulfilling pastime of growing our food and beautiful landscapes, all while growing a more beautiful community!  The Ewing Green Team, the West Trenton Garden Club and Ewing Girl Scout Troop #70138 hope that you will want to show off all the fruits of your labors and enter our first ever Ewing 2017 Garden Contest!   Please enter and show off all the beauty that you have labored so hard to create.  This contest is for amateur gardeners only, so don’t be put off, give it a try!

The contest is being run in conjunction with our Fall 2017 Garden Tour.  It is separate from the tour and you don’t have to participate in the tour to enter the contest.  We realize that not every gardener is confident or experienced enough to showcase their garden on a garden tour.  So, to encourage more homeowners to join in our beautification efforts we are running the Garden Contest.  

Important Dates

Entry deadline – Tues, Aug 1
Finalist Notification – Fri, Sept 1
Judges visit gardens – Week of Sept 5
2017 Through the Garden Gate Tour – Winners announced Sat/Sun, Sept 16 & 17
Winners will also be announced at Ewing’s Community Fest celebration on Sat, Sept 23rd

We believe that growing gardens grows community!  We invite you to grow a greener Ewing along with us and show off all the beauty you have labored so hard to create.   This contest is for amateur gardeners only, so don’t be put off, give it a try!

For additional contest details such as eligibility, judging and how to enter, check out our 2017 Garden Contest page.


There will be prizes! We have a rain barrel for each winner and gift certificates from local nurseries.  More information will be coming soon!

Through the Garden Gate Tour

The Ewing Green Team, the West Trenton Garden Club, and Girl Scout Troop 70138 invite you on Saturday, June 11th to join us a our Through the Garden Gate Tour in which we are showcasing noteworthy Ewing Gardens!   You can visit any of 13 interesting “gardens” — from the traditional, with lovely flowers and plants, to the unique with a collection of cherished memorabilia.   Concepts such as “upcycling”, composting, naturalizing, and urbanizing are demonstrated throughout the gardens. Also, the approaches of ensuring pesticide and chemical free organic living spaces for our critical pollinators are essential as we hope to leave our world a better place for us and the future generations. We are in this “new place right here” together – no need to leave our Garden State we love!!!.

This is a self-directed driving tour and will be held RAIN OR SHINE.  We have included a map with this brochure.   Please pay / begin the tour at

Garden #1
Ewing Historic Preservation Society
27 Federal City Rd (Drake Farm Park), Ewing.

Here you will purchase this brochure, which serves as your ticket.

The tour is being held to promote our mutual causes of beautification, sustainability, and youth development. We believe that showcasing some of Ewing’s gardens is a great way to engage more people in beautifying Ewing. It all begins with one garden at a time.  We hope that next year you will join us to show off yours!

Look for a pretty paper flower out front at each garden, created by our girl scouts. Thank you for your support.

Date: Saturday, June 11th
Time: 10 – 5
Location: Startup at the Ewing Twp. Historic Preservation Society, 27 Federal City Road, Ewing (maps will be provided)
Cost: $10

For more information go to our Tour page.