Tour will highlight exceptional gardens in Orleans County

By Kristina Gabalski, Correspondent Posted 3 July 2016 at 12:00 am

Eileen Sorochty of Albion shows off the blooms on one of the clematis vines which grace her home garden in Albion. Her garden is one of six featured on this year’s Garden Path Tour on July 16.

Orleans County Master Gardeners will host their 2016 Garden Path Tour on July 16, featuring six gardens, mainly in Albion and Medina.

Master Gardner Eileen Sorochty is helping to organize the event and her garden in Albion is one of the six “Garden Stars” included on the tour.

Sorochty’s garden surrounding her home on East Avenue is a mix of relaxed borders and beds which feature spring bulbs, perennials, flowering shrubs, and garden art and ornaments. Additionally, Sorochty grows vegetables and has plantings devoted to attracting and hosting butterflies as well as other pollinators.

The house she lives in is her childhood home, and some of Sorochty’s mother’s plants – including iris and a clematis – are still part of the garden.

A bright red Monarda or Bee balm blossom in Eileen Sorochty’s garden welcomes pollinators.

She grows heirloom tomatoes which she calls, “different and tasty,” as well as vegetables completely new to her like bok choy.

The garden features a small patio pond and solar night features and Sorochty says she is working towards all organic gardening practices and a new composting system.

Other 2016 Garden Stars are Sharon Sugar, who is a neighbor of Sorochty’s. Her garden is child-friendly with play equipment, a pond garden, outdoor rooms and seating areas.

The mostly shaded garden of Sharon Sugar in Albion features several outdoor seating areas and a rose garden.

The English gardens of Brandi Zavitz on Center Street in Medina feature perennials and a pond; Ruth Shewan’s country garden on West Shelby Road in Medina includes perennial beds and a greenhouse. A memorial garden honors the Native American relics said to be buried on the property.

Ann and Stephen Bunch’s garden on Howell Parkway in Medina is a relaxed English garden that is bird-friendly. Additionally, the Bunch’s have many trees and a Pagoda garden.

Jeannette Riley has an eclectic garden at her home on Braley Street, by the canal in Albion.  It is filled with re-purposed glass/metal/gates/doors/ knobs and more. Riley grows perennials and flowering shrubs and her garden features a mini guest house with a patio.

Eileen Sorochty uses an old wooden wagon bed for a fairy garden. She stores the elements indoors during the winter.

“You can start where ever you want, we will have a map of the gardens for you,” Sorochty says regarding the tour.

The Garden Path Tour will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. rain or shine on July 16. Tickets are are available at Orleans County Cornell Cooperative Extension – 12690 Rt. 31 in Knowlesville. Call 798-4265 for more information. Tickets are also available the day of the tour at any of the featured gardens. Sorochty requests that you bring correct change for tickets if purchasing day-of. Participants will receive a hand-stamp to show that they have paid and will have their names entered in a drawing for a gift certificate from Sara’s Garden Center in Brockport.