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Tour Best Private Gardens In Philadelphia Area

By Phran Novelli

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - On Saturday & Sunday, June 6 & 7th from 10am-4pm, Garden Conservancy Open Days will let you see some of the best private gardens around; this year, featuring graduates of the Barnes Foundation's Arboretum School.

The twelve-acre property of the Barnes Arboretum on Latches Lane in Merion - where Laura Barnes collected her favorite plants specifically for teaching - is one stop on this tour. There, you'll wander the formal gardens and rolling hills filled with 3,000 unique shrubs and trees (30 state champions!), along with a rose garden, peonies, hostas and fern collections.

Barnes' alumni properties include a terraced garden developed over 45 years from what began as a barren hillside. And another garden where a Barnes graduate has nurtured small classroom cuttings she got while a student at the Arboretum School into the mature trees and shrubs you see today. Those are just two of the many gardens on the tour.

It's just $7 per garden or you can buy a discount pass online. Get more details at

If you'd like to volunteer for just one two-hour shift at one garden you'll get free access to all the gardens on both of the Open Days.

Contact Diane Newbury at to sign up to volunteer.

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