Sensory Arts for Autism

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Photo courtesy of the Els Center of Excellence

April is Autism Awareness Month, and no one does more locally for the cause than professional golfer Ernie Els and his family.

This year, the Jupiter-based Els Center of Excellence is eagerly awaiting its new Sensory Arts Garden, which will provide a creative place that can be experienced through touch, sight, hearing, smell, taste and movement.

The focus of this year’s giving campaign, the project will feature special outdoor areas or “garden rooms,” each featuring different plants and textures. The area will be healing and therapeutic for individuals with autism and other sensory processing challenges, because they can interact with nature in their own way and at their own pace.

“Nature offers children and adults with autism spectrum disorder with wonderful opportunities for adventure, exploration and engagement,” says Dr. Marlene Sotelo, director of programs and operations for the Els for Autism Foundation. “When individuals with autism engage with nature, they develop not only a special interest in birds, animals or plants, but also opportunities to develop their social skills.”

To contribute or to learn more about the Sensory Arts Garden, the Els Center or the Els for Autism Foundation, visit the website.


pbbor-tree-bwPublished monthly, the Palm Beach Real Estate Guide showcases available Palm Beach real estate, from estates and historic homes to in-town flats and waterfront high-rises. Subscribe or contact us.

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Go Green

GreenMarket

Photos courtesy of VisitWPB

You simply cannot let another Saturday go by without a visit to the West Palm Beach GreenMarket.

Cooking Light magazine calls it the best in Florida. Now in its 22nd year, it was the area’s first and is surely the most extensive.

DoughnutsMore than 80 vendors offer local and organic produce, plants, herbs, exotic flowers, baked goods, coffees, teas, olive oils, spices, candy, meat, seafood, cheeses, and artisan housewares.

You can crunch a half-sour pickle, slurp up a messy Cuban sandwich, or grab yourself a “walkaround cone” of apple cider doughnuts (our guilty pleasure). We love to cherry-pick the freshest and most unusual produce and then go home and create our evening meal around it.

The GreenMarket runs from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. on Saturdays from October through April (this year’s last market is April 22). It’s held on the Waterfront Commons (Flagler Drive & Clematis), and parking is free at both the Banyan and Evernia garages. Coming by boat? You can dock nearby. And don’t leave the dog at home, because it’s pet-friendly.


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Flower Power

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Photos courtesy of Jeff Leatham

For its biennial flower show, the Garden Club of Palm Beach isn’t just bringing in a floral designer as its keynote speaker. The Garden Club of Palm Beach is bringing in the floral designer as its keynote speaker.

Jeff Leatham is the artistic director of the Four Seasons Hotel George V in Paris. In 2014, he was awarded the prestigious Chevalier de L’Order des Arts et Lettres, the equivalent of a knighthood for contributions to French culture. That’s an astonishing achievement for anyone, but particularly for an American.

Flower show 2017Leatham is the author of Flowers by Jeff Leatham, Flowers by Design, and Jeff Leathan: Visionary Floral Art and Design. He has partnered with Alexander Wang, Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga, Bulgari, Philip Treacy, Swarovski, Givenchy, Ellie Saab, Burberry, Tiffany & Co., Waterford, and Dom Perignon. His A-list clients include Tina Turner, Oprah Winfrey, Madonna, Kylie Minogue, The Kardashians and Celine Dion, the Dalai Lama, and President and Secretary of State Clinton.

Jeff Leatham is, in other words, a Very Big Deal.

You can hear his lecture at 1 p.m. on Saturday, April 8 in the Four Arts’ Gubelman Auditorium… if there are tickets left. Call (561) 655-7226 to find out.

The weekend-long flower show, this year titled “L’Orangerie,” runs from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. April 8 and noon-4 p.m. April 9. Hundreds of entrants will compete for awards in fresh or dried floral arrangement, botanical arts, and photography, among others. The show is open to the public and free of charge. (The wildly popular preview party is Friday night, but it’s by invitation only.)


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A Dog’s Life

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Photo courtesy of Mounts Botanical Garden

You love the Mounts. Surely, your best friend will, too.

Saturday, Feb. 26, will be the very first Dogs’ Day in the Garden at the Mounts Botanical Garden.

“This is the perfect opportunity for an entire family – dogs included – to visit the garden, take a walk on the winding paths, meet other pooch pals and heel for photo opportunities,” says Rochelle Wolberg, interim director of programs at Mounts.

Visitors will have the chance to learn about dog-related nonprofits, shop, enjoy dog-friendly vendors, and meet home-seeking canines from a local dog rescue organization. There will be water and treats for the canine guests.

The event will run from 10 a.m.-3 p.m.; it’s free for members and only $5 for non-members. Mounts Botanical Garden is at 531 North Military Trail in West Palm Beach. Visit the website for more information, or to download a complete list of guidelines about bringing dogs to the garden.


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Palm Beach Chic

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Photos reprinted with permission.

Palm Beach homes, Palm Beach gardens and Palm Beach life, written by a Palm Beach girl – someone with stories to share and the kind of access you only get when you’re a lifelong friend.

palm-beach-chic-coverThe book is Palm Beach Chic (The Vendome Press, 312 pages, $75), a gorgeous volume that’s witty, understated and urbane – much like Palm Beach itself.

Author Jennifer Ash Rudick moved to the island when she was 12, and gives us the insider-est possible perspective on the homes, their histories and their occupants. The book (graced with jaw-dropping photographs by Jessica Klewicki Glynn) celebrates the architects, interior designers and garden designers who’ve made each home perfect.

“Since its early days,” Rudick notes, “Palm Beach has been synonymous with awe-inspiring structures.” Awe-inspiring, yes, and anything but cookie-cutter. You think you know what a Palm Beach mansion looks like? Not possible. Whether a Regency estate, a Mid-Century Modern apartment, or a “surf shack” on Billionaire’s Row, the only standard is excellence.

Inside the description of each house is the description of the way life is lived in each house: “Days are spent en famille,” Rudick writes in the chapter about the Gumdrop House. “The mornings begin on the eastern loggia with coffee… tennis is at 11:30, followed by a buffet lunch on the western loggia at 1:30.” So very civilized.

And then there are the laugh-out-loud stories. Chronicling the massive renovation at Casa Amado: “A rustling in the entry hall turned out to be a fox the size of a German shepherd.” Moving into a vintage second-floor Worth Avenue flat: “Their belongings had to be hoisted through a window by crane. ‘We’re never leaving. We can’t!’ says the wife.”

Interior fabrics and furnishings are meticulously sourced. And the art… oh, the art.

These homes are showplaces, every one, without a hint of conspicuous consumption. Each chapter is a vignette in one grand Palm Beach story. In the end, it all comes down to one thing: Taste. Exquisite taste.


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Martha’s Garden

martha-stewartMartha’s coming to town.

Martha Stewart, guru of garden and kitchen and all things home. On Thursday, Feb. 23, she’ll speak on “Great Ideas for the Garden” as a guest of the Garden Club of Palm Beach.

You’ll need to act quickly if you want to be in the audience. Telephone reservations open tomorrow (Wednesday, Jan. 11) promptly at 10 a.m., and organizers expect tickets will get snapped up quicker than you can say Phalaenopsis Cattleya.

Call (561) 655-7226 to reserve for you and your closest gardening buddy, because you’ll be limited to two tickets.

The event will be held in the Four Arts’ Walter S. Gubelmann Auditorium. Learn more on the Garden Club website.


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The Wall on Worth

img_2198What do you do when you want to provide a chic public garden near some of the toniest, richest, and most thoroughly developed commercial real estate in the world?

You go up, of course.

The vertical garden (on the west facade of Saks Fifth Avenue) is a quarter-million-dollar installation that’s part of the Worth Avenue revitalization project. Nearly 11,000 plants were incorporated into the Living Wall – mondo grass; xanadu philodendron; Asiatic jasmine; silver sawtooth palmetto; altermanthera; muehlenbeckia axillaris; philodendron “Burle Marx;” dusty miller; zebrina pendula; coontie; and zoysia grass.

It sure looks to us like every single one of those plants is thriving. We snapped this photo not long ago, when we were on our way to the Esplanade for a cup of coffee. Beautiful, yes?

See more photos and read more about the wall here.


pbbor-tree-bwPublished monthly, the Palm Beach Real Estate Guide showcases available Palm Beach real estate, from estates and historic homes to in-town flats and waterfront high-rises. Subscribe or contact us.

 

Have You Stopped by the Mounts Lately?

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Garden of Well-Being

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Butterfly Garden

 

It’s the end of summer. Season hasn’t started, and we’re all looking for a diversion.

Mounts Botanical Garden (559 N. Military Trail, West Palm Beach) has plenty of them to take us all the way through fall. Stop by for a refreshing stroll through the grounds, or make plans to attend one of the many programs. Read on:

  • Making a Garden Trough: The Hypertufa Process (9 .m.-noon on Thursday, Aug. 25; $30 for members and $35 for non-members; GardenPavilion). Trough containers are all the rage. These functional planters resemble old stone but are lighter in weight. They’re also durable and perfect for miniature gardens or small plants. In this workshop, you’ll watch a Master Gardener Ted Johnson demonstrate how to create a hypertufa container. We’ll supply tips on potting mixes and planting. Wear old clothes and bring clear plastic safety glasses and snug, waterproof dishwashing gloves. Class limit is 15.
  • Everything Orchids: A Shady Affair Plant Sale (9 a.m.-4 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 10 and 9 a.m.-3 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 11; free for members and $10 for non-members). Mounts’ Everything Orchids weekend event is made for the shade. This plant sale offers a great opportunity to acquire orchids and shade-loving plants. Fun and informative lectures will be offered on topics such as Basic Orchid Care, Shade Loving Plants and Fragrance Plants. The area’s premier plant vendors will be selling begonias, bromeliads, orchids, ferns, hoyas, aroids and more. Magnificent tabletop arrangements will be offered in a silent auction to benefit Mounts Botanical Garden.
  • Members Only Off-The-Road Tour (Friday, October 21; $105 per person): Travel to the Edison & Ford Winter Estates in Fort Myers. This 20-acre tour includes the Edison main, guest and caretaker’s house, the Ford Estate and the Edison Botanic Research Lab and historic gardens. The tour also includes a river excursion that will take passengers up the Caloosahatchee River to the historic railroad bridge, with great views of the island rookery. Included in the price of the tour is a riverfront lunch with a historian, and motorcoach transportation to and from Mounts Botanical Gardens. Space is limited to 48 and is first come; first served. Not a member? You can join today.

The Mounts offers a number of ongoing events, including private garden tours and these two new community partnerships:

  • Book Discussion Series: An opportunity for book and garden enthusiasts to experience exciting fiction and nonfiction titles related to all aspects of gardening and horticulture. Each month on the second Tuesday night, we’ll discuss a different title while we take in the beautiful grounds of the Garden. This series is a partnership with the Palm Beach County Library System. To register and obtain a copy of the titles, please call 561-233-1730.
  • Art in the Garden Series: This community collaboration will feature Armory Art Center’s expert instructors teaching various art disciplines in the calm and serene setting of the Mounts garden. For a list of the upcoming classes, visit the events calendar or call 561-233-1730.

Really, you should go. It’s a treasure.


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Ponds in Bloom: Have You Seen the McKee Waterlilies?

classesIt’s Florida, and there’s always something blooming. Every so often, there’s an extra-special bloom that’s worth a day trip. This is one of those times.

This Sunday, June 12, McKee Botanical Garden in Vero Beach will host its 12th Annual Waterlily Celebration. The event kicks off the waterlily blooming season, which continues throughout the summer and is one of the garden’s most-anticipation attractions.

McKee’s waterlily collection is the largest in Florida, with nearly 350 individual plants representing 100 varieties. The garden will open early this Sunday, at 8:30 a.m., presenting a rare opportunity to view night-blooming specimens before they retreat.

If you’re a gardener yourself, you’ll learn how to distinguish hardy species from tropicals, and see demonstrations on techniques for repotting the lilies. The garden plans a special plant sale, and you can participate in the annual waterlily photo contest.

The McKee Botanical Garden is located at 350 U.S. Highway 1, Vero Beach. For more information, visit the website or call (772) 794-0601.


pbbor-tree-bwPublished monthly, the Palm Beach Real Estate Guide showcases available Palm Beach real estate, from estates and historic homes to in-town flats and waterfront high-rises. Subscribe or contact us.