Time for a garden party in Tracy

Garden tours, quilt shows on tap for Wednesday

Gardens in Tracy will be on display for the public during the annual Tracy Area Garden Party on Wednesday.

“It includes garden tours and quilt shows,” said Jesse James, whose own garden will be on the tour. “There are quilts displayed at every garden site.”

Participants are allowed to view any or all of the garden sites on the tour, but James highly encourages everyone to visit the Wheels Across the Prairie Museum Gardens in town: “They have a quilt there that goes back to the 1800s,” he said.

“It’s like being at an art show, these people (that made them) are so talented,” James says of the quilts that will be on display.

The quilts are all made by locals.

“There are six women here who made the quilts. They are known for their skills,” said James.

“There is something about touring a garden and there are colorful quilts there. It’s very pleasing,” he added of the dynamic that the quilts bring to the tour.

The tours will be open to the public from 2:3-8:30 p.m. on Wednesday. Tickets cost $15 and are available at the Breezy Barn on the day of the tours or in advance at Greenwood Nursery. For the tours, there are six different garden sites to visit, with about 70 quilts on display throughout the different locations.

During the day, there will be St. Mary’s pie a la mode available, free for anyone who purchased a ticket. The pie will be served at the Breezy Barn.

“St. Mary’s is known for their pie fundraiser so you get homemade pie and ice cream,” said James. “The Breezy Barn is a pretty incredible barn to see, too.”

James, who is among one of the those whose garden will be on the tour, is excited about sharing his work with others.

“Last year we had about 200 people who attended,” he said. “I’m really looking forward to being able to talk to people who appreciate gardening and be able to share my garden with them and learn from them.”

“I like to keep it fun, rather than a burden,” added James, describing his own garden. “I am always looking for something new, and I have quite a few unusual things in it, too. I like to scavage for interesting objects, so I have a lot of those in my garden.”

He describes it as having a lot of farm things and metal arches spread throughout it.

“A lot of things are blooming early because of the spring we had,” said James, saying that a lot of his flowers are in bloom already, which will be nice for the tours.

“You get to escape for a little while,” he says of the experience. “Being that close to Mother Nature is beautiful.”