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Troy Garden Club hosts 45th annual garden walk

A quote from British garden writer Penelope Hobhouse inspired the theme of this year's Troy Garden Walk, which returns Wednesday: "Gardens are the result of a collaboration between art and nature." The "Between Art and Nature" garden walk, organized by the Troy Garden Club and now in its 45th year, runs from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5-8:30 p.m. It will feature five venues and seven gardens in both Troy and Bloomfield Hills. Pictured is one of the gardens on this year's walk. Tickets are $10 in advance or $15 the day of the tour, available at the Troy Historic Village, 60 West Wattles Road. The garden club also will be offering a Midsummer Arts & Crafts Boutique from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the historic village with a plant sale, Doris' Fabulous Finds Sale and a student art exhibit. Proceeds from the garden walk fund grants for the educational efforts of more than 30 local, regional, state and national horticulture organizations plus scholarships to college students studying horticulture. For information, including where to purchase advance tickets, go to www.TroyGardenClubMI.com

Pond tour returns July 20, features 5 ponds

Thinking about installing a small koi pond in your backyard and need inspiration? Consider checking out the Michigan Koi & Pond Club's annual pond tour. The 21st annual Pond & Water Garden Tour runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. July 20th and will feature five ponds. The tour begins at the Grass Roots Nursery, 24765 Bell Road in New Boston. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for kids. Pond owners also will be on hand to give tips and advice. 

Win a 190-square-foot tiny house in Monday raffle

Do you dream of owning your tiny home but it's not in the budget anytime soon (or ever)? Cass Community Social Services in Detroit is giving you another option: you can win one. On Monday, Cass -- the organization behind Cass Tiny Homes, the largest development of tiny homes in Michigan for formerly homeless residents and low-income seniors and students -- will raffle off a 190-square-foot tiny home manufactured by Tumbleweed Tiny House Company. The house, which is less than 5 years old and was donated to Cass by a woman in Nebraska, has a kitchen with full-size appliances, gas-powered stove, bathroom with a shower, loft with room for a queen-size bed and a small living room area. Tickets are $50 and can be purchased until 10 a.m. Monday. The house is on a trailer so it can easily be moved from one location to another. Proceeds from the raffle will go toward building more Cass Tiny Homes. To purchase a ticket, call (313) 883-2277 ext. 203.

Mid-July brings lavender -- and festivals!

It's a summer tradition for  thousands: the Michigan Lavender Festival. In mid-July, it returns to southeast Michigan, with a slightly new name, the Original Michigan Lavender Festival and a new location, the Eastern Michigan Fairgrounds. This year's festival, which runs from July 11-13, will include wellness seminars, lavender workshops, music, and shuttle rides to nearby Indigo Lavender Farm in Imlay City to pick a bundle of lavender. There will also be an artisans market with more than 175 artists. The festival, now in its 17th year, comes at the same time at least two other lavender fests are planned, the Blake's Lavender Festival, July 12-14, at Blake's Orchard in Armada (the previous location of the lavender festival) and another, the 2019 Lavender Harvest Festival, July 13, in Milan, Michigan. To learn more about the Original Michigan Lavender Festival, go to michiganlavenderfestival.net.

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