Wilmington, DE Real Estate News

By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
 I began at noon today to walk the trails at Winterthur Museum and Gardens. The Museum and all the other buildings are closed, so trekkers needed to turn their attention to the great outdoors today.  I started out on a shady path leading up a hill.    Not sure I ever took note before of something that looked like wild begonias coating the forest floor,  but there they were, by the score.   Rounding the bend to see the field where the Temple folly sits, it is now surrounded by a field of Goldenrod, with a path carved through the field for access (and looking like a toy in the distance). Walking through the field, I  could hear the buzzing of insects, but the milkweed pods sat untouched. Then I spotted some orange milkweed bugs on one of the pods. The milkweed in my garden did not do well...
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
I warn you, don't get TOO excited about this on the spot report.  I was near the Wilmington Riverfront this morning,  so I thought, "Why not see how close you can get to where Joe Biden is speaking tonight?"  The answer: They sure have a lot of those black mesh fences.  I parked north of the Chase Center by one of the riverfront restaurants and walked down, seeing they were stopping cars. I guess if I had a Planet Fitness pass (which is facing the Chase Center), they would have let me drive through.  The Wilmington police posted along the route mostly said "Hi!" or waved when I waved at them. I got past the 2 hotels on the Riverwalk, but when it came to the Westin, which is connected to the Chase Center, lots of Jersey barriers, more black fences, and guards.  I spoke to the guard in th...
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
It seems I have been laboring under a misapprehension. When I saw a praying mantis, I thought, "How nice--they are eating bugs."Backing up--I have had a mealy bug problem with my Gerbera daisy plant.  The flowers are shriveling up and there are white bugs all over. I don't like to use insecticides, but I found an old spray can in the garage and went out to the patio where the Gerber sits on the wall. What to my wandering eyes should appear but a praying mantis, perched on a flower. "Great--he's going to eat the bugs," I thought.  So I went inside and Googled mantises. (Now this gets gross)  Those buggers kill hummingbirds, sometimes sucking their brains out. And my Gerbera is next to a honeysuckle loved by hummingbirds.  Looks like I have to move the darn plant now.  Sigh.
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
In the spring, I had all the plants lined up for the pots on my patio. I was especially excited to place a colorful Caladium in a pot with a dark red Ipomeum (Sweet Potato Plant.) All was good for a while, then the Caladium began to wilt and appeared to pass to another plane.  But then, a few weeks ago, what should rear its brassy head, but the Caladium. Looking bold and beautiful, it began to rise out of its earth-bound plot.  I could not believe what I saw.  Well, I could believe it, because plants are known to do their own thing and in their own time.  Like a lot of people.  It's all good.
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
I must admit, this latest effort to save my tomatoes did not cost anything. I already had this netting in the garage from some long-forgotten project.So I wound the netting around the two tomato cages and tied them to the cages with some wire. Who knows what the varmints will try next. Someone suggested that it could be a groundhog. I can't say I have seen any around here, but I did see a mole or vole the other day. Another suggestion was marigolds around the veggies. Tried that years ago and found the local slugs love marigolds. And something has been snapping off my green beans. Wonder if I should cover them with a layer of netting. Tomorrow is another day. At least my flowers don't seem to be someone's dinner.
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Today was the Presidential Primary in Delaware.  I was going to vote absentee, but they sent the ballot so long ago, that it got misplaced. So I had to go down to Brandywine H.S. and place a vote in person. I was impressed at the number of both volunteers and citizen voters. 3 cheers for all of you!And then I came home to face a problem on the home front. A few days ago I took a picture of a nice GREEN tomato in my garden. Then I found that it was completely gone 2 days later. Not still there with a bite taken out. GONE!  Must have been a fairly large squirrel? rabbit? something!So I looked at another green tomato, not quite as large as the first one. How to protect it?  First I wound a piece of binder wire from a bunch of broccoli. No, still not enough. Then I wrapped it in plastic wra...
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Actually, this is not much of a report, since it is so warm outside. I chose to stay inside and avoid the heat and occasional drizzle today and send this remotely from hiding.Luckily, the garden is doing fine on its own.  A new variety of pepper looks great--Italian Frying pepper. And the Better Boy tomatoes are still very green. But the bush beans have already provided a tiny harvest and look like there are plenty of blossoms waiting to become beans.  And the perennial lily is trying to outshine everyone.
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Mt. Cuba Center outside of Wilmington, Delaware has recently re-opened to the public. A friend who volunteers in the garden there invited us to visit the grounds the other day.  And yes, this is another DuPont family legacy (Lammot duPont Copeland was President of the DuPont Company), although the house is not an historic mansion, but a Colonial Revival home built in 1935. One of the most interesting areas is around the pond, which contains several varieties of pitcher plants.  The formal gardens were designed by Thomas Sears, and then in the 1950's, Marian Coffin refined the design.  By 1983, the decision was made to concentrate on wildflowers and plants of the Appalachian Piedmont, resulting in the sometimes jam-packed variety of plants seen today.  One of my favorite wildflowers is t...
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
While looking out my back window the other day, I saw what could be considered a fortuitous sign.  There were, at one point, five goldfinches around the poppies that had finished blooming a couple of weeks before.  Watching what one of them was doing, I saw him pecking at the seed heads. Wait a minute--I thought, poppyseeds?  This old Chicagoan of Polish descent felt a sudden kinship with this bird.  I was brought up on poppyseed streudel!  Are these birds Polish?  So I (of course) looked it up on Wikipedia, and found "A goldfinch in our lives is usually a sign of good luck and fortunate opportunities coming our way. It could be an announcement of prosperity and abundance ...They are a reminder to enjoy life more and be happy for the fact we have a life."But I already know how lucky I a...
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
I always loved blue and white and yes, I am a fan of Delftware, the tin glazed earthenware which the Dutch developed in the 15th century to satisfy the market for rare Chinese porcelains. So it is only fitting that when I noticed that my blue hydrangeas were blooming, that I brought some inside and put them in a Delftware vase, along with some spiderworts.  I did this in spite of the fact that the spiderworts are really getting on my nerves. The darn things spread their seeds all over the place and I find they are crowding out many other plants in my garden. I have been either pulling them out or snapping off their tall stems daily. But that's another story.  Enjoy the blue and white! 
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Today was a big day for members of Winterthur Museum and Gardens. A friend and I took advantage of a new reservation system and printed out passes to put on the windshield of our car.We had the 10 a.m. to noon slot this morning. It had been a couple of months since I had been to Winterthur, but had been following their Facebook page and looking at pictures and videos of all we were missing. The azaleas were almost all finished blooming, but a few late varieties were still in flower.The peonies were no longer all at their peak, but many beautiful specimens were still blooming.  The woody areas with their vibernums, ferns, evergreens and tall cypress trees were still providing cool shade.  And my favorite place, the quarry garden, had a fine collection of primroses arrayed on their rocky ...
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
It's always nice to see how the gardeners are doing at the plots in Bellevue State Park, and yesterday was a particularly nice day to walk through the woods and meadows on the way to see how these "worker bees" are doing.  In the woods, I found this overturned tree displaying what is probably the reason the wind knocked this tree over.  And, since it had rained for the last couple of days, the woods appeared in duplicate in a puddle.  Arriving at the around 300 garden plots that Bellevue State Park rents out, I found one man tending to his well-kept plot. He said he brings in new soil each year, and that it has been so windy that this year's flags that decorate his fencing had already begun to tatter. Being a fan of flamingos, I complimented him on his pink beauty!  This gentleman said ...
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Between my plant buying at garden centers and a masks for plants trade with a horticulturally inclined friend, I have been busy putting in new plants and potting others.  Luckily, they all seem to be getting along with each other and the current garden occupants. (clockwise starting from top left: Clematis Vivienne, Knockout rose, Columbine or Acquilegia, Bluestar Ansonia, Dahlias, Yellow Twig Dogwood, Petunia and Golden Leaved Pineapple Sage.)            
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Being that Sunday was Mother's Day, I thought the parks and gardens in Wilmington would be full of people, which turned out to be untrue for 2 out of 3 that I visited. The one thing they all had in common was ROCKS.  And also, 2 out of 3 also had flowers. Gibraltar gardens had Bluebells in bloom, taking the place of all the tulips I saw there a couple of weeks ago. And of course, there was the very large Rock of Gibraltar.   Was this how the estate got its name? Never thought of it before! Wilmington's "Class A Affiliate" baseball team of Kansas City is called the Blue Rocks. I once took a tour of rock sites around town and was told that the land under the city is igneous rock, formed when the area was islands of volcanos, sort of like Hawaii is today. So dig most anywhere around here, ...
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Today is overcast with occasional drizzles.So let's see what is blooming in the garden.  Hmmm. I'm seeing a dark undercurrent here.IrisTulipsLilacsCherry laurel
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
The Goodstay Gardens are one of Wilmington's  lesser known public gardens, located  on the University of Delaware Wilmington Campus. Ellen du Pont and her husband, Robert Wheelwright (who was a landscape architect) restored the mid 17th century property in the early 1920s. The garden was originally a vegetable site, and the Wheelwrights transitioned it into the stunning iris, rose and peony paradise that it is today.I went there today hoping to see the irises in bloom, since they are blooming in my Wilmington garden. But it seems the climate gnomes have this area tagged as "tulips featured, irises and peonies not yet ready." Fine with me--the tulips are spectacular, with some of them having blooms as large as peony blossoms. And in the center of the knot garden, the sundial was keeping ...
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
After lunch today seemed a good time to do a few garden chores, so I took my seed packets, garden gloves, and trowel into the patio. Let me recount the damages:1. A squirrel had gone crazy in a flower pot on my table and scattered the just starting to grow tiny flowers all over the place.2. While I was cleaning up the scattered dirt, a strange buzzing sound was in the air. I looked up and a few feet over, and a giant swarm of bees was headed my way--maybe 12 cubic feet in size. No pictures of this, because I swiftly abandoned my tools and moved towards my back door. The swarm moved in the same direction, loudly swirling toward me. I moved inside the house. Noisy buggers! (I found this picture  of an attack by bees earlier today-so don't tell me they won't hurt you.)3. I watched through ...
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
It may be overcast today, but this fragrant bouquet will take you away to the far away garden of your dreams.The iris have just started to open their blowsy blooms right next to the fragrant lilac bush, both vying for my attention. Nearby, the lillies of the valley are just starting to open, their strong frangrance just starting to send out tentacles of fragrance which will soon overcome their neighbors, just as the lilacs start to fade away. As I cocoon inside my home, this gift of nature's bounty makes its fragrant presence known.
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
We had a whole lot of rain yesterday, but luckily for my neighborhood, it just meant a few branches down, the usual soggy ground at the bottom of the hill, and a gushing Shellpot Creek (a name left behind by early Swedish settlers) at the bottom of the hill.  Today I decided to do some weeding and pruning, and heard a slithering noise (yes, you can hear slithering if it's through dead leaves).  I haven't seen a snake for a couple of years, but if they are hiding, they probably have been there the whole time. No problem.   Some good news is that the tree people who have been telling me they would be here in 3 weeks since before Christmas, say they will be here tomorrow.  I'll believe that when I see them. I have a big oak in the back yard (which the squirrels love) and a red maple in the...
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By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Every day, I check on what is in bloom in my garden and today I also checked to see if any branches were down after a hard rain storm last night.Luckily, there didn't seem to be any damage (except for the tulip blooms bitten off by an over-active squirrel).Today's bouquet contains daffodils, tulips, hosta, and hellebores.  
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