Chicago Gardeners: Mark Your Calendars!

Wild Ones is an organization that advocates for inclusion of native plants in American landscapes. It is not to be confused with the 1953 movie, The Wild One, starring Marlon Brando. Though few people know that Brando was an avid native plant gardener. UPDATE: Just kidding about that, I need to be more obvious when I make stuff up.

The Wild Ones garden tour will be by coach, not motorcycle.
The Wild Ones garden tour will be by coach, not motorcycle.

Anyway, the North Park Village Chapter of The Wild Ones is organizing their third “triennial” Garden Bus Tour, which will take place on August 1st. Participants will travel together by coach, visiting five private and four public gardens on the North Side of Chicago and near north suburbs.

The 2012 Wild Ones garden tour arrives at Garden in a City.
The 2012 Wild Ones garden tour arrives at Garden in a City.

One of the private gardens on the tour is my own. Actually, I’ve been included in all three of these tours, and it’s been a lot of fun.

The Wild Ones were an engaged and lively bunch.
The Wild Ones were an engaged and lively bunch.

The coach will leave from the North Park Village Nature Center (5801 N. Pulaski) at 9 am, where there will also be a picnic lunch (bring your own). The coach will return again to the Nature Center at 4:30 pm.

It was a little scary but also a lot of fun to show off our garden.
It was a little scary but also a lot of fun to show off our garden.

Tickets are a mere pittance at $10. To order, send a check to Rick McCallister, 6947 N. Oriole, Chicago, IL 60631, or email

“Show us some native plant gardens or there’s gonna be trouble.”

Hope to see you on August 1st!

For more information, go to the NPV Chapter website.

45 Comments on “Chicago Gardeners: Mark Your Calendars!

  1. I didn’t know that about Brando!! How cool is that! I look forward to meeting you and seeing your garden this summer Jason! My garden pal sue and I will be attending! Have a great week! Nicole

    • Very excited to get to meet you in person! I was kidding about Brando, by the way. If you read something that sounds kind of unlikely on this blog, I probably made it up.

  2. How very, very cool to show off your wonderful garden! I bet it gets a lot of great comments – fingers crossed for good weather on the day

  3. Ohhh!… How I wish this was closer to my neck of the woods in NH! Sounds like such a fun, learning event. I hope you get lots of visitors and can’t wait to see pictures!!!!

  4. Sounds like fun. Wish I didn’t live a 5hr drive from there.

  5. I like it! I hope you’ll have lots of photos of your native plants gardens after the tour.

  6. If I lived in the area, then I’d sign up quick as a wink. Looking forward to pictures.

  7. Oh, what fun! We have a chapter of Wild Ones here in Lexington, KY and they have a tour of certified monarch waystations on July 11, also at a cost of $10. That is a real bargain. Good for you for opening your garden for the third time for a worthy cause.

  8. Oh gosh….how exciting! But also a lot of pressure to have everything looking pristine! Good luck with it, I’ll look forward to hearing and seeing more!xxx

  9. Sounds like a great day – and I’m really looking forward to seeing your pictures. What fun to share your garden with other people (in the life, rather than just blogging). I was thinking about trying to organise a gardening club to visit each other’s gardens here (there is NOTHING along those lines). Would be good to look at wildflower sites as well, I now think after reading your post. The wildflowers are wonderful in France – especially the orchids – although possibly less colourful than many of your natives in the States.

    • I wonder why the French do not join garden clubs as the English and Americans do. I have no idea what French wildflowers are like (except for poppies), though I have visited a few French gardens.

      • The French in our area don’t join garden clubs, Jason, because they don’t make gardens in the same way as you or I would. It’s hard to buy anything that’s not for fruit or veggie growing round here. The European flora is very rich – UK more impoverished. I love seeing the meadows/verges here.

  10. I don’t know…maybe you should leave us with the challenge of sussing out the subtle jokes. Did you have The Wild Ones in stitches?

    • I wouldn’t say in stitches … one of them told me they liked the Marlon Brando picture. I grew up in a house where irony and sarcasm featured very prominently in everyday speech. As an adult I found that this way of talking sometimes complicated communication with those who were more straightforward.

  11. Glad you had the update, I believed you that Brando liked native gardening. Great you are on their tour. They will enjoy all your native plants. Brush up on all the plant names and uses, those folks know their stuff. We had Wild Ones here, but not they lost the chapter. In-fighting….

  12. Wish I could make it, sounds like a very fun day. Plus I’d love to see your garden in person. Unfortunately I’m out of town that week. But, you have reminded me to look up my local chapter of this interesting group.

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