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The Piet Oudolf Meadow Garden is seen from overhead at the peak of its June bloom.

On June 16, the Delaware Botanic Gardens (DBG) hosted 150 members, guests and supporters at a Sip & Saunter event celebrating the Piet Oudolf Meadow Garden at peak summer bloom. With 70,000 native plants and grasses in the 2-acre Meadow Garden, summer is the best time to see this unique garden, according to Ray Sander, president of the DBG.

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Echinacea ‘Hula Dancer’ is among the flowers in the Meadow Garden that are currently in peak bloom.

“If you have been thinking of visiting the DBG, summer is the time to see the gardens at their blooming best,” he said.

DBG Head of Horticulture Stephen Pryce Lea said, “A delightful mid-June evening spent amongst flowers at DBG, from the swaying heads of coneflower; echinacea ‘Hula Dancer’ to the steely Blue Sea Holly; eryngium ‘Big Blue.’ Our evening guests enjoyed a sip, beneath beautiful clear blue sunlit skies while sauntering amongst the delicate blossoms and grasses of Piet Oudolf’s prairie meadow, reveling as the sun’s golden rays set on an enchanting evening with friends and honored guests of the gardens.”

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Eryngium ‘Big Blue’ is among the flowers in the Meadow Garden that are currently in peak bloom.

DBG Executive Director Sheryl Swed said, “This is a special time to visit the gardens. We were honored during our Sip & Saunter event to welcome some of our supporters who designed key garden features: Rodney Robinson and Allan Summers of RAS, who created the DBG Master Plan; Chris Bason, executive director of the Center for the Inland Bays (CIB) and his team, who partnered with DBG and Karen Steenhoudt on the Living Shoreline Project; and Scott Edmonston of SEA Studio Architects, who designed our restrooms and the Pennoni Pavilion.”

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The DBG and CIB team who designed and built the DBG Living Shoreline Project gather on observation deck. Pictured, from left, are: Olivia McDonald, Chris Bason, Carol Bason, Karen Steenhoudt, Marianne Walch, Stephen Pryce Lea, Doug Janiec, Bob Collins, Sam Cashdollar and Jeremy Cole.

The June celebration was made more festive by libations from presenting sponsor Dogfish Head Brewery, with food from Good Earth Market’s Sue Ryan and Nino Mancari, music from Eva Tooker of Coastal Keys and plein air art by John Schisler.

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The Good Earth Market crew serves up some select items in the Sip & Saunter Food Tent provided.

Director of Development Craig Sims said, “It was a wonderful way to say ‘thank you’ to our volunteers and Garden community, and to remind everyone that we all are thankful to have COVID-19, hopefully, behind us. We invite all to visit DBG during our special summer blooming season.”

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Plein air artist John Schisler plein paints during the Sip & Saunter event on June 16.

The gardens are open to the public Thursday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Guided tours are also available. Reservations are recommended: go to delawaregardens.org/hours-admission. The gardens are located at 30220 Piney Neck Road, Dagsboro. The mission of the Delaware Botanic Gardens is “to create a world-class, inspirational, educational, and sustainable public botanic garden in southern Delaware for the benefit and enjoyment of all.” For more information, go to www.delawaregardens.org.