Home & Yard Blvd. Section
Minneapolis’s Tangletown Gardens has dedicated an entire page of its Web site to the inspiration that the Mother of Us All can provide: “As gardeners and visual beings, we sometimes become all too comfortable with the same plant choices we’ve made time and time again.”
Tangletown cofounders Dean Engelmann and Scott Endres, refer to themselves as “advocates of beauty.” That’s a position to which everyone might consider aspiring.
The verdant path that snakes around Tangletown takes any such aspirant into a floronic Tower of Babel, where wood and bloom, creepers and climbers, vie for attention and sunlight, cascading the seeker in a cacophony of color and texture and scent.
Even the building that houses the business is striking: It’s a retired, renovated Pure Oil station that somewhat resembles a fortress. Or a dream.
The marriage of natural beauty and artificial beauty is itself the perfect metaphor for Tangletown’s Annual Garden and Art Tour, which this year enjoys its fourth incarnation. As in years past, the event takes place the last Saturday of July: on July 26, 9 AM-4 PM. Because rain is every bit as important to a plant’s life as is sunshine, the tour will move forward under either condition.
Each of these tours has focused on the best gardens and the best artwork to be found within a chosen section of the Twin Towns. This year’s featured area is Tangletown’s literal and figurative backyard, the neighborhoods of South Minneapolis.
The tour is self-guided, meaning the aspirant won’t be fretted over by some Cecil B. DeMille wannabe, chop-chopping with crinkled timetables and flapping maps in tow. Browsing on the tour is highly encouraged—in fact, that’s its very function.
The gardens serve as exactly half of the tour’s focus. The other half, for those who’ve been too distracted by the daisies to pay close attention, is Art. Nature takes many forms on the tour, but so does art: paintings and photos, pottery and sculpture are displayed carefully within the toured gardens. All of the artwork is local, and all of it underlines Tangletown’s theme of inspiration.
Keeping with the plant motif, grapes that have been carefully killed and fermented by Solo Vino of St. Paul will be available. Garden appreciation is, after all, thirsty work. Back at the Tangletown Culture HQ, the art cone widens with live music, accessorized by appetizers and beverages.
Tickets for the tour are available directly from Tangletown Gardens at $20 in advance and $25 on the day of the event.
Figuratively and literally, this annual tour is where the gardens and art of our Twin Towns tangle.
Annual Garden and Art Tour
5353 Nicollet Ave., Mpls.