A green wall restores its creator


Ed Tawyea built this green wall himself - it hosts about 200 plants, each placed in a synthetic felt pocket. It's irrigated throughout with water from a small pond and fertlized (mostly) by fish waste in the pond. It was not easy. It took 150 hours, cost about $1,200 and was an exercise in experimentation.

Next year will be simpler, for sure, although Ed's thinking he'll add a ribbon of color - purple, maybe - as contrast to the many shades of green.

The wall is 16 feet long and 7 feet high, covered with sedum, mini-hosta, philodendron, fern, coleus, mondo grass, hakone grass, impatiens (New Guinea), creeping jenny (yes, and it's perfect for this), bromeliad, lantana and ... basil. Basil is very happy on the wall. (Ed is a pesto guy).

Now semi-retired, Ed moved to Society Hill from Mount Airy, in search of an even more urban environment. As we sat in his beautiful, completely transformed garden, horse-drawn carriages clip-clopped by. There were the usual city sirens, motorcycles and buzz saws. The green wall seemed to soften the noise.

Ed says he sometimes sits out there by himself just staring at the wall. Relaxing? You bet.