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Bringing Eclectic to Nature

Gale Curcio
By Gale Curcio
Posted on May 25,2011
Filed Under News , Community,
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Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Eclectic Nature’s newest ‘employee’ welcomes guests to the Spring Open House.
Photo by Gale Curcio
Eclectic Nature’s newest ‘employee’ welcomes guests to the Spring Open House.

ALEXANDRIA, VA. - They are whimsical. They are fun. They are clever and they're great for young and old alike.

Fairy gardens are fast becoming a "hot" new hobby.
 
These miniature gardens complete with adorable miniature garden furniture, accessories and plants are available for sale at Eclectic Nature Gift and Gardens in the Del Ray section of Alexandria.

Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />One of the fairy gardens at Eclectic Nature.
Photo by Gale Curcio
One of the fairy gardens at Eclectic Nature.

Owner Christy Beal said they are “ideal for rookie gardeners, those with limited space and/or time, or those just looking for a fun and rewarding project. It’s a great creative outlet. It’s another level of gardening on a small scale.”

Beal, who started purchasing these kits last year, said that they are coming out with more and more accessories.

“I love the miniature furniture,” she said.

Earlier this month, Beal showed people how to assemble these gardens during a free workshop that was held at the gardening center.

Beal also held another workshop on container gardening.

“Container gardening has always been huge,” Beal said. “It can be done in a smaller space and is much easier to manage. You can control the environment by moving the containers around.”

Beal said that the possibilities are unlimited and that the pottery is now as fun as the plants. She sells pottery that is frost proof so that it can be left out during the winter.

“The pots are as colorful as the flowers,” she said.

Fairy gardens and container gardens are just two of the many items sold at Eclectic Nature.
 
Beal started the garden center several years ago and defines “eclectic” as “choosing what appears to be the best from diverse sources.”

This word well describes the engaging and inspiring space at Eclectic Nature Gift and Garden Center.
 

Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />Eclectic Nature is filled with flowers of all kinds.<br />
Photo by Gale Curcio
Eclectic Nature is filled with flowers of all kinds.

The large colorful murals painted by a friend of the owner are both a neighborhood landmark and a refreshing backdrop to the plant displays.
 
The unusual corbelled design of the front fountain creates a fascinating interplay of cascading water and light.

Eclectic Nature offers year-round beauty for your home, indoors and out. The shop and garden center is located at 1503 Mount Vernon Avenue in the heart of Del Ray.

Artfully arranged within the shop’s cozy interior is an appealing mix of traditional and contemporary furnishings, including lamps, pillows, frames, mirrors, chandeliers and various small furniture pieces.
 
Wandering from room to room, you’ll find tableware, bathroom accessories, items for baby’s nursery and a smattering of wearable things for women that range from downright pretty to frankly funky.

Handbags are a specialty, and works by local artists adorn walls faux painted in luscious colors. Among the most interesting items are restored one-of-a-kind pieces refurbished with new paint and fresh, witty fabrics.

The garden center adjacent to the Gift Shop is stocked with perennials, annuals, herbs and ready-planted containers as well as mulch, soils, and organic fertilizers. 

Photo by Gale Curcio<br /> <br />A variety of colorful pots are available for container gardening.<br />
Photo by Gale Curcio
A variety of colorful pots are available for
container gardening.

Customers in search of statuary and other garden ornaments will find them tucked among the outdoor furniture, bird feeders, chimes, gloves, sun catchers and seasonal items such as wreaths, pumpkins and Christmas trees.


In 2004, Eclectic Nature won an award from the City of Alexandria for outstanding achievement in making the city more beautiful.

Eclectic Nature offers complete landscaping. They also offer seminars, workshops, and space rental for special events.
 
"Our goal is to offer unique, educational and fun experiences," Beal said.

Eclectic Nature Is located At 1503 Mount Vernon Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22301. Call 703-837-0500 or visit www.engiftandgarden.com.



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