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Topiary

Making It Grow Minute Extra logo

Team Making It Grow traveled to Charleston recently to the small garden behind St. John’s Reformed Episcopal Church. During a Spoleto outreach project many years ago, this garden showcasing two of national artists’ unique skills was installed. A master of iron work design and craftsmanship, Phillip Simmons, created unique and appropriate gates and wall openings. Topiary artist Pearl Fryar designed a small but exquisite example of his unique artistry. A committee of the Garden Club of Charleston has been tending this garden but recently took lessons in Fryar’s techniques from Mike Gibson to learn some of the specific techniques. The McKissick Museum at U S C got a grant to hire Mike Gibson, a self-described property artist, to work and learn from Fryar in his Bishopville garden, as that world-renowned topiary artist is aging and limited in his activities.

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Amanda McNulty is a Clemson University Extension Horticulture agent and the host of South Carolina ETV’s Making It Grow! gardening program. She studied horticulture at Clemson University as a non-traditional student. “I’m so fortunate that my early attempts at getting a degree got side tracked as I’m a lot better at getting dirty in the garden than practicing diplomacy!” McNulty also studied at South Carolina State University and earned a graduate degree in teaching there.