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Horticultural Society’s 2nd Annual ‘Pop-Up Garden’ Ready To Go Fallow

(PHS' 2012 pop-up garden was placed in a vacant lot at the northwest corner of Rittenhouse Square.  Credit: Pat Loeb)

(PHS’ 2012 pop-up garden was placed in a vacant lot at the northwest corner of Rittenhouse Square. Credit: Pat Loeb)

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By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS) today shut down this year’s “pop-up garden.”

The garden, near 19th and Walnut Streets, was intended to be temporary but the idea behind it is becoming permanent.

PHS is well known for the annual Philadelphia Flower Show, but president Drew Becker says he wanted to call attention to the revitalizing effects of its vacant land program, in which it cleans up and beautifies neighborhood eyesores.

So, last year, they beautified a lot right in the heart of center city, at 20th and Market Streets (see related story).

“It’s these places that people walk by, have walked by for years, and say, ‘Why doesn’t anything happen here?’  Well, something happened here.  It sort of re-energizes the site,” says Becker.

But he had no idea how popular the project would be.

“We didn’t have a grand plan to continue to do them,” he notes.  “However, that one was so successful, we have decided this is going to be one of the mainstays of PHS.”

This year’s pop-up garden attracted nearly 7,000 visitors before closing.

Becker says he already has a site in mind for next year.

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