WarrenJuly 6, 2012
Nominations sought for Residential Recognition Awards program
By Brian Louwers
C & G Staff Writer
WARREN — Last summer, a friendly neighbor nominated Rick and Deena Lundine’s beautiful yard on Cunningham, south of Toepfer, for a Residential Recognition Award.
That was before the couple built their backyard ponds and a connecting stream, and added a slew of stunning new perennials to their landscape tapestry.
Who knows what kind of flowering gems await program chairperson Carol Peterson this year, as she combs Warren neighborhoods examining properties nominated for the awards offered through the Warren Beautification Commission?
Peterson said she’s interested in perusing pretty plots, tidy yards, creative landscapes and gorgeous gardens, the maintainers of which could garner a plaque to display on the property and an invitation to a celebratory dinner.
“The dinners are fantastic, and they’re lots of fun,” said Deena Lundine. Her husband, Rick, added he enjoyed the opportunity to share tips with other award recipients.
The Lundine backyard was a colorful canvas of perennials and annuals when Peterson visited last year.
Rick Lundine said he put the ponds in when the weather broke this spring, and a rocky stream separating the two pools now whispers gently as it flows among the yard’s relaxing confines.
The scene includes perennial beds that draw bees and butterflies, a flourishing vegetable garden, and a swing under a wooden canopy bearing kiwi vine.
That’s right: kiwi vine.
“The focal point is the flowers. I love flowers,” Rick Lundine said. “It’s our little hideaway, and the neighbors like it, too.”
Across town, resident Charles Alaimo received an award last year for his Victorian cottage on Burg, at 11 Mile Road and west of Hoover.
Alaimo said he rented the home when he got out of the military more than 30 years ago and later bought it as an investment property.
He ended up calling the house home, and today it adds a curious, colorful and well-kept splash to the south side of the I-696 service drive.
“It used to be all annuals, years ago,” Alaimo said of his plants, remembering the year he put in 115 flats of flowers — about 5,000 annuals. “That was spectacular. You get the color with the annuals, but it’s the time, and it’s the water.”
Alaimo’s yard now boasts a mix of annuals — including marigolds, Warren’s city flower — and perennials, bordered by an array of hostas.
At home on his award-winning property, Alaimo said the constant drone of freeway traffic never bothers him. But he remembers the day the trench that became I-696 came alive.
“One morning I woke up, and all of a sudden I heard the traffic,” Alaimo said. “I knew it was coming.”
Peterson said a group of 20 winners would be selected from properties nominated this summer to receive Residential Recognition Awards through the Warren Beautification Commission. Nominations can be submitted through Aug. 15.
To nominate a neighbor’s yard or even your own, contact Peterson directly at (586) 575-9272.
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