Beacon Hill resident Miguel Rosales was recognized in Mayor Martin Walsh’s annual Garden Contest for the third consecutive year during a virtual ceremony on Tuesday, Aug. 25.
“The hidden gardens of Beacon Hill are unique in the City of Boston because of their enclosed nature,” said Rosales, who received second place in the Shade Garden category and was the only winner from the neighborhood in any category in this year’s 24th annual Mayor’s Garden Contest. “They have evolved and thrived since the 1920s when what were previously service areas in the back of historic townhouses started to be converted into urban gardens.”
Rosales’ garden boasts a 120-foot tall Sugar Maple, which is believed to be the only of its kind in the neighborhood. The tree has created a unique micro-environment in which only certain kinds of shade-loving plants can grow, Rosales said, and plants that have flourished in the walled-garden include Native Ferns, English and Algerian Ivy, varieties of Japanese Aralias, Boxwoods and medium-sized Japanese Maples.
Rosales received first and second place awards in the Shade Garden category last year and in 2018, respectively, in the contest, which according to the city, “recognizes gardeners who have landscaped, planted flowers, trees, shrubs, and vegetables, and in the process, helped beautify Boston’s neighborhoods.”
Ryan Woods, the commissioner of the city’s Parks and Recreation Department who presided over the virtual awards ceremony with Mayor Walsh, wrote in an email: “Miguel Rosales has been an active gardener in Beacon Hill for many years. In addition to his own private garden, he helps maintain and care for several gardens in public space for residents to enjoy. We congratulate Miguel and thank him for all his volunteer efforts to help Boston bloom.”
As a third-time winner, Rosales will be eligible to serve as a contest judge beginning next year after his official induction into the Hall of Fame.
“Urban gardening improves and enhances neighborhoods to the benefit of all,” said Rosales, “and I am very proud to represent Beacon Hill in the citywide contest as a longtime resident and as a member of the Beacon Hill Garden Club.”
A Story Map featuring photos of Mayor Martin Walsh’s Garden Contest winners and their gardens is available at www.boston.gov/GardenContest.