We had a great group of volunteers from Oakhill Christian School (seen above and below) come in this morning to help purge annuals from a couple of locations out in the gardens. Students from this school have come very spring and fall for the past four years and we appreciate their impressive work ethic. These 17 students, along with their teacher Kath, did a great job clearing out the formal annual sections (see directly below) and the lime wall planting (second photo down). This amounted to lots of debris for the compost pile! We're clearing these areas first as we have lights to put up in these locations next week for the Holiday Lights Show (HLS). The students did a very thorough job and a big thank you to Janice who helped me coordinate our youthful volunteers and all the details with tools, carts, etc.
We also had many of our "regulars" here today for volunteer efforts out in the gardens. Both Marleen (above) and Magda (directly below) worked in their garden area with a focus on removals, weeding and bulb planting. These ladies always do a great job and their garden space (south of the reception garden) is one of our best examples of a mixed border out in the gardens. Both Terri (second photo down) and Kay (third photo down) spent the entire morning tidying up the sunken garden. This garden still looks very colorful and will host two weddings tomorrow. The ladies cut back anything unsightly, removed spent annuals, collected leaves and basically tidied the garden up nicely. I saw them bring back many loads of debris from that garden space. Bill O. will touch it up in the morning but regardless, it will look sharp for the ceremonies. Betty H. (fourth photo down) continued clearing her areas and created some significant debris as well. Ron K. spent a couple of hours in the woodland walk garden cutting back perennials and collecting other debris. He'll have plenty of leaves to collect too over the coming weeks. Dr. Gredler was in for his Friday mowing rounds and Maury ran some errands for us as well (more supplies!). We also saw Kris K., Mary W., Chuck S. and many others today.
We had a small Friday crew but were able to get a lot of work accomplished. After Janice and I spent the morning with our teenage volunteers, Janice went on to do the cutting display, general gardening and desk work. I had some other tasks to finish including plenty of desk work as well. Terry spent some significant time putting up more lights for the HLS in multiple locations. He and John have been focusing on icicle lights on structures, bridges, etc. We'll do more decorating of actual trees and shrubs next week and the displays will go out soon too. Terry also push mowed, tidied the sunken garden and finished up some other tasks. Pat repaired lights, push mowed and spent time removing plants near the gazebo garden. Below are some additional shots from today.
fall color on the golden larch (Pseudolarix amabilis) - deciduous conifer
'Black Olive' ornamental hot pepper (Capsicum annuum) - annual
'Tidal Wave Cherry' petunia (Petunia) - annual
the fetching fall color of 'Autumn Purple' white ash (Fraxinus americana) - woody tree
common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) ready to spread far and wide
the "chartreusy" end of the sunken garden