Today saw a lot of action out in the gardens after a long weekend. Larry and Cindy did a nice job watering yesterday (John and volunteers on Sunday) and while we expected more rain today, it didn't materialize until the afternoon. The nice morning though allowed for the installation and placement of a new fountain (see above and below) out in our 3 acre pond. This Fleur de Lis fountain has three levels and is quite substantial in terms of scale (shoots almost 40' high). We had instant compliments from visitors and all the school children at the gardens for our educational programs this morning! This is a donor-funded addition to the gardens and not only adds beauty but functionality in regards to keeping that pond aerated and circulating. The second photo down shows our volunteer Bob K. (standing) and Joel Reinders (from Reinders Inc.) getting the fountain ready for placement. Bob K. had been involved every step of the way and his talents have been appreciated. The photo below them shows Big John (red suspenders) and Ron P. mucking out branches and other debris from the east end of the pond where we usually have an accumulation. It's a messy and stinky task but the guys did a nice job and Joel R. and Bob K. helped as well as another Reinder's employee on site. The fountain is a great addition to that area for sure.
Another large project going on this morning was the continued excavation and preparation of our three brick patios in front of the Parker Education Center (see the guys above). Years of wear and tear (and salt) had made this surface dangerous so we'll be having concrete poured in these three circles later this week. Thus, the task was to removed deteriorating block/brick and excavate the circles to a 6" depth. We had a great team on this including Terry, Larry, Kevin C., Ron W., Bob C., Emmett and Dick H. Supervision was provided by Dick P. and Maury F. seen relaxing below. Garden volunteers today included Kay and Joanne (third photo down, Kay to the left) who did a great job tidying up the larch wall planting bed which we'll start planting tomorrow. Ron B. continued scooping up old mulch in the rose garden and accumulated quite a few loads. Eva, Bethany, Kathy P. and Mary H. all did some planting (see their photos below) in various locations. Urban did some serious shrub pruning and both Bill O. and Dr. Gredler did their mowing rounds. Dave E. did a nice job tidying up his area in the formal gardens. Stan was in and Art H. came in to take the large passenger cart out for a spin and "mock tour." We also saw Dr. Yahr, Ron Y. and many others today.
Dick P. (left) and Maury F. supervising
Kay (left) and Joanne (back all the way from NC!)
Bethany planting in the sunken garden
Eva planting in the sunken garden
Kathy (left) and Mary planting near the gazebo
Above is the Joseph Rock peony (Paeonia rockii) looking splendid this morning! This is a rare tree peony and is worth the space for only 10 days of awesome color on these 12" wide double flowers. The grounds staff had a busy day and we had everyone but Jenny today. Big John helped with the pond projects and made another plant run this afternoon. Terry helped with the patio project out front and moved on to watering and other tasks before it started pouring. Larry also helped with the patio project, checked over water features and did some push mowing. Pat also push mowed and helped "lift" spent tulips (Tulipa) in front of the building. Cindy and Cheryl were attached at the hip today and did a nice job weeding the Nancy Yahr Memorial Children's Garden (we hope to plant this Saturday at the Volunteer Workday), watering the yard and doing some significant planting in the afternoon. Janice helped organize labels, did the cutting display and helped prepare for the Volunteer Potluck tonight among other tasks. Everyone had indoor projects at the end of the day as the rains arrived. I hauled plants out to three areas today and bounced between some various projects as well. More plant shots below!
tricolor European beech (Fagus sylvatica 'Roseomarginata') from beneath!
a columbine (Aquilegia sp.) close-up
'Purple Smoke' false indigo (Baptisia x hybrida) starting to bloom
white meadowrue (Thalictrum aquilegifolium 'Alba')
perennial gromwell (Buglossoides purpureocaeruleum)