Week 21, September 18, 2023, Ashton House Project GREEN Gardens

Hi All,

Week 21 at the AHPGG was very busy and noisy!  We had 15 volunteers working since Week 20, Iowa City Parks and Rec had a crew (4 trucks?) cutting down and removing Ash trees, and Bill Blair continued removing invasives from north AHPGG beds.  One volunteer brought mulch to cover daffodils planted last week, another volunteer brought blackberry lilies (leopard lily) to plant, 2 volunteers installed 30 orange flags around the parking lot locating where 30 donated boxwood will be planted, other volunteers watered, dead headed, and weeded flower beds and side walks leading to the Ashton House.  We checked our rain gauges and not a drop had fallen since Week 20.  Containers in front of the house were fertilized and watered.  As always, our time went quickly.

Those in attendance were:  Sue Mullins, Pat Yeggy, Mary Laughlin, Hetty Hall, Susan Ahrens, Dhyana Kaufman, Lisa Haverkamp, Lisa Haverkamp & Jim Peters ( Week 20 work), Chris Ostrander, Monica Hoherz, Monica Hoherz (also worked September 17 for 1 1/2 hours), Jo Pattschull, Bill Blair, and moi.  Two volunteers worked an extra 1 1/2 hour each,  two volunteers worked an extra hour each, another volunteer worked an extra 1/2 hour.  Whew!  If any volunteer works more than the two hours (9 – 11 a.m.) please note the times on our sign-in sheet or shoot me an email or text (319-430-6649).  Our 2023 year will be a record year for volunteering!  FYI: Project GREEN has worked at the AHPGG since 2013.  Our first BIG planting was at the Triangle bed in 2019.  Thank goodness pictures taken using my cell phone tell the date and year!

Here are the numbers after working for 21 weeks at the AHPGG.  Weeks 1 – 20 + Week 21 = 755 1/2 hours + 35 hours = 790 1/2 hours!!!  

Congratulations to Project GREEN volunteers and a million thanks.  Imagine how the Gardens would look without 790 1/2 hours working this season!

Week 22 volunteer work will be Monday, September 25 from 9 – 11 a.m. Iowa City Parks and Rec are bringing 2 truckloads of mulch. If any volunteer could bring their wheelbarrow it would be a big help! Please put you name on it. Also, thanks to Tyler Baird for using 811 to locate underground utilities around the parking lot and 30 orange flags with boxwood written on them.

Beth Cody and her son plan to dig 3 boxwood for volunteers to plant Monday morning. If all goes well, we will plant the other 27 boxwood in weeks to come. Larry Allen will be with us Monday to dig the three holes needed for Beth’s boxwood. We will circle the newly planted boxwood with mulch and water well. Thanks to Beth Cody, Cindy Parsons, Ed Rinderspacher, and Tyler Baird for their help making plans for the boxwood’s planting. It’s been challenging.

If you haven’t stopped by the AHPGG for a while, this would be the perfect time. Our recent rains and hard work have made the gardens worth an in-person visit. Three of our beds are along the hiking/biking trail closest to Park Road (Triangle, Quilt, and Mary’s tree). The Dashes # 1 – 7 can be seen along the hiking/biking trail from Park Road to Normandy Drive. Bring your binoculars along to see our other beds and any action along the meandering Iowa River. ANYONE can park their car at the 820 Park Road parking lot and walk the 8 + acre park.

Our 2023 work can be seen on the east side of the Ashton House now. Volunteers are working hard to establish rudbeckia beds. Project GREEN volunteers plan to fill an east oval with variegated Solomon Seal plants next spring. If anyone has a few variegated Solomon Seal plants to donate please let me know. I’m thinking with Project GREEN support this will be a gorgeous bed visitors will see and enjoy for years to come!

Wishing everyone a wonderful week’s end! Hope to see you next Monday. It’s very possible volunteers will break into the 800 hours for 2023! Until then, happy gardening. Diane

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *