Submitted by Judy Leheny
Last Spring about ten members signed up to work on the Pocket Park in downtown Chappaqua. It quickly evolved into a tight core that met every Thursday at 9:30 and worked until noon. There were as many as 10 on a day but never fewer than 5 and people came according to their own schedules. One day one of the group who hadn’t been expected because of medical problems came anyway because “I miss everyone”.
We worked hard even in the intense heat of the summer and came to be known as the “summer sweaters”. But, most of all, people got to know and care about each other and, as a bonus, learned what was a weed and what was a plant, how to prune, when to deadhead and when not, the proper way to transplant and all sorts of other garden knowledge. Each day we worked, people stopped by, admired what we were doing and said how much they used and loved the Park. One day, Board members from the Pleasantville Garden Club visited to inspect and admire and take away ideas for their own public garden. And each day, as we were finishing, we would look around and admire the difference we had made that day. And what was needed the following week!Among the things we accomplished: ivy and Climbing Hydrangea were removed from the neighboring walls, bags and bags of weeds and pruning’s taken to the dump, Paulo Carvao (Maria’s husband) excavated a bronze plaque honoring the CGC which had been hidden by overgrown plants and moved it to a prominent place near the benches, Brian Wigley and a friend removed a hornet’s nest the size of a basketball that we hadn’t noticed until August, a stone from the garden was carved as a memorial to Maria Carvao who had worked on the Park but died suddenly in December, poison ivy was eradicated, and much more. And throughout the summer Alwyn Boyd (Anne’s husband) weed-whacked the grass. Along the way, we gratefully drank water brought over from the cleaners across the street, enjoyed lemonade Emma purchased, and devoured goodies from Brian and Judy. The end of summer was celebrated with lunch on Judy’s patio where the now-experienced gardeners tactfully avoided mentioning the weeds!
We are not an exclusive group and would enthusiastically welcome anyone who wanted to show up on Thursday mornings. Contact Anne Boyd or Judy Leheny if you would like to join us.