Design and Construction Update

If you have not stopped by the garden to see what is going, make a point to take a look.

Immediately you’ll see that the bamboo has been replaced by an expanse of gravel along North St. This will be, as it has always been, the working backbone of the garden. Tool and equipment storage will be here.

A reasonable question is “Why gravel?” The gravel you see right now is the base layer. Another layer of much finer, compactable crushed stone is yet to be applied. When finished, the surface will be solid and easy to walk on but also permeable, readily repaired, and ADA accessible.

It will also be obvious when you first enter the garden that a new perimeter retaining wall is well underway, replacing the crumbling railroad ties around the corner at 19th and North and along North up to the driveway. Less obvious, but no less necessary, the old railroad ties have been replaced along the 19th Street and the 18th Street perimeters. These were urgent maintenance issues that are now behind us.

We want to thank the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS) for the generous grant that made it possible for us to undertake these important upgrades.

Looking to the future, the Garden’s Design Committee met recently to kick off significant planning efforts for this season. For gardeners who would like to be involved, the committee will be meeting the 3rd Thursday of each month in the garden, weather permitting. The Design Committee could really use volunteers with an architecture, landscape, or engineering background. If you enjoy collaborative efforts to find a good balance among competing needs and wants and opinions, the Design Committee wants you. If you just want to feel closer to what’s going on in the future, the Design Committee wants you.

Below are some of the things we are currently working on as well as some of the aspirations and challenges moving forward.

Still happening:

  • Repair of beds in urgent need
  • Addition of accessible beds (temporary location)
  • Working with PHS, Parks & Recreation, the Spring Garden CDC, and the Garden Fundraising Committee on budget

Wish list:

  • Central, shaded gathering area for community activities, teaching and fundraising events
  • Bulk storage bays (2 – 10’x10’) where the chip pile currently sits
  • Expanded composting
  • Storage building in new North St work area
  • Utility water and electric service
  • ADA accessible central paths
  • Shade structures both east and west of the cherry trees
  • Permanent accessible beds

Of course we will need to continue to enhance our fundraising efforts and put in a lot of volunteer time to accomplish these goals.