Thursday 30 May 2013

The Earl Beatty Gardens Need Your Help

A Message from parent and gardener, Liza Ordubegian:

The Award Winning Earl Beatty Garden Needs Summer Help!
Did you know?
The garden began it’s journey in 2000, planned and planted by two parents at the request of the principal. It was a butterfly garden, and it was installed that April, along with the weeding and planting of the raised beds at the front of the school. The native garden, fence and teaching circle was designed by two parents, and installed in 2009. In 2009 and 2010, bulbs were planted in the garden and the front lawn. Who planted all these shrubs, plants and bulbs? The students, teachers and parents - working together. In 2009, the East York Garden Club awarded our garden with the Joan Grys Award for Native Gardens. We were all very proud.
Fruit and flowers for birds, bees, butterflies - and people!
Many of you have been admiring the garden first with the crocuses, then the daffodils, and now the Saskatoon berry shrubs with their airy white blossoms. You may not have noticed them yet, but there are violets, wild strawberries blooming now, and red and black currant bushes too. There are more to come! The elderberry, viburnum and ninebark shrubs are getting ready to bloom, and the butterfly bush, phlox, wild rose, purple flowering raspberry, cup flower, tall sunflower, asters, milkweed, trumpet vine among others will come later, throughout the summer. All these plants attract birds, butterflies, and the all-important bees.

Shade for our warming climate -
Along the boulevards round our school, and in the back field near the sport pad, are new trees. Although this wet April has been very beneficial to get them started, the very dry summers we’ve had for the last number of years have killed off some trees, and severely weakened others.

The gardens and the new trees need help. For the last 12 years, parents and students have signed up for a week during the summer to water the garden and the new trees. We have a large portable bucket filled with hoses, sprinklers, pliers, and a trug (essentially a flexible bucket with two handles). The big bucket is currently stored in the school, but it gets placed behind my house at 239
Wolverleigh Boulevard for the summer.

What can you do?
Pick a week in the summer, sign up for it, and keep the gardens and trees watered. If it rains all that week - lucky you! Otherwise, a couple of times a week for an hour or so will likely do the trick

If it’s your week, retrieve the bucket of hoses from my yard, and head to the front of the school. There is a spigot about half way between the front steps and the garden. Attach the hose, turn on the tap with the pliers, and water the front beds, the bed in the junior playground and the garden. Take the trug, fill it as high as you can lift it, and dump the water on the trees along the boulevards and at the back of the school. If you have a wagon, you can carry several buckets to the far reaches.

How do I sign up?
Take a look at the table (click link) - it shows the weeks of the summer. You can sign up by emailing me, with your name, preferred and secondary week (in case your first week is already filled), plus your email address and phone number. I will slot you in for your time, and the list will be posted on the blog.

Thank you for keeping our gardens and shade trees in good shape for now and the future.

Liza Ordubegian

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