BuxMont Unitarian Universalist Fellowship

Gardening

Next Volunteer Gardens Work Day

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Saturday, April 6, 8:55 a.m. update

Surfaces are wet, but the ground at home is not that squishy.  We will get started at 10 a.m. though the afternoon will probably be nicer. Remember your gloves (I don’t have any decent gloves to lend) and water-resistant footwear! If you have insect repellent, bring it and wear it. Ticks can be out almost any time of year. We are in Lyme-Disease-central here. At least one member of the congregation got Lyme disease last year. Deer are common in our Gardens, and probably the mice are too.

Saturday, April 6, 12:15 p.m. update

The morning was beautiful after all! Rick, Dale, Ken, and Susie worked for a couple of hours on skilled pruning (Rick), and raking (Susie, Ken, Dale). Large areas of the Celebration Garden are still very muddy, and lawn mower skidding/rut damage is very apparent from last year. There’s plenty left for afternoon volunteers, plus more beautiful weather. See you at 2 p.m.!

Saturday, April 6, Evening update

The afternoon weather was beautiful with blue skies, sunshine, minimal wind, and temperatures in the low 60s. Dale had continued working through the lunch hour, having moved over to his tee-bed near Street Road. Nancy arrived early and helped him. Aaron arrived with Caelan and Sean. They worked on raking leaves, many of them sodden in squishy lawn, over near the rear parking lot. That area has never dried out since last spring, a 45-year “first” according to Dale. Nancy and Melissa cut back Beautyberries and pruned off perennial foliage. Melissa pulled up bittercress and another mustard before they set any pods. She was pleased to note that the Physostegia and ‘Husker Red’ Penstemon that she planted last year are looking good. Sean and Caelan moved on to helping Nancy and Melissa with their branches and some hauling. Susie assisted Aaron with the leaves. John took on cage and vine removal from the parking lot edge of the Detention Basin Wild Garden. Some of the grapevine stems, protected by cages that had been left too long in place without weeding, were at least 1″ in diameter. John also cut back vines that were starting to invade the memorial Copper Beech near the front driveway property entrance. Overall, tarp after tarp of leaves and branches were dumped in the back-40 where they will start to decompose. Maybe in a few years we can start hugelkultur plantings back there. THANKS to everyone who came out on short notice and worked hard.

As the rest of us departed, Harry and Dave arrived to plant native perennials in the Detention Basin and check out the area.

We observed that the beavers are backThis year they are harvesting branches from two of the Cornelian Cherry Dogwoods by the labyrinth. The cages are damaged (did the beavers do that?) so that the beavers have been able to harvest multiple branches. New cages are needed pronto.

Today’s workers: Aaron, Caelan, Dale, Dave, Harry, John, KenMelissa, Nancy, Rick, Sean, Susie.

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Email gardening@buxmontuu.org to RSVP for the work day. (Drop-ins are also welcome.) We’ll contact you with suggestions on what to bring to keep you comfortable and productive. Newcomers are always welcome, including people who have never visited the Fellowship before!

What to Bring to a Gardens Work Event
  1. Yourself and family members old enough to focus with your supervision.*
  2. Hat, work gloves, closed-toe footwear, sweat towel or scarf.
  3. Water bottle.
  4. Sunscreen and insect repellent. (Keep in mind that ticks/Lyme disease are always a possibility.)
  5. Favorite hand tools labelled with your name(!)
Ahead of Time
  1. *Let us know if you need child care at least one week ahead of time.
  2. If you have physical limitations, let us know so that we can prepare a comfortable task for you(!)

To read the latest Garden News

(occasional updates on what’s happening in the Gardens), check out the sidebar to the right.

 About Our Location

The BuxMont Unitarian Universalist Fellowship is located on a three-acre site in Warrington, Pa, bordering the beautiful Little Neshaminy Creek.  Our second-floor sanctuary and social hall, as well as the ground-level religious education classrooms, overlook the creek and gardens.

Entrance Gardens 

11891041_10100451832810728_1842733898988507703_nOur gardens include flowers, trees, and shrubs in the parking lot and at the main building entrance. Ornamental trees include ‘Arnold Promise’ witch-hazels, which bloom in February/March, fringetrees, and a fragrant sweet bay magnolia as well as showy roses and perennials.

Detention Basin Wild Garden

Growing apace is our Detention Basin Wild Garden, which features a looping path system leading between Spring, Winter, Summer, and Autumn Circles.  This garden, founded in 2009 with two grants¹  ², features mostly native trees, shrubs, wildflowers and grasses selected from the PaFlora list for the Neshaminy watershed.  Of special note are pawpaws, beach plums, hearts-a-burstin’ native euonymus, coralberries, winterberry hollies, and American beech.

Celebration Garden

Between the building and the creek is our Celebration Garden, also first planted in 2009 with grant funding² and additional financial support from BuxMont’s Memorial Garden Fund.  This very large garden consists of the Celebration Lawn surrounded by three long and undulating garden beds. Anchor trees are bur oaks, planted in 2011.  Major trees and many shrubs were selected from woody plants native to the Neshaminy watershed.  With the addition of roses and hydrangeas, and many moisture-tolerant perennials, this garden is designed for year-round display.

For the last several years our pawpaw trees have been yielding signficant amounts of fruit in September. Pawpaws are the largest native fruit in North America. We sell fruit to the congregation and at a farmers’ market. Last year we also experimented with pawpaw ice cream.

Maintenance

Although our lawns are mowed by a contractor (with a volunteer substituting several weeks during the summer), all other maintenance and gardens development is the work of congregational volunteers.  Several of our volunteers have professional expertise and work experience.

Challenges in gardening on our site include deer, geese, ordinary rodents, sometimes beavers, and frequent flooding.  We find it necessary to protect almost all of our plants year round with cages and/or homemade repellent sprays.

Despite animal challenges and the heat of summer, we gardeners rejoice in bird song, the lazy creek, fluttering of butterflies, and the beauty of flowers, leaves, and fruits that surrounds us. 

Contact: gardening@buxmontuu.org for more information about BuxMont’s Gardens and Grounds.

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¹from the League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania Citizen Education Fund, through Section 319 of the Federal Clean Water Act (US EPA)

²from Aqua Pennsylvania through TreeVitalize Watersheds Program (Pennsylvania DCNR)

(Click on any photo to view it full size.)