Cheshire Pollinator Pathway - Just the beginning!
Updated: Sep 18, 2021
Approval was given by the town of Cheshire on October 9, 2019 to allow our group to create a Pollinator Pathway garden at our first choice: the Farmington Canal Heritage Trail, across from the Lock 12 Historic Site on North Brooksvale Road.
The site was neglected and unloved. It needed TLC and elbow grease. We had stars in our eyes.
The Cheshire Pollinator Pathway held its first formal presentation on our plans at the First Congregational Church in February of 2020 with 80 people in attendance. Cheshire was ready for this. They heard about pollinator populations being decimated and they wanted to help.
Fundraising, grant writing and promotion followed.
By January 2020, we were able to contract with well-known landscape designer, Kathy Connolly. She would design the space using our wish list and determining which native plants were best for this site. The "Flower Meadow Garden" would be approximately 1175 square feet and feature native perennials. Among them, coneflowers, agastache, mountain mint and monarda.
The site, itself, was completely overrun with invasive plants, dead ash trees and grass. The planting area had to be prepared. We used the smother technique, cardboard on the grass and topped with hefty amounts of woodchips. It would take about one full year before it was ready.
That's when we decided to give people something to talk about while we waited for the main garden: The Summer Splash Garden. This garden, planted in May 2020, is bounded along the fence by the sidewalk and street, was made up of natives, cultivars, annuals and perennials. The colors were eye-popping and so unexpected for both users of the trail and cars passing by. So many compliments. One sums it up: "What a treat!"
Groundbreaking for the main garden began May 8, 2021. June brought the next two waves of plantings and voila!
Thanks to our fun & phenomenal volunteers who did it all: mowing grass, weeding, planting, watering, and deadheading. Thank you Katie B., Joanna D., Joanna G., Will V., Linda B., Michele S., Claudia O., Joan S., Ed S., Jenna P., Jeanna M., Nick M., Leon M., Karen S., Dave H, Maya/Moe G., Irene M., Dell K., Fiona P., Josh S., Dani E., Clair L. and many thanks to those who helped to get the project off the ground and made it a success: Pamela R., Karen S., Linda B., Fiona P, Joanna d. and Joanna G.