The first volunteer day at Laurelwood Arboretum brought out an enthusiastic group, who immediately set to work clearing the space that is to be the new Native Plant Demonstration Garden at the Knippenberg Center for Education. Friends of Laurelwood Arboretum (FOLA) welcomes volunteers every Tuesday from until October from 9 am to 12 noon. Volunteers learn alongside the horticultural manager and help to restore and improve Laurelwood’s gardens and beautify the unique Sensory Garden.
April is National Volunteer Month, and the volunteer season will begin at Laurelwood Arboretum on April 14 at 9 am at the arboretum’s pavilion. Volunteers are welcome to work in the park any Tuesday from now to October. Individuals are welcome anytime, and do not need to sign up in advance. They should bring water, small hand tools, and gardening gloves if they have them. Groups are asked to call 973-202-9579 to make arrangements in advance. Laurelwood Arboretum is located at 725 Pines Lake Drive West in Wayne.
In addition to gardening, there are a number of construction projects to maintain the bridges, paths, greenhouse and other structures in the arboretum. Friends of Laurelwood Arboretum (FOLA), the organization responsible for maintaining the park and managing the volunteers, also welcomes volunteers who might prefer to work offsite to join a committee or share special skills in communications, fundraising, membership development or any other area.
Friends of Laurelwood Arboretum (FOLA) hosted its annual Volunteer Recognition Luncheon on Saturday, March 14. The program featured a talk and slide show about Native Plant Gardens, presented by FOLA’s Executive Director, Elaine Fogerty. Ms. Fogerty was formerly County Agricultural Assistant, Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Passaic County and has taught many of the Master Gardener classes.
“We are very proud of our dedicated group of volunteers who have put in so many hours in the gardens and greenhouses of Laurelwood Arboretum, as well as those who serve on the FOLA Board of Directors,” said FOLA’s president, Alice Moskowitz. “In the 8 years since 2007, FOLA volunteers contributed a total of 82,798 hours of work in the arboretum. This translates into an estimated value to the community of $2,098,726.”
Friends of Laurelwood Arboretum opened its 2015 membership year with a talk at the Wayne Public Library on, “Medicinal Plants of the Civil War” given by Dr. Lesley Parness. Dr. Parness is Superintendent of Horticultural Education at the Morris County Park Commission and president of the Garden State Gardens Consortium.
Dr. Parness quoted General Ulysseys S. Grant as saying, “I will not move my army without onions.” This reflects the importance of plants in treating the sick and wounded during the Civil War. “The books known as Medicinal Botanies revolutionized plant-based medicine of the period and brought about the rise of today’s giant pharmaceutical companies,” she said. The illustrated texts, used by physicians in both the Union and Confederate armies, described the properties, uses, preparation and administration of a wide variety of plants. Continue reading →