Committee worked to improve garden

Published 6:16 pm Saturday, July 12, 2014

I had the privilege, along with 26 other people, of following Vicki Trimble on the Peace Garden tour.  Every time I am out there I learn something new. Today I learned that the tree in the middle of the pond feature is a Weeping Magnolia.

I also learned that many weeds imitate the plant they are growing next too making it hard to recognize them. I think there is a life lesson in that fact.

Before the tour, I explained to the group how the garden came to be what it is today.  Many of you probably remember the efforts of a group known as the R&R Committee.

A weeping mulberry bush in the garden of the Hormel Historic Home. Photo provided

A weeping mulberry bush in the garden of the Hormel Historic Home. Photo provided

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This group, led by Pat Ray, was formed to bring restoration and rejuvenation to the Hormel Home.  Their projects originally focused on beautifying the interior of the Home and then shifted to the exterior.

At that time, the late 1990’s, the east lawn, where the garden is now, was bare and had very few plantings.

Because of their fundraising efforts, the R&R committee was able to work with Berg’s Nursery to design a space that would be enjoyed by the community and those visiting the Home.  Many of the original plants were donated by members of the community.

As the plans progressed a major fundraising dinner was planned for Sept. 11, 2001. Following the tragic events of that morning, the group faced a tough decision in whether to proceed with the dinner.

They did chose to go ahead with their plans, and the evening turned into a prayer service for the victims of the terrorist attacks. Pat said the setting for the dinner was peaceful and somewhat healing for those in attendance. In the week following 9/11, the R&R Committee found it appropriate to name the garden area “The Peace Garden.”

Today, nearly 15 years after the initial plans, the garden has grown and matured into a place where people can sit quietly, where families can enjoy musical concerts, where newlyweds can celebrate their happiness and where visitors can stroll and enjoy the beauty of the season.

Luther Burbank, botanist, horticulturist and pioneer in agriculture, said “Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food and medicine for the soul.”

I hope visitors to our garden find soul food in the Hormel Historic Home Peace Garden.

 Circle of Friends Day Camp for youth affected with Autism

July 14-18, 2014

Tours of the Home will be limited.

 Peace Garden Concert

July 21, 2014 6:30 p.m., free

The Bazillions will entertain families with kid friendly rock-n-roll. The Twin Cities Duo brings songs to life through illustration, animation and activities.

Bring a blanket, a lawn chair or just your dancing shoes and enjoy our beautiful garden.