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Friday, 23 September 2016

The courtyard garden

The courtyard garden at the hospital in Summerside, Prince Edward Island is tended by volunteers from the Summerside Garden Club. That's how I became involved with the garden, through the garden club and our family's experience with the hospital. 

Our first born granddaughter was a reluctant newborn whose life was saved by the staff at that hospital. We sat in a room in that building, 

 

afraid that our baby girl would not survive. I noticed that garden, covered in snow at that time. Later, I wanted to give back in some way. 

 

Work in the garden was a nice break from the work with people I had done for my entire career.

 

Volunteers are organized into teams from May to October and work on a schedule. 

 

While we work, hospital staff often drop by to thank us for our efforts.

 

On occasion, patients have been wheeled into the garden as well. For staff and patients alike, the garden is a welcome sight and space amid the life and death decisions of the facility.

 

By September, the garden is in its late season colour. 

 

It is still beautiful, but many plants are ready for the rest to come in the next number of months.

 

Next month, we will put the plants to bed for the long sleep.

 

This past summer, it was the scene of a wedding as well. The garden is a beautiful, silent witness to all aspects of life. It is an honour to be part of it.

 

 

21 comments:

  1. Good for you and the hospital.
    Our garden is so ragged. I need desperately to trim.
    After that I will need to get it ready for winter.
    But not yet.

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    1. Ours needs a trim this weekend before the compost is collected next week. Hope the rain stops.

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  2. How incredibly wonderful to have such a garden, well tended, at the hospital. I imagine the patients whose spirits are lifted by it on fine days during the year. Thank you for sharing this with me. :-)

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  3. This is such a good gift. In my town the local garden club maintains the bridge over the river year round. All summer they tend and water the flower boxes. Soon they will be hanging garlands and filling the boxes with pine greens.

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    1. The work of the garden club in your area sounds wonderful too.

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  4. HOw lovely! Every Xmas, we take stuffed animals to the Children's Hospital that saved our youngest daughter when we was born. (the one that they saved on a Christmas eve almost 40 years ago.) Good on you. :)

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    1. How wonderful that you still commemorate your child's great fortune.

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  5. A wonderful worthwhile effort. Thank you to women like you. After I retired, I volunteered at a local park for several years. I know how hard that work is.

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    1. I do what I can. It is easy when everyone does a bit.

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  6. Wonderful gift to the hospital and your community. I think it feels so good to work in a garden.

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    1. It really does, Celia. Garden work is rewarding.

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  7. What a wonderful, wonderful idea. Our hospitals would benefit from something similar. Beauty and calm are more than welcome there.
    Thank you so much for the work - and for sharing the beauty.

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    1. Gardens are places of serenity. The work is a investment in serenity, EC.

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  8. What a beautiful labour of love. I'm sure it's appreciated by alll

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    1. It is a labour of love, for my granddaughter and others who may be going through the same or worse.

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  9. There are so many different ways to give back. Looks like a very nice garden for a hospital.

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    1. There are many ways to give, FG. This is one which I enjoy!

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  10. What a lovely way to honor the people who helped your granddaughter through a scary time. I am beyond words because I am so touched.

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    1. It is a great way for me to give back doing something I enjoy. I also know the value of the garden to the patients, staff and families, so it makes the work so easy!

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  11. Having worked in the National Health Service for over 30 years (on the admin side), I know how important the surroundings can help patients and relatives. I do volunteer gardening in a community space and it makes it so worthwhile when passers by appreciate what you have done. Sarah x

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