Native plant garden almost ready at Glass Center

Published on Saturday, 31 May 2014 23:18 - Written by Kelly Gooch kgooch@tylerpaper.com

A garden that will allow residents to learn more about native plants is nearing completion.

The project is outside the Glass Recreation Center at Woldert Park, 501 W. 32nd St.

Keep Tyler Beautiful Liaison Gary Lynch, with the Tyler Parks and Recreation Department, said the Tyler Native Plant Garden, still being installed, will be about 6,000 square feet and include a crushed granite walkway, along with interpretive signs and boulders. Plans also include a web page for garden plants and a printed guide.

“The purpose of the garden is to show visitors how they can use native plants in their landscaping, whether it’s at home or business,” Lynch said.

At the same time, he said, visitors will be able to see how they can save time and money — and conserve the environment — by using native plants.

Throughout the project, volunteers from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, with some help from Parks maintenance workers, have been a tremendous benefit and done a lot of work in a short time, Lynch said.

He said 15 to 30 people from the church have been willing to help on a given weekend. Since the February groundbreaking, church volunteers have worked on at least eight Saturdays.

“People have volunteered and worked to till the earth, plant, lay edging, mulch, and create a scenic and special garden full of native plants from Texas,” according to a news release. “Their efforts have resulted in hundreds of plants and trees being planted for all to enjoy.”

“The process has been special to see develop. A grass hillside has transformed into a beautiful sight with a path that leads to the walking trails and a pond at the bottom of the hill,” the release states.

The garden is expected to officially open in mid-June, depending on weather conditions.

“I think it’s going to be really great. I’m so excited that we’re getting close to the end,” Lynch said.

The Tyler Native Plant Garden is being funded through donations and Keep Tyler Beautiful’s Project Daffodil.

Project sponsors include Wilhite Landscape, Crown Civil Construction Corp., Habitat for Humanity of Smith County, Nestle Pure Life, East Texas Council of Governments, Republic Services, Trane/Ingersoll Rand and All Natural Stone & Grass.