Story initially submitted by Wynyard Integrated Facility
"Plants change lives." This is what brings together a group of dedicated volunteers who share a passion to create beautiful and interesting grounds at the Wynyard Integrated Facility. They are known as the Morning Glory Gardeners (MGG).
Their work on the grounds began in the spring of 2014 with pruning neglected shrubs and trees. A planting bee in May of that year resulted in four gardening enthusiasts agreeing to meet weekly to maintain and upkeep the beds. Community members became involved by donating a wide assortment of perennials. With care and attention and much needed rainfall, the plants thrived.
Joyce Syrota, Geraldine Forden, Cindy Sunquist and Beverley Keyser gathering weekly in the early mornings to plan, weed, and plant. They tended to the plantings initially designed by Ted Czarnecki in 2001 when Golden Acres was relocated next to the hospital. Their vision was to restore a cared-for environment that would be an inspiration to the community.
The Morning Glory Gardeners in front of one of their impressive flower beds.
Since then, both the Golden Acres and Wynyard Hospital Auxiliaries have caught the vision to restore the glory of the gardens and have provided financial support for the transformation of the grounds. As well, private donations have been received. The Town of Wynyard supplied in-kind services by adding soil and removing dead trees.
This past summer, the beds were planted with vegetables. That sparked the interest of both residents and staff with one resident saying, "It's time to hill those potatoes." The gardens also provide an avenue for many residents with a history of gardening to enjoy the vegetables amongst the flowers. Often, you will find residents from Golden Acres and patients from the hospitals touring the beds during the warmer months.
At Christmas time, volunteers add lights, garlands and dried arrangements to enhance the season and provide an interesting view for the residents.
This year, in preparation for celebrating Canada's 150th birthday, over 100 special edition red and white tulip bulbs were donated by the Town and planted at the main entrance to the Integrated Health Facility.
The number of MGG increases each season as new individuals who love to garden join the group. Currently, there are eleven active volunteers, who work with staff, for watering, pruning and planting bees.
The courtyard has become a restful place for staff and residents alike, and a place where families can gather.
The MGG's mission statement is "plants change lives." You can see this through the stories and conversations people have about this remarkable place.
On behalf of everyone at Wynyard Integrated Facility, thank-you to our Morning Glory Gardeners. Your efforts make this a better place to live and to work.