Members of several community service organizations came together May 2 to plant the flowerbed in front of the newly renovated Milton Fire Department.
The Milton Garden Club, the Women's Club of Milton and Anna Fantoli, a Cape student, provided the design, the plants and the work for the new garden. The ladies auxiliary came up with the idea and the Milton Fire Department provided the space. The final touch to the garden was the return of Megee, the stone Dalmatian mascot dog that was painted several times over the past years by the late Myra Oates. After many months of being stored in a garage while the building was being renovated, John Oates gave Megee a touch-up before bringing him to the garden.
"As we began to finish up the construction part of the renovation, a group of auxiliary members questioned what was going to be done with the newly created flowerbed that sat empty," said Mary Ann Warrington, Milton Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary president. "Knowing the great work that the Milton Garden Club does in our town led me to place a phone call to Kathryn Greig, a longtime member of the club. From that one phone call, we had five community organizations come together and put a beautiful finishing touch on our fire station. The bonus was bringing our mascot Megee back to his proper spot."
"When I answered the phone and Mary Ann explained the situation, I wasn't sure, because the garden club is stretched pretty thin right now – but I didn't want to say no," said Greig. "A few minutes after the phone call from Mary Ann, I received a message from Nancy Trask asking if I had any work, as her granddaughter had been inducted into the National Honor Society at Cape and needed to do some community service hours. I was familiar with Anna's work as she had helped me in the past, so I called Mary Ann and told her the project was a go."
The project was funded by the Women's Club of Milton using leftover funds from the pollinator garden project from two years ago.
"The Women's Club of Milton was proud to provide the firehouse flower garden with the plants and support the work of the Milton Garden Club," said Carol Ann Stone, club president. "We enjoyed attending the planting and look forward to the array of beautiful, colorful blossoms."
The garden is a mix of small shrubs, perennials and annuals. Because the view from the double window overlooking the garden must be kept clear, consideration had to be given to plant heights. The garden will be monitored by several garden club members throughout the growing season to deadhead and check the plants’ growth. Members of the Ladies Auxiliary will take care of the watering. Daffodil and tulip bulbs will be planted in the fall for spring blooms.
"This was a wonderful project, and I'm so glad I was able to be a part of it," said Greig. “I just love how so many worked together to achieve it. The community service hours requirement is fantastic; Anna was perfect and it was such a pleasure to work with her. I hope the Milton Garden Club will be asked to supervise other students in the future."