1. The Wetland Boardwalk was finally completed this year and dedicated in April. The total cost was $300,000 over the last 4 years with the MPRB and The Friends splitting the cost. The first section incorporating the bridge was in honor of former Gardener Cary George. More details on the boardwalk here.
2. Curator Susan Wilkins is trying to keep ahead of the spread of Emerald Ash Borer by selectively removing each year some Green Ash trees in the Garden. Those deemed specimens worthy of being kept will be good specimens in their proper place. The photo shows more open space in the Fern Glen and more herbaceous plants growing, after the removal of a number of ash.
3. Restoration of wetland and prairie areas after removal of invasives. From 2015 through 2018 The Friends help fund a three year program of removing Reed Canary Grass, Sumac, Brambles and more. Those areas are being replanted. This past year The Friends funded. $5,100 of new plant purchases to fill in some of these areas. The photos of the wetland show the clearing done in 2018 and then the new growth in 2019. The third photo shows one of the formerly bare renovated areas in the upland with new plants filling in.
4. 780 children from 11 visited the Garden for a Summer program in 2019 with their bus transportation subsidized by the Friends. Friends photo. You can learn about that program here.
5. MPRB budgeting may allow some funds to be allocated to the Wildflower Garden in 2020 or 2021 and the MPRB planning staff solicited public input this past Fall on an addition to the Martha Crone Visitors Shelter and on moving the Gardener’s shed outside the Garden boundary fence. A rough sketch of the Shelter with the addition is shown. The Friends, who have consultation rights on any changes to the Shelter, approved the concept. Concept photo from MPRB.
6. The 50th anniversary of the start of construction of the Martha Crone Shelter was reached in September. The Friends designed, funded and built the Shelter. It had been a long process. The original Garden shelter/office was constructed in 1915 to Eloise Butler’s specifications. In 1969 it was 54 years old and had served 3 curators. Ken Avery called it "Miss Butler’s humble little office". Next May 13 we will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the dedication of the Shelter to Martha Crone and the transfer of it to Park Board and the City of Minneapolis. Shelter History Details.