Did you know that the gardens at Peter White Public Library are maintained entirely by volunteers and donations?
In 2008, Carol Fitzgerald approached the library about developing the garden space in front of the building as part of her master gardener certification project. Carol has moved, but her project lives on! A group of volunteers, many of whom are also master gardeners, continue to care for the Library gardens. She has since completed her certification and continues to head a small group of volunteers, many of whom are also earning their master gardener certification. This amazing group continues to expand the garden space to make it a pleasant place to read, get WiFi, eat lunch, or simply enjoy being outside.
The butterfly garden on the south side of the building was created as a master gardener volunteer project shortly after the new addition was completed. For a few years, it was neglected. However, it has now been re-established by Master Gardener Carol Fitzgerald. The wrought-iron gate was created by local blacksmith and sculptor, Gordon Gearhart, for the pocket park that was located on the south side of Washington Street. It was donated to the Library when that space was developed by Aubrey’s.
Betsy Clow Memorial Garden:
The wheelchair-accessible garden area on Front Street was dedicated to Betsy Clow on August 29, 2008. Betsy lived most of her life in Lake Forest, Illinois. In the 1940s, she started to visit the Huron Mountain Club. This tradition continued for over 60 years until her death in February 2005 at the age of 76. Friends and relatives wanted to develop a suitable memorial to Betsy with gifts to PWPL in her memory. The layout of the paths and walls surrounding the burr oak trees was designed by her godson, Ted Haffner. Her three children Emily, Taddy, and K.C. helped with the initial selection of plants. Master Gardeners have since expanded and maintained the gardens with the help of other volunteers.
How you can help maintain the gardens:
Donations to the library may be designated for garden use. Garden expenses include the cost of tools, new plants, mulch, fertilizer, and soil. Donations may be made online, dropped off at the main desk, or mailed to:
PWPL Garden Fund
Peter White Public Library
217 N. Front Street
Marquette, MI 49855