Hufnagle Park Garden Celebrates 30 Years
Hufnagle Park Garden is the Lewisburg Garden Club’s signature project. Club members have been planting and mulching and pruning and weeding this verdant plot for nearly three decades. Over the years, the garden has become a downtown focal point where passersby can observe the changing growing seasons. In early fall, after the flowers have faded, the garden is home to the Garden Club’s beloved band of scarecrows. As the holidays approach the garden becomes the stomping ground for the Borough of Lewisburg’s lighted deer.
The garden was conceived in 1986 when the Garden Club presented a proposal to the Borough asking to create and maintain a garden in Hufnagle Park on a triangular plot bordering Market Street. That fall, a handful of Garden Club members dug through the clay and rubble that remained from buildings that came down following the flood of 1972. They planted the garden’s first spring bulbs—daffodils and daylilies—and a hawthorn tree. By the spring of 1987, the Club had purchased an underground watering system, which in the Borough installed. Under the direction of longstanding member Betty Lou McClure, garden club members began planting—cotoneasters lining the walkways into the park, junipers and variegated liriope along Market Street, azaleas, rhododendron, viburnum, euonymus alata and miscanthus, among others. They were chosen for their year-round interest and planted in masses for maximum effect.
Gardens are always in a state of change, from day to day, season to season and year to year. But by 1993 the Hufnagle Garden was ready for a major update. Carolynn Harrison, who passed on last year, joined Mrs. McClure as co-chair of the Hufnagle Park Garden. Together they oversaw a redesign and replanting with assistance from exterior designer Chip Cowher. For the next 21 years they were responsible for the ongoing evolution and maintenance of the garden.
New plants, bulbs, water bills and other garden services are financed through the Garden Club fund-raising activities, while Bucknell University provides and delivers mulch each spring. The coordinated efforts and hard work of Lewisburg Garden
Club members assure that the garden in Hufnagle Park thrives. Club members come together as group several times a year for planting, mulching and pruning. Throughout the summer months individual members take turns weeding and deadheading to keep the garden looking its best.
In 2014 Mrs. McClure and Mrs. Harrison retired as Hufnagle Park committee co-chairs, turning their duties over to Club members Mary Eve Zangari and Kathy Frey. Looking forward, Mrs. Zangari and Mrs. Frey see the garden moving toward primarily native perennials, conserving water, reducing tedious deadheading and bringing more varied color to the garden.
Work, Grow, Share with Enthusiasm! As a non-profit organization we WORK to benefit our community through such activities as the planting and maintenance of public gardens, a strong scholarship program, free monthly educational presentations and the support of local and regional like-minded organizations. We GROW, individually and as a group, as we learn about gardening, horticulture, conservation and environmental issues. We enthusiastically SHARE our knowledge with each other and with the community at large.