Category Archives: Garden Committee


Have you ever tried persimmons?  One of the most common fruits in Asia, they come in two major varieties, heart-shaped Hachiya that is palatable only when soft while the more squat fuyu can be eaten as an apple.  Our highly knowledgeable chair of the Garden Committee, Bill Preston, owned a thriving orchard of organic fuyu persimmons for many years.  He has painstakingly grafted the trees with the best cultivars, yielding persimmons that are wonderfully tasty.  Bill will have a stand in the Holiday Bazaar this Friday. Do not deny yourself the opportunity to try them.

Contributed by Dorothy Yuan

Collington blooms at the end of summer…

By Marian Fuchs, photo editor


It’s been sad to see the leaves turning so early this year.  But Collington still has plenty of flower viewing left for you to enjoy.  Here are some examples from the Hilltop Garden, which you can visit for yourselves, ideally in the early morning of a sunny day.


In addition to the marigolds, cosmos, asters and daisies, there are still a few sunflowers, and lots of zinnias in full bloom.  Below are a few samples.

And some other close-up blooms…

There are still multi-colored morning glories along the garden fence…

morning glory

And a number of flowers whose names I do not know…


Many thanks once again to our talented photo editor and to our amazing gardeners!  Our community is more beautiful because of your efforts.

A New Feature: Our Weekly Flower Arrangements

We just owe so much to the Flower Committe.

The flowers they put together each week list quietly around our main buildings, and on our dinning tables, brining the natural world gently and lovingly into our lives.  They infuse every conversation and every amble.  Here is this week’s:


I suspect that few of us know what the plants are, how they came to be here, or any symbolic meaning they have.  We do, of course, see the gracefulness.

The Committee has agreed to provide us with information on each weeks arrangements.

You will be able to see an image on the top left column of the site, and by clicking it, get to both the information about that week, and the history and photos from prior weeks.

That can also be viewed on this page The Flower Arrangers of Collington


The Plant Sale Rocks

Photos from our annual plant sale, these taken on Saturday.

The sale continues next Saturday all morning, in the same place, near the greenhouse, where they were grown from seed.

Plants recommended for our environment, and fully “shovel ready.”

(Photo credits: Mike McCulley, except for the one of the team hiding in the tomato jungle, Richard Zorza.)






A Personal View on The Broader Opportunities in Our New Horticulturist Position at Collington

It’s good news that we at Collington are hiring a horticulturalist to make the most of our wonderful 125 acre wooded and lake campus.

And, if we take advantage of the opportunity, it would be wonderful news.

Obviously, the new person (formal job description here) will be able to coordinate and improve our existing campus landscape efforts.  As the online description says:

This Community Horticulturist serves as the “proprietor” for the campus; and duties encompass all aspects of landscaping maintenance including annuals, perennials, shrubs, trees, irrigation adjustments, grasses, aquatic plants, hardscapes, trash, snow related events, recycling cleanup, etc. The associate is responsible for consistently evaluating and maintaining the designated landscape as well as providing guidance and support to residents on their landscaping needs. This position will work in partnership with the maintenance team to provide community snow coverage and removal; supports the maintenance team with projects as needed.  All tasks utilize the best organic practices.

With the right person, the job could be even more exciting, and make an even bigger different to our lives.  One of the really unique things about Collngton is how much our residents are already involved with the landscape here, including leading our becoming a Certified Wildlife Habitat, being deeply engaged in clearing and cleaning-up (video link), and of course having a very active Grounds Committee.

So, I would see part of the job being fostering and building on that enthusiasm to engage even more residents in the enriching of our campus of nature island.  Little steps like committing to buy our own chipper make engagement so much greater.  There is also so much room for community education on our environment and how to love and improve it.

There is even another possibility.  More and more ageing experts are discovering the value of horticulture therapy (a term I only just learned).  As the above-linked website of the American Horticulture Therapy Association Says:

Horticultural therapy is a time-proven practice. The therapeutic benefits of garden environments have been documented since ancient times. In the 19th century, Dr. Benjamin Rush, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and recognized as the “Father of American Psychiatry,” was first to document the positive effect working in the garden had on individuals with mental illness.

I know it works for me.  Imagine more of this at Collington:

A therapeutic garden is a plant-dominated environment purposefully designed to facilitate interaction with the healing elements of nature. Interactions can be passive or active depending on the garden design and users’ needs. There are many sub-types of therapeutic gardens including healing gardens, enabling gardens, rehabilitation gardens, and restorative gardens.

What makes a garden therapeutic? The basic features of a therapeutic garden can include wide and gently graded accessible entrances and paths, raised planting beds and containers, and a sensory-oriented plant selection focused on color, texture, and fragrance. Learn more by reading AHTA’s characteristics of therapeutic gardens.

What a great job that could be!