|The Friends of Peanut Park worked with Christina Harris, City of Winnipeg Landscape Architect, to develop plans for the park, and we enlisted the help of Jean Trottier, who teaches landscape design at the University of Manitoba, to sketch out what the park could look like.|
|After two years of planning and meetings, restoration of Peanut Park began the fall of 2009.
We applied to Manitoba Hydro for a grant under their Forest Enhancement Program and were approved for a generous $12,000 grant. We contracted the City to supply, plant, maintain and guarantee the trees. The City planted 20 trees funded by this grant in the North and West sides of the park.
The city planted 9 trees in the spring of 2010 to replace trees that had been lost to disease over previous years.
These trees fill in gaps where trees have died, and add colourful species, including crab apples, Amur maple and tree lilacs.
In 2009, the City installed a catch basin in Peanut Park to drain the SW corner. The following spring was the first time there was no flooding in that corner of the park. A huge step forward!
To date, Friends of Peanut Park have contributed over $70,000 from individual “Friends of Peanut Park” for the beautification of the park.
Working through the adopt-a-park program with the city, private donors receive a charitable donation receipt for the money they contribute.
The city budgeted $110,000 over a few years to the park project, based on a promise that the residents in the community will also contribute to the beautification of the park.
Over the summer, City crews achieved a great deal despite the constant rain. They:
Over the winter, Gerard Bizdel & Jess Dixon made detailed plans for all the flower gardens, and ordered the stock. We also applied for and received a second Reforestation grant from Manitoba Hydro.
In the spring, Friends participated in a number of work bees to plant trees and to move topsoil, while Gerard and Jess were planting the gardens.
That year, many Friends have volunteered to weed & maintain the flower beds. We have also engaged Take Pride Winnipeg to keep the park looking great by doing watering, maintenance, and mowing in the summer months.
We have contracted Inspire Garden Design to manage the maintenance of the park and most of the flower gardens this summer.
The primary goal of the garden design is to ensure that all of the garden beds are healthy. Because most of the gardens are planted around large mature trees, much of the soil gets depleted of nutrients and moisture. A combination of 4-way soil, compost and leaf mold is added to all the beds, and leaf mold is added every spring and fall to ensure the continued health of the soil. Leaves are gathered and saved in the designated compost area.
The secondary goal of the garden design is to put plants in their optimum habitat. Many of the garden beds only get partial sun due to the number of trees, so plant material needs to be compatible with this habitat. Plant material also needs to have foliage that shows in the shady spots.
The final goal is to minimize the yearly plant costs. Now 80% of the plants in the park are shrubs and perennials. Annuals are mixed in with these perennials for season-long color and interest.
Each garden bed is unique; there is a rose garden, a ‘white’ garden, a butterfly garden and herb garden, two blended gardens and a deep shade garden. Each of these beds represents the different gardening styles that are common in Winnipeg. All of the plant material is hardy for Manitoba winters.
We would like to acknowledge and thank everyone who has contributed to this park renovation project. Thanks to everyone who picks up litter, branches and generally assists in the park maintenance.
The City of Winnipeg continues to be supportive in many ways. We have a wonderful working relationship with the City of Winnipeg.