Continuing Growth in a Difficult Time


Birds chirping, wind blowing through the trees, bees buzzing around—just a few beautiful things you can hear while at the Arboretum during this time when campus is closed. COVID-19 has greatly changed how our community is operating but some Arboretum staff and students are still working to keep the site beautiful and the gardens growing. While practicing social distancing, we have been busy in our community vegetable gardens harvesting food to take to the Knights Helping Knights Pantry a couple days a week, while also sharing food with our various essential personnel including grounds crew and housekeepers. Pruning plants, fixing irrigation, turning beds, mulching, and weeding are among some of the things we have been busy doing in the gardens to make sure they continue to thrive and are ready for students when they can return.

While on site, we have been hard at work not only in our community vegetable gardens, but also our greenhouse and propagation house, and new landscape installations. We have taken advantage of this time when there are fewer people on campus to do tasks such as pressure wash our greenhouse floors, clean out the drains, wash the windows, and organize our plants. Even though we deeply miss our volunteers and bustling campus atmosphere, we are grateful for the time to do special projects we otherwise may not have had time to do. Our site, gardens, greenhouse, and landscapes are so very important to us and the UCF community we will make sure they are loved and cared for in this time of uncertainty.

Keeping the various gardens and spaces on our site maintained in a time where we have temporarily lost all our volunteers has been challenging, but it is nothing that we can’t handle! We are grateful for the opportunity we have been given to continue to come to the space we love and provide maintenance so it is ready to go when our wonderful students, faculty, and staff have returned.

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