|Making It Happen|
On October 9th, 2004, Bob Childress and Lee Coates set to work on the rock garden. Bob, holding the shovel, is the garden chairman of Friends of the Garden, the nonprofit group that co-creates and maintains the botanical gardens in Close Memorial Park. Lee, a commercial plant grower and member of the group, contributes plant expertise and, let's face it, plenty of good old-fashioned work.
|Scoping It Out|
Both Bob and Lee belong to Friends of the Garden, the nonprofit organization formed in 1998 with two missions: first, to help create and maintain the gardens in Close Park; second, to raise funds to build a new Botanical Center. Bob, the group's garden chairman, was also its secretary.
|Shaping the Garden|
With the first outlines of the garden set and the first stones in place, Bob and Lee tend to the finer points of the project.
Just a few days later, on October 15th, Bill Roston was setting more native limestone rock in place. Bill, another Friends of the Garden member, hauled tons of the rock from his and his wife Judy's Garden of Dreams near Sparta, Missouri, where the couple grow hundreds of hostas, iris, lilies and other plants, have thousands of visitors annually, and host many weddings.
It doesn't take a genius to see that Bill Roston not only likes designing gardens, but loves doing the work. In addition to helping build the Rock Garden, he also designed and built the park's remarkable new Ornamental Grass Garden.
|Paths and Plantings|
There's no moss growing on Bob Childress, Lee Coates, and Bill Roston. By October 24th, the path to the top of the Rock Garden and its first plantings were in place.
|The Next Spring|
The next spring, on April 27th, the Rock Garden made a serene and engaging picture planted with beautiful white tulips, and with more color to come.
Scenic planted walkways can lead visitors through the beautiful Hosta Garden in Close Memorial Park and the adjoining Rock Garden & Waterfall.
|A Sea of Color|
Later in 2005 the garden becomes a sea of color richly planted with impatiens, bright red sage, and other annuals.
|Pile of Dirt|