Oct. 15 was a busy day for the Garwood Green Team as the group — with other community volunteers — completed a second planting, this one at the “Rankin Street Triangle” formed where Rankin and Locust avenues and Oak Street come together. The site contains a memorial dedicated to the deceased members of the Garwood Police Reserves, Police Department and Fire Department and the team believed it was in need of an overhaul.
There was a large oak tree on site, but it suffered from a previous topping, falling limbs and tip dieback. While depressing, the tree had to be removed. After the tree removal, the Garwood Department of Public Works (thank you to Lenny Navarro and the whole staff) used a backhoe to dig out the oak tree roots and provide planting holes. Then team members Andrea Castro, Rich Faustino and the entire Blumenstock family of Andy, Jen, Lena and Cece followed the directions of site manager Dori Dec to plant three winterberry hollies, five Eastern redbud trees and one American Holly. Garwood Fire Department members Alan Tweedle and Joe Pelusio brought the firetruck in to water all of the plants before the team backfilled with leaf mulch, (thank you Westfield Conservation Center) and finished the plantings with wood chips supplied by Fanwood (thank you, Fanwood).
With administrative support from Garwood Business Administrator Kyle Harris, and Kathleen Wierzbinski, Janice Farrell, and Sandy Bruns from Garwood Boro Hall, technical support from Harbor Consultants in Cranford, tremendous supply and distribution coordination from the Garwood Department of Public Works, and plants supplied by Dreyer’s farms in Cranford, as well as all of those people mentioned previously, this was truly a community effort, and is gratefully acknowledged and appreciated by the Green Team.
The planting design is based on the evergreen, native American Holly becoming a 25-40 specimen planting in the center of the island, with the deciduous and early flowering and purple fall color Redbuds forming a copse of trees surrounding it. The deciduous trees will drop their leaves in the fall, opening it up for the American Holly with its bright red berries taking center stage in the winter months. All of the plants are native to New Jersey. We hope that this landscape grows into a beautiful improvement for the Borough of Garwood.