The Power of One

Spring has come early this year!  But there's bad news with the frost coming, and this other thing...

With the warmest winter on record, instead of gentle snow (1” of rain can equal 10” of snow!) that would gradually melt into the ground, we've had intense, flooding rain. While our Woodland Horticulturist has been hard at work in the woods getting the water erosion under control there, our Daffodil Bowl trail has been eroding over the years, but exponentially since last year, and all the patch jobs of fresh wood chips just aren't cutting it.

You may notice when you visit that there is something different.  Something that you may find inconvenient.  Perhaps disappointing.  Maybe perhaps even frustrating.  But hopefully not angering.  Because there are several reasons for this new thingamajig.

While the grounds are still open and accessible to the public, the paths through the Daffodil Bowl are closed until they can be repaired.

Of course, we want you to visit and explore and enjoy. But as many hands make light work, many feet have a lot of impact.

Especially when visitors disrespect public garden etiquette and bushwhack (leave the trail).

This is your power. You. One single person. You’ve got a lot of power. Because you’re not alone.

You can say, “I’m just one gentle person going off trail because I love this place and want to document my love with a photo in the bowl”. And then 2,10, 100, 5,000 other visitors think the same thing.  You are not alone.

Daffodils are trampled. Places where they used to grow now look like paths because now nothing can grow there. More people walk those damaged areas to get their family portraits and selfies. Despite our many posted etiquette signs to stay on paths, paved areas, and lawns, visitors trespass and devastate our gardens.

One at a time.

This is your power.

April is a popular month. The Daffodil Bowl is our signature garden display (although we have so much more to offer in every season!).

Sadly, we’re having to destroy the view and garden experience with signs in order to protect our plants and our soil health from your singular power.

My dad, an engineer, physics major, amateur astronomer, and casual appreciator of wild flora, once caught me at the Minuteman Memorial plucking a daffodil from a field. When I came back, he asked me if I liked that flower. Of course! He then explained that because I’d picked it, no one else would be able to enjoy it. And it would wither soon because it was taken away from its roots.

One man taught me to appreciate nature and the world with my eyes. I’m passing on that wisdom. That’s the power of one man. I’m giving it to you to pass on to your children.

We all have so much more power than we think we do.  Even small decisions and actions have an impact.  It's easy to say, "It's just this once, oh it's only me, how could this matter?"  It matters.

Remember my dad who taught me to save the flower so others would be able to love it? 

Now remember your personal impact on a public garden, be it with your feet, your donations, your friendships where I get to greet you by name year after year, your memberships, your weddings with new guests, your volunteering.

You have power. Individually. You really do. Here and elsewhere.  Because you are not alone.

So all of that said, you may be mad, sad, disappointed, but we hope to have the path through the Daffodil Bowl reopened by Daffodil Day!  

I know I sometimes sign off with, "See you in the gardens!" but please know that I don't literally mean in the gardens!