Resident-Driven Positive Change

Submitted by Panorama resident, Alice Falter – April 2020

We all like to hear about making a change, and about something moving forward. I think this story will put a smile on your face.

New sign created by Dave Taylor and Larry Pratt.

C & R Garden needed a new look, something different and exciting to show off the beautiful flowers that are grown in the raised boxes. Cathy Smith and I, Alice Falter, started last fall to plan the updates to be ready for spring 2020.

Phase 1.  We started with renaming the gardens, “Blue Zone Gardens”.

Phase 2.  We asked Dave Taylor and Larry Pratt from the Wood Shop to create a new sign, and they did a beautiful job. Thank you Dave and Larry for all your time and hard work, we love our new sign for the garden. It really helps to sharpen the new garden look.

Paintings by Neil Harris on the new privacy curtain.

Phase 3.  We then followed what Pam Burdick did out in her Pea Patch garden and that was to put up a privacy screen around the back fence which makes your eye stop at the black privacy curtain and look at the beautiful gardens. Thank you Pam for the great idea. Cathy ordered the curtains and when the weather allowed us to, we put up 100’ of our new privacy curtain on the South West end of the chain link fence, behind the Garden House located out in the Pea Patch.

Paintings by Neil Harris on the new privacy curtain.

Phase 4.  But, an exciting phase was yet to be accomplished. We asked Neil Harris, last fall, to paint large flowers on four boards 24” x 24”and two boards 24” x 30”. He agreed and worked over the winter and created six eye-catching paintings of different flowers. We gave him free range of what flowers to paint and what colors to choose. Neil did an amazing job; the paintings are bright, cheerful and full of love. We hung these pictures up on the privacy covered fence and they are truly works of art. This was an interesting way for Neil to show off his talent and for us to update our garden area. Art work and flower boxes, who knew that would be such an uplifting experience for all to view and admire? Thank You Neil.

Phase 5.  Look for a new painted little potting shed…as weather permits.

Name plaques are being created in the Clay Arts Studio for individual gardens (this work is on pause until the studio reopens).

Phase 6.  Name identification plaques are being made in clay arts for the gardeners who tend the individual garden boxes. This is a work in progress, and as soon as the clay arts room opens again, I can finish the name identification signs for the boxes.

So, you can see we have not been idle out in the Blue Zone Gardens. We love our flowers and love seeing smiles on faces of people walking around our garden boxes. If you are out enjoying the sunshine, come and see our new garden area (while social distancing!), enjoy the intimate feeling our curtain brings and enjoy our private art show. Truly, this is a one-of-a-kind experience for an adult senior living community. This garden speaks volumes; we can heal together, work together and laugh together. That’s what a Blue Zone is truly about. Take a walk and enjoy the Pea Patch; you won’t be disappointed.

Flowers are donated to:

  1.  Friday Share
  2. New Mother’ Day at Food Bank
  3. Senior Day at Food Bank
  4. Meals on Wheels 2020
  5. Assisted living
  6. Special Occasions – C & R
  7. Friends in Recovery

Flower arrangements, and decorative pumpkins are sold in the Gift Shop to help fund our garden projects.

Now, did we put a smile on your face?

Cathy Smith and Alice Falter

8 thoughts on “Resident-Driven Positive Change

  1. So Happy to be part of the Blue Zone both in the garden and here at Panorama. I had to read the book to know what the Blue Zone is. A special place of longevity, community and happiness.

  2. Great idea Cathy and Alice! And asking Neil to decorate was a brilliant choice. Can’t wait to take a look.

  3. Now, I will extend my neighborhood “ambling” across Golf Club Rd. to the
    Pea Patch…..great selling job!!! Such talented people we have here!!!

  4. Thanks for the pat on the back, I definitely enjoyed making the paintings. Thank You for giving me the opportunity to participate in the wonderful “Blue Zone Project”.

  5. Wow, I was in the back row when God handed out the talent to grow anything. Still can’t figure where our son in Austin TX and his two teen girls inherited the genes. The first places they want to visit here are Pea Patch and Woodshop.

    I do appreciate the talented green thumbs and never missed every Friday Share in former years. Can’t wait to go out to see the beautiful paintings and signs. Thanks!

  6. It’s a wonderful place to wander and refresh your soul. You gals have worked to make a beautiful area for all of us. Thank you !

  7. Excellent ! Kudos galore to the above group of individuals that continue to make the Peapatch and Our community garden areas that much more enjoyable and uplifting. May we all enjoy these additions and beautiful changes. Thank you !

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