As Halloween approaches, those of us in the Lyons Garden Club feel a sadness we have not had to deal with before – no Chili Cook-Off! And no Town of Lyons Halloween Parade. Since the pandemic has changed everything we used to do, we all have had to come up with other ideas for fundraising, as well as just plain having fun.
The Lyons Garden Club, a volunteer organization, has been “making Lyons beautiful, one flower at a time,” since 2008. Our humble beginnings started with three local women who decided to tackle an empty space full of weeds, rock and rubble. It became known as the Butterfly Planter, located next to the old Steamboat Mountain Natural Foods store, at Fifth and High Streets. Since then, we have planted most of the areas in town that have flowers: The sandstone flower beds, along the east corridor of Highway 36, including the Welcome to Lyons sign flower bed. The areas around the Firehouse and the Visitor Center. All the flowering beds along the Main Street shops. The West Wall, the triangle of land on the west corner of Highway 36 and Fifth Avenue, across from the Stone Cup café. And, the High Street berm, in front of the dynamite shed on High Street, west of the Lyons Physical Therapy building. And, of course, the Butterfly Planter. We also installed watering and irrigation systems.
The Great Flood of 2013 heavily impacted all of those gardens. It destroyed the water supply and damaged the gardens individually.
Four years ago, the Town of Lyons decided to take control of many of these gardens, and has hired a landscaping company to maintain them, and have rebuilt damaged planters and irrigation systems. The Town waters the larger areas. But, we volunteers still design, plant, mulch and weed the berm, the Butterfly Planter and the West Wall. The West Wall has large rocks that people can sit on. People take photos of themselves, the flowers and the bears. (The West Wall is CDOT property, and we have permission from them to manage the garden.)
We took on two new projects in 2020. We designed, purchased and planted the flowers in front of the new Lyons Community Library. And, we designed and donated a rock bench to the Rocky Mountain Botanic Gardens. We use mostly perennials in our plantings, but use annuals for fill ins and pops of color.
Moving forward to 2021, we plan to have a local “garden tour” as a fundraiser. We think there is enough interest in our small town regarding private gardens in Lyons. It would be an opportunity to visit gardens in town that are beautiful, and to get to know gardeners who have been successful in tackling the Colorado elements. We are hoping this can happen in late spring or early summer of 2021. Please let us know if you wish to volunteer your garden to be included in this tour. And, of course, we are keeping our fingers crossed that in 2021, we will be able to return to the Chili Cook-Off that follows the Halloween parade, in the Stone Cup parking lot, thanks to the café owners.
The Lyons Garden Club has a Facebook page, as well as a newly-designed website: www.lyonsgardenclub.com. These are both ways for us to let the community know what we are about, as well as our latest projects. If you need further assistance, you can call me at (720) 580-2475.
We continually seek new members, as none of this work happens without volunteers. You will meet great new friends, and share gardening tips. Watch out for their articles over the coming months with gardening advice. If you are interested in learning more about the Lyons Garden Club, please visit our website. If you are interested in donating to our endeavors, please send your donation to: Lyons Garden Club, P.O. Box 154, Lyons Colorado 80540. And remember – gardening is good for the soul, getting your hands in the dirt is beneficial to all of us!
Treasurer and Founding Member
Lyons Garden Club