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The Gardening Girls decorate entrance at Vastwood Park

The Gardening Girls; Patty Lamar, Sandra Conder, Susan Swihart and Alberta Morris decorate Vastwood Park’s entrance with beautiful flowers.

Patty Lamar, of Lewisport, has always liked plants and she loves Vastwood Park. One summer, about fourteen years ago, she says, “I called the judge’s office and asked about planting some flowers at the Park entrance. The idea was well received and I have been planting ever since. I have known the other gardening girls since they were in high school. They are absolutely marvelous, hardworking and creative.”

Lamar and Susan Swihart have worked together on various master gardener activities. “Several years ago, we raised ten different varieties of sweet corn and compared the results and donated the corn to several food pantries in the county, she said.” “Evan Tate, the county’s extension agent, was also very helpful in that project.”

Susan has worked with the senior citizens, the library and other groups, preparing raised beds for vegetables, flowers and herbs. She, along with Francis Voyles, worked to establish a seed library at the Hawesville Branch Library. Library patrons can collect seeds, free of charge, for their home gardens.

Sandra Conder joined the group this year and is ”truly remarkable,” Patty said. “She has beautiful flowers at her home and has worked tirelessly on the flower beds at the Park, as well as the Courthouse and her church. She has a green thumb and knows when to divide plants and rearrange them for a more attractive appearance.”

In addition to gardening projects, Alberta Morris “has a gift for working with people and is truly a blessing to our group,” Patty said. “She has good ideas and is an inspiration to all.”
“We love Hancock County and appreciate the beautiful park. In addition to helping to make the park look better, there is the added benefit of enjoying working outside and reconnecting with nature. It’s soothing to the soul,” she said.  We work well together as a group. Each person is equally important. We all have families and work when it fits our schedules.”
Patty added, “Once at a Lions Club meeting, I heard someone quote: ‘I can’t do everything, but I can do something.’ I think these words can apply to our situation; if we can do something to help our county, it matters.

Even 15 minutes volunteered, makes a difference. We welcome others who would like to join us.”

Patty was born and raised on a farm 6 miles from Lewisport. Her father, Jesse Moore White was always interested in Soil Conservation and the environment. Her mother was a homemaker who loved the County Homemakers Group that she attended. She has one brother, Max White, who lives in Louisville.
She and Leroy were married in 1999 and will be celebrating their 22nd wedding anniversary this month. Patty’s 3 children are Mark, Paul and Matt. She is also blessed with a granddaughter, Isabella Cambron, who is almost twelve-years-old.

By Jennifer Wimmer

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