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LeConte could still use help
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Editor, Hello, local LeConte-Woodmanston supporters.
You should have received or will be receiving a hard copy of our July newsletter. I also will be sending an image of the newsletter so that you may pass it on at your discretion.
The board has decided to close the gardens through the end of the year as we devote our attention to fundraising and using the volunteers we have to make the gardens as maintenance-free as possible. When we are able to hire a grounds and nursery person and necessary administrative staff, we will reopen a more impressive botanical gardens.
If you find some time to help out, here is a list of the scheduled work days through the rest of July. There is always weeding, mulching and burning debris if you’d like to come and work in peace.
We have closed the office at the site to save utility expenses and it is now a “volunteer center.” Volunteers can find water, ice, a microwave and a refrigerator. “Regulars” will know where to find the key.
It is sad that we need to close the gardens for now, but it is not necessarily a bad thing, either. We’ve been in construction mode for the past two years and have not been able to show the gardens at their best.
The Bulltown Swamp nature trails will remain open daily from dawn to dusk at no charge, and tours can be arranged of the site (including the gardens) for groups of six or more at the cost of $5 per person. The pavilion and facilities can be rented for events. All phone numbers are still active.
If you can help, just show up on a Saturday morning or contact me for access and instructions for another day.
• Saturday, July 17: Volunteers will be “sticking” nearly 1,000 Waycross and other camellia cuttings. They will also inventory and map existing camellias.
• Saturday, July 24: Volunteers will build a bridge over a canal at the rice field, build short foot bridges on the new west trail leading from the office to the main trails, repair existing bridges, install signage for trails and garden area closure.

— Mary Beth Evans
Foundation executive vice president
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