Museum’s garden sees cutbacks

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 31, 2013

SALISBURY — The Rowan Museum garden ain’t what it used to be.
A crew of apparent county gardeners trimmed several bushes and trees down to the bark Wednesday evening, leaving museum officials flabbergasted.
Museum Executive Director Kaye Hirst called the gardening a “mistake” but added that the heavily edited garden “will be rectified.”
Crew workers apparently started trimming around the county courthouse before transitioning behind the historic North Main Street museum.
No one from the county was available for comment Thursday evening.
“The young men on the crew didn’t know what they were doing,” Hirst said. “They thought they were doing something good.”
The trunks of several golden mop shrubs sat essentially bare Thursday afternoon. A group of camellias and sasanquas sat “desecrated,” Hirst said, and a lace leaf Japanese maple was missing a side. The garden’s blooming knockout roses were flowerless.
Hirst said county officials have contacted her with plans to hire Bill Godley, the garden’s original designer, to fix the injured shrubs and remove now-defunct ones.
But Hirst said she’s looking for the silver lining in the experience.
“In the meantime, I have a lot of bare space,” she said. “We will fill in with smaller things and a lot of flowers. I’m positive. I’m optimistic.”
A wedding planned for late June was slated to shoot photos in the garden, Hirst said.
She hopes to have the “Oasis,” as she called it, back to its mirage-like state.
“Part of an event will take place in a month and it’ll be pretty again,” she said, “with enough water and fertilizer.”