On Wednesday, which was an unseasonably mild day, more like April than November, dozens of volunteers from Greenwich Green & Clean and local garden clubs planted thousands of bulbs in the grassy island at the foot of Stanwich Rd at East Putnam Ave, soon to be renamed “Chestnut Allée.”
Workers from the Town’s Dept of Public Works used their equipment to dig holes into which volunteers placed crocuses and hyacinths.
“If we’re going to keep our prominent position as one of the most desirable communities in America, beauty is important,” said Ashley Cole, a member of both the Town’s Greenscape Committee and Sustainability Committee.
“A huge thank you to the volunteers and all the town departments who came together to make this happen,” said Alice Ruf, adding that in the spring the field of crocuses will dovetail nicely with “Crocus Hill” at the intersection of Maple Ave and East Putnam Ave.
“The effort to support the beautification of the Post Road has the support of the Selectmen, the Greenwich Tree Conservancy, Parks & Rec and all the garden clubs,” said Hortulus member Kathryn Payne, adding that her group is 90 years old and is one of the three Garden Club of American Clubs on Town.
Shelby Saer, who is an auxiliary member of Hortulus, said she enjoyed the educational aspect of the organization.
“Yesterday we watched a video from our president who showed us how to take our dahlia tubers and put them to bed for the winter,” Saer said. “Anyone can become a gardener. We learn from the masters.”
In addition to educating members about gardening, the group does outreach to places like the Nathaniel Witherell and The Mews.
Greenwich First Selectman Fred Camillo said he hoped the Chestnut Allée project would be the first of many public-private partnerships to beautify the town.
“Whether it’s buildings, or parkland, or islands – we’re looking for this type of partnership and spirit,” he added. “It’s great to see dozens of citizens working side-by-side with our great employees of DPW. Next spring you’ll see a very different island here.”
Camillo said a few weeks ago the Town got the project started by planting bulbs on the western portion of the island.
In sum, he said about 10,000 bulbs would be planted.
“I hope that not only will newcomers coming to Town via Exit 4 on I95 be impressed with the beauty of Greenwich, but that residents will enjoy the Chestnut Allée as well,” Camillo added.
“Greenwich’s beauty enhances our lives and supports our property values, which are very much tied to the fact that we have space and trees,” she added. “It’s all hand-in-hand about keeping the Town sustainable, beautiful, livable and a pleasure to be in.”
The Chestnut Allée project is the first of six projects that stretch between Greenwich’s borders with Port Chester and Stamford. The hope is to move and improve the bus stop, improve the existing sidewalk, and, in the long-term, reclaim the paved area at the north end of the island.
Other locations to be targeted for beautification include the gateway to Greenwich in Byram by Carvel, the grassy triangle by the car dealerships on West Putnam Ave, and the grassy islands at Exit 5 near Riverside Commons.
P&Z Watch: Chestnut Island Discussion Focuses on Responsibility for Maintenance
Sept 15, 2020
Greenscape Committee Seeks Public Comment on Proposed “Chestnut Island” in Cos Cob
Sept 7, 2020