Sidney gardener is on a mission

Helping keep plant beds on Lochside Drive clear is Sidney woman’s way of giving back

Sidney resident Lucia Fallot holds up a dandelion she plucked from a plant bed on Lochside Drive. She encourages other people using the walkway to pull a few weeds when they can.

Don Descoteau/News staff

Using a hollow, cylindrical tool, Lucia Fallot delicately digs at the root of a dandelion that has grown in the middle of another plant in a bed on Lochside Drive.

With a flick of her wrist the weed comes out, roots and all.

“Look at how long they are,” she says, pointing to the tendrils that once extended five or six inches into the ground.

Dandelions are her sworn enemy.

Next to the stretch of beds nearest her home on Frost Road lies an embankment angling toward to a lower walkway. It’s covered in the yellow flowers now, but many of the blooms have turned to seed and will soon be carried by the wind into the bark mulch, where Town parks workers created a beautiful garden not so long ago.

The ongoing transfer of seeds causes havoc in Fallot’s eyes. So much so that she wages her own personal battle, usually two or three times a week on her walks along the seawall, against dandelions and other weeds that infiltrate the beds.

She admits to being a little slower these days than she used to be, given her need, at 89, to use a walker to get around.

Otherwise her weeding activities might extend further down Lochside.

As such, she is putting out a call to other walkway users and residents to dig in, so to speak, and help keep the beds free of weeds.

“There’s nothing wrong with citizens helping with something the Town created, to keep it beautiful,” she says.

“It cost taxpayers a lot of money to put this in.”

She has shared her thoughts about the weed situation with parks staff at the Town of Sidney, including parks superintendent Brian Coward.

In peak season, he says, parks crews go through the beds about every two weeks to keep them free of weeds. This summer has been a little tougher to give the beds as much attention as Fallot would like, he adds, with staff working hard to get Iroquois Park completed.

As for having the public trooping through the beds targeting weeds, Coward says, “We would be fine with that.”

However, he cautions against anyone weeding along the embankment.

Getting some help with her dandelion crusade would be a simple way for people to give something back in return for experiencing the beauty of the walkway, Fallot says.

“Maybe people think I’m crazy. But if (it takes) getting a little attention (to help keep the beds weed-free), then it’s worth it.”

If you’d like to help out, please call Lucia Fallot at 250-656-7537.

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