The Kansas State University Gardens are beautiful to visit in the springtime. Different plants and flowers are carefully cultivated by employees and volunteers for guests’ viewing pleasure. The gardens also host different events throughout the school year and summer.
Emily Hall, landscaping technician, said her role includes managing the gardens, helping guests and organizing volunteers.
“I talk with visitors who come and see the gardens and answer questions that they have,” Hall said. “I work closely with volunteers, which includes students, and give them projects for them to work on.”
Readying the gardens for springtime is no small task, and it couldn’t be done without K-State students, Hall said.
“We start in the wintertime for the spring prep, which includes working closely with the horticultural department here at Kansas State and [asking] for the plants to be grown by the students,” Hall said.
Ten thousand tulip bulbs were planted in the gardens in the fall of 2022, and more vegetation will be planted on the property once they bloom, Hall said.
Gardening isn’t the only thing that needs to be done to ensure the gardens are in top shape.
“Our prepping for spring includes cleaning up the beds, raking the leaves, cutting down the ornament or dead grass, removing the dead annuals that were left behind, dividing the big grasses and cutting them up into small pieces,” Hall said. “Another thing that we do for spring prep is dig out the plants that cannot survive in the winter and put them in a greenhouse for them to stay alive for spring.”
Terry Olson, retired volunteer and board member of Friends of the Gardens, said her role with Friends of the Gardens is important.
“We helped raise money to enhance the gardens and help fund internships at the garden to enhance education,” Olson said. “The way in which we raise money is by sponsoring different types of events for the gardens which help fund the internships.”
Some events this spring include K-State Open House, a daylily sale, Run for the Roses 2023, Tulip Egg-Stravaganza Photo Op and an iris sale, according to the Kansas State University Gardens website.
Ana Vasquez, junior in theatre, said she thoroughly enjoyed her first time at gardens.
“Overall, it was a fun experience,” Vasquez said. “I would love to go back sometime during the summer or close to fall to check out all the flowers and components of the gardens at their peak.”