Plan a garden, clear a trail, take a stroll

Friends of Wallisch holding garden tour and trail clearing

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  • Photos provided Members of the Echo Lake Baptist Church helped out at Wallisch recently by beautifying the property.

Flower gardens, vegetable gardens, medicinal gardens and an educational garden are now being planned at the Wallisch homestead and members of the Friends of Wallisch Homestead are looking for help from the public.

On Saturday, July 19, the group will host a garden tour and trail clearing event at the property, located on Lincoln Ave., from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

"Part of our master plan is to restore the use of the homestead to its previous life," said John Hefferon, president of the group. "No plans exist but the flower gardens in front of the home were restored earlier this year. We are seeking community input to further beautify the property for all to enjoy."

The group will provide tools for clearing brush off the trails next Saturday. Their hope is to open the trail from behind the barn down to the foot bridge, past the vernal pool to the bottom of Sophie Lane.

"These trails are part of the system installed by Ramapo College several years ago," Hefferon noted. "They have become overgrown and just need a good trim. The trail bed is good so there won't be any heavy lifting. With a good turn out, we should have it all wrapped up by noon."

They will also be tagging native plants, including flowers and berries, for fall transplant into an educational garden. They would like help identifying the native plants.

In the fall, he said, the group will be looking asking residents to donate perennial plants from their home gardens. They will hold a seminar on the proper techniques for transplanting mature plants.

"So if you have some perennials that have become unruly, you will learn how to tame them," he said in a release.

They are also looking for designs for the flower beds now so there will be plan come the fall.

"Please come out and explore with us to see what other treasures await," Hefferon said. "Thanks to the success of our recent tool drive, we will provide tools, but if you have a favorite one you would like to use, please bring it along."

Whether you want to help plan a garden, clear a trail, identify plants, birds and bugs or take a stroll on the property, Friends of Wallisch Homestead will welcome the help next Saturday.

Coffee and refreshments will be served starting at 8 a.m.

The Friends of Wallisch Homestead is a group dedicated to the preservation and restoration of the 100-acre Wallisch Homestead as open space, a community exhibition hall and educational learning center.

For more information, visit the group on Facebook at friends of Wallisch Homestead or contact them at

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West Milford, NJ