Boardwalk gardens need early maintenance
In mid-June 2016, I contacted CBRM’s Parks and Grounds Maintenance and Development to express my concern about the lack of cultivation of the gardens along the boardwalk.
Staff assured me that when school let out, student workers would be on site and work would catch up.
No force in the universe can deter Cape Breton weeds until the end of June. Catching up didn’t happen.
In the meantime, killer dandelions, thistles, multi-tentacled purple vetch and Queen Anne’s Lace (as lovely as the latter is in the right place) flourished and succeeded in strangling what had been, I thought then, a bed of roses and Hydrangea situated behind Cambridge Suites in downtown Sydney.
By late summer, it was impossible to identify the original plantings at this site.
Eventually, similar disarray existed behind the bandstand between the hotel and the Civic Centre entrance to the boardwalk.
Work, when it began near the Joan Harriss Cruise Pavilion, reflected the professionalism of which CBRM Parks and Grounds staff is capable. But the late start precluded any timely finish.
Already this year, gardens behind the Civic Centre, Vista Heights and Holiday Inn need weeding, pruning and mulching. Several dozen rose beds between Cambridge Suites and the playground at the far end of the boardwalk appear never to have been cultivated. This is in contrast to the playground park plantings, which reflect excellence of care and attention.
Cape Breton Island is a tourist destination. Our world-class reputation precedes us. Citations in prestigious surveys and publications abound and are on public record: world-class golf courses; world-class driving and biking on the Cabot Trail; worldclass historical sites (Louisbourg, Bell Museum); music; and hospitality.
This season, the Port of Sydney expects to welcome 90 cruise ships. People from all over the world, having been ‘primed’ by all of the above, will be expecting a superior experience. Among the first things they’ll see when they disembark will be the immediate environs.
I do hope the boardwalk and its gardens will reflect our sterling reputation for beauty and excellence. Charlotte Musial Sydney