Officials To Clear ‘Sledding Hill’ Lawn at Waveny of Invasive Species, Prune Trees

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The nonprofit organization dedicated to restoring and improving Waveny Park is to embark on a new project focused on the sledding hill that runs east of the balcony behind the main house and down toward the pond, officials say.

Looking down below the parterre garden toward Waveny Pond. Credit: Michael Dinan

The Waveny Park Conservancy this year is focused on “redoing the pond and all the landscaping surrounding the pond,” Parks & Recreation Commission Chair Sally Campbell said during the group’s June 13 regular meeting.

As such, the Conservancy is seeking to clear of invasive species and brush the lawn that flanks the main central path down to the pond and to prune and clear of vines a set of white oak trees in the same area, according to Campbell. Plans also call for the removal of an “alien tree” on the lawn, she said. With those projects done, and the revitalization of the pond itself on the Conservancy’s roadmap, the vista and experience of walking down from Waveny House will be greatly improved, she said.

“The goal is to be able to walk off of the terrace, go into the beautiful parterre garden, you will walk down past the rose garden and there will be this green vista leading to the pond and you will see it,” she said at the meeting, held at Lapham Community Center. “Which is how it was designed originally.”

The Commission voted 9-0 in favor of allowing the Conservancy to pursue the landscaping work. Those voting included Campbell, Carl Mason, Matt Konspore, Jason Milligan, Laura Costigan, Francesca Segalas, Doug Richardson, Rona Siegel and Hank Green.

According to Campbell, herself a member of the Conservancy’s Board of Directors, the group is in the process of reviewing plans submitted for the projects, with an eye on supplying information for the town to issue a RFP. The Conservancy has funded its own projects in the past. With respect to clearing out invasive species and scrubs from the lawn, the Conservancy plans to tackle a small section of it and then cost it out. The pond work itself likely will not happen until the fall, Campbell said.

During the meeting, Commissioners asked whether the pond itself will be dredged as part of its restoration (yes) and whether the path around it will be off-limits while the work is underway (probably not).

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