By Margie Steffens
Member, Riderwood Sustainability Project
One of the most attractive things about Riderwood is its landscaping, thanks to Jack Vargo and his hardworking crew. There are many favorite spots on the grounds enjoyed by our residents, and one particular place is our “Gazebo” or “Swan” pond, as it was once called, the only pond owned by Riderwood on our grounds. Our other ponds are maintained by surrounding counties. The Gazebo pond is beginning to need some special maintenance and enhancement, and the Riderwood Sustainability Committee RSC has submitted a proposal to Jack Vargo and the administration to that end. This will include improving the water quality, addressing the algae build-up in the pond and adding native plants and shrubs that are both colorful and beneficial to wildlife as well appealing to the eye. We also want to discourage residents from offering food to waterfowl, as the presence of bird life which has taken up residence is adding to the water quality problem. A sign will be placed at the pond, with information about this concern.
The project will evolve over time, and we are seeking advice from knowledgeable pros at county parks and pond management experts to gather information as to how best to beautify the pond and demonstrate our eco-friendly ethic at Riderwood. We expect there are many gardeners at Riderwood that could offer positive comments and we invite their suggestions.