Volunteers Get High Line Spruced Up For Spring
Spring cleaning is now under way on the High Line thanks to the help of hundreds of green thumbed volunteers. NY1's Roger Clark filed the following report.
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Hundreds of volunteers spent a chilly morning Tuesday preparing the High Line for spring and summer.
"Just as we are starting to see green growth emerging from the crowns of the plants we know that it's time to get in their before the bulbs start blooming," said Friends of the High Line Chief Operating Officer Melissa Fisher.
Friends of the High Line maintains and operates the former railway that runs along Manhattan's West Side from Gansevoort Street in the Meatpacking District to 30th Street.
Their staff and volunteers kicked off their spring cutback with a ceremony Tuesday, beginning a six week process of trimming a mile of parkland in the sky.
"It's a very delicate period for the beds because as you are walking through trying to cut back the spent material from last season, you also have to be aware of all the new emerging growth that's coming up," said High Line Horticulture Foreman Johnny Linville.
"Really go plant by plant and cut back to within a few inches of the ground," added Fisher.
The effort is all done by hand and with clippers. No power tools are used in order to protect the plants.
"It's a lot of work, but the results in the spring when everything is actually coming up, it's great," said High Line Gardener John Gunderson.
The project will produce around 150 cubic yards of plant clippings, which will be turned into compost at the city's composting facility at Fresh Kills on Staten Island. Friends of the High Line's founders say it all wouldn't be possible without the help of hundreds of volunteers.
"It's this very symbolic and practical act, you cut away and as soon as you cut out you see these green shoots coming back and you'll back day after day and see it growing so quickly now," said High Line Co-Founder Robert Hammond.
A third section of the High Line is in the works which will run from 30th to 34th Streets.
The first designs will be presented at a community meeting Monday night in Chelsea.
For more information, visit thehighline.org.