The Creation of Our Water Garden
Last Spring Sr. Maria Teresa began constructing a water garden in Our Lady of Fatima's garden area. We thought you might enjoy watching its progress over the past year.
It began very small, just a cement mixing container covered in rocks. It turned out that it was too small for any plants, so her father gave her a scrap of pond liner from when he built his pond (it seems to run in the family!). About 2'x4', this water garden was able to hold a water lily, some other aquatic plants, and a little fish to eat the mosquito larvae. The sisters loved it, but it was too small for many sisters to congregate by. Unfortunately, the raccoons also loved it and tore apart the plants as they fished for snails and caught the little fish. The little water garden was just too vulnerable to the masked bandits!
When the time for sister's Solemn Profession rolled around, friends, family, and benefactors decided to donate money and supplies for sister to expand the water garden as a profession gift. The water garden was expanded to 8'x10' with a depth of 3'. Sr. Mary Magdalene, Sr. Joseph Maria, and our volunteer Luis all helped dig. Clay soil full of rocks does not make for easy digging! Before the liner could be installed, Sr. Maria Teresa and Sr. Mary Magdalene draped old carpet pieces, blankets, and sand to cover the hole as a protection for the liner. When the heavy liner was finally installed and filled with water the stone work began. A drainage 'stream', flagstone pathways, and landscaping completed the project.
A few goldfish from the pond of sister's father took care of any mosquito larvae. A solar powered water pump was used to keep a hole in the ice all winter, and all the fish survived! The water garden is now home to a few goldfish, plus their numerous tiny offspring (both last year's and this year's!), a tadpole, some snails, boatmen, water striders, daphnia, and plenty of other water creatures.
These days the water garden is a favorite spot for recreation as well as for meditation, and Sabina is delighted with her new "water bowl".