One rose at a time

A fundraising tea will help maintain the rose garden at FRHP

Fraser River Heritage Park gardener Sandie Zdunich has been tenderly caring for the roses in the Ernest Jacobsen Rose Garden for four years. A tea being organized for this weekend will help raise funds needed to maintain this memorial garden.


The flowers in the Ernest Jacobsen Rose Garden at Fraser River Heritage Park are in full bloom and a fundraiser being held this weekend will help keep the perennial plants producing.

There is so much to do in there, said gardener Sandie Zdunich, who adds she could spend all day working in the rose garden if she didn’t have to tend to the other flower beds around the 40-acre park.

Since she began caring for the roses four years ago, Zdunich has had a hand in the development of every flower. She has tenderly cared for the struggling bushes, replaced the roses that didn’t survive since being moved there in 2001, weeded the beds and replaced the soil.

She has plans to fix the edging, take out the fencing, build a water feature, and turn it into a destination for weddings and other special events.

“The rose garden is up for rent, like the rest of the park,” said Zdunich, who hopes to raise $20,000 this year to meet her target.

This is the fourth year a tea has been organized to help maintain the roses, but you can also donate money to the Mission Heritage Association and have it earmarked for the garden.

Volunteers are also needed to help maintain the flowers.

The rose garden is located on the south side of the park’s administrative building. It was established 12 years ago after Jacobsen’s family donated 300 of Ernest’s rose bushes after his death. His wife, Rhona, still visits the garden whenever she can.

The Rose Garden Tea is being held July 14 from 2 to 4 p.m. at Fraser River Heritage Park. There will be music and entertainment, and tea, coffee and light refreshments. Tickets to the event are $10 each and are available at the park’s administration office or by calling 604-826-0277.

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