Tara Striano and Ari Bekian, landscape designers for Salty Roots Garden and Landscape Design, are taking on a different kind of project in town.
The Mattituck residents have plans to beautify the Mattituck train station. Both are enrolled in the Master Gardener program through Cornell Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County, which requires 120 hours of community service, and they thought this would be the perfect opportunity.
“We decided we wanted to donate our time locally to our town,” Ms. Striano said. “Mattituck has been changing over the past few years and why not have the train station look good?”
They were inspired after seeing how other master gardeners had beautified train stations elsewhere on Long Island.
The landscaping duo has designed a garden for the Love Lane station, where they’ll place low-maintenance plantings, bulbs for spring color, evergreens and perennials so the garden can be enjoyed year round.
The Mattituck Chamber of Commerce and Mattituck-Laurel Civic Association have partnered with Ms. Striano and Mr. Bekian to get this project done.
The project will be completed by volunteers but donations are needed for plant material and heavy labor. Donations are accepted through a GoFundMe page on behalf of the Mattituck-Laurel Civic Association, with a goal of $5,000. They will also have a table at the next First Friday, Oct. 5, on Love Lane to raise money.
Once funds are collected, they hope to plant in late October or early November.
The project involves removing and replacing six to eight inches of soil where only chemically treated weeds grow now.
Ms. Striano and Mr. Bekian will be in charge of maintaining the plantings, but will be able to get volunteers who are also in the master gardener program to help take care of it.
“Everything that we’re planting will be low-maintenance, drought tolerant so they shouldn’t need a lot of work,” Ms. Striano said. “They should just be beautiful, green and lush and make you feel really good when you get off the train or go to get on it — or when you drive by even.”
Photo caption: A rendering of the project. (Courtesy photo)