Cara Donovan

Cara Donovan's picture

URI Internship Year:

2017

F&ES Graduation Year:

2018

F&ES Degree:

MESc

Cara Donovan is a joint degree masters student at FES and the School of Public Health at Yale. She grew up in Bristol, Rhode Island and graduated from Connecticut College in 2008 with a major in Environmental Studies and Hispanic Studies. Her focus is on improving health and the environment through sustainable food systems. Prior to starting her program at Yale, she worked at CitySeed as a Volunteer & Outreach Coordinator and later as Mobile Market Manager. She looks forward to continuing to work in the New Haven community and learning from the many knowledgeable greenspace volunteers!

Group

Beaver Ponds Park

Orchard Street

Blockwatch 303

White Street

Lenzi Park

Victims of Gun Violence

Greenspace Log

Date Category Photos Group Summary

08/03/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Lenzi Park

Friends of Lenzi Park put the finishing touches on the park clean up before the URI Bus Tour pizza dinner the following night. Volunteers finished clearing the rest of the weeds from the peastone path and watered all the beds along Jefferson Street. About 7 bags of leaves and woody debris were cleared from St John Street sidewalk.

08/02/2017

Social
Social

Beaver Ponds Park

Friends of Beaver Ponds Park gathered for a end-of-season potluck on a rainy Wednesday night at Nan and Bill's home. They celebrated accomplishments and expressed gratitude for the work accomplished and for the support of URI this summer.

08/01/2017

Planting
Planting

Orchard Street

Today the Orchard Street Block Watch worked hard to unload another yard of peastone into the lot to complete the path around their trees. We also planted blue mouse ear hostas along the border of one of the garden beds. Two additional hostas were brought to add to the flower barrel plantings that line this block of Orchard Street. Two neighborhood children joined the regular dedicated volunteers to rake the peastone and pick up litter and debris along the sidewalk outside of the lot.

08/01/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Beaver Ponds Park

Beaver Ponds Park had their last urban oasis workday with the team of Youth@Work interns this afternoon. A few interns continued laying the woodchips on the path inside the deer fence - almost done! Others cleared mugwort, Japanese knotweed, multiflora rose, and other invasives to make room for tree plantings in August. Heaven watered all of the hackberry trees along the javelin field with the watering cart. We finished up the workday with some watermelon which Nan and Bill shared with us.

07/27/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Lenzi Park

Today the Lenzi Park volunteers focused on weeding and maintenance of the stone path through the park. A group of cousins from the neighborhood joined us on their way back from the pool and enthusiastically pulled and raked out the grass and other weeds from the stones. We finished about 1/3 of the path and hope to finish the rest by the bus tour stop next week!

07/26/2017

Planting
Planting

Beaver Ponds Park

Friends of Beaver Ponds Park had their final workday of the season. After Aaron gave his weekly nature talk at the stone circle benches on catalpa seed pods, we spread out along the road to work on several different tasks. Ten perennials were planted today: 4 liatris, 2 cone flowers, 2 red yarrow and 2 yellow yarrow. Nan, Kate, and Frank weeded, planted, mulched and watered a flower garden further down the path near the red gate, an area that usually doesn't get quite as much attention. Lee Jay, Cindy, Judith, and Aaron took out masses of weeds from the blackberry and ninebark bushes. Pam weeded the new flower garden by the entrance to the park while Dana and Chris planted a few perennials across from the circle benches. Patrick picked up trash and then helped Jim and Chris with mulching. Sumi watered for the full two hours as usual and Bill continued to pull out invasives in the pollinator garden. The Park is looking clean and vibrant after many weeks of hard work!

07/25/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Beaver Ponds Park

The Beaver Ponds Urban Oasis got some TLC today from our group leaders and youth crew. One group continued to lay the woodchip path inside the urban oasis. Another group removed garlic mustard and multiflora rose before heading to the other side to take out some aggressive japanese knotweed and phragmites. A few youth workers began to draw an updated map of the urban oasis to keep track of tree and perennial plantings in the space.

07/25/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Orchard Street

The Orchard Street lot is looking beautiful after a yard of peastone was spread around the garden beds. A new neighbor came out to help shovel the stones with the group and is looking forward to using the space!

07/20/2017

Planting
Planting

Lenzi Park

This week the Friends of Lenzi Park added several variegated hostas and a purple coral bell to St John Street side of the park. They also kept up with the weeding and the watering to keep all of the beautiful plants in good shape in the heat. Jerry posted a couple of signs in the park listing the 48 varieties of flowers to be found in the Park and continued to spray the weeds on the peastone path with homemade, non-toxic weedkiller.

07/19/2017

Planting
Planting

Beaver Ponds Park

Huge turnout as usual at the last Friends of Beaver Ponds Park meeting. The group planted 17 perennials: 4 red yarrow, 1 Russian sage and 1 catmint by the kiosk, 4 "pandora's box" day lilies by the blackberry path, and 2 "pow-wow wildberry" at the berm. Sumi and Frank made sure everything was watered. The rest of the group took out piles and piles of mugwort and other invasive plants along the pollinator garden.

07/18/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Beaver Ponds Park

Our Youth@Work crew led by dedicated Urban Oasis co-leader Bill Bidwell came out for their 2nd workday on the site. Several interns spread over 36 square yards of woodchip mulch along the path. Others pulled thorny multiflora rose and other non-native invasive plants from the site. Heaven made sure some of the shrubs and trees were well-watered.

07/18/2017

Planting
Planting

Orchard Street

Beautification of the Orchard Street lot continued this afternoon with more plantings around the tree lilac. Four hostas and 2 purple huechera were planted. Eva made sure the garden was well-watered in the heat today. A neighbor came by to help us clear out a brush pile.

07/17/2017

Planning
Planning

Victims of Gun Violence

The Department of Parks, Recreation and Trees hosted a meeting on Monday evening to discuss a memorial garden for victims of gun violence in New Haven. Over 40 people gathered to hear about the project and discuss a potential location near the corner of West Park & Pendleton. After hearing input from both neighbors and members of the garden project, Parks Director Becky Bombero shared that this would be the first of many meetings before a site is chosen and the project is shovel-ready.

07/15/2017

Planting
Planting

White Street

The Friday White Street workday was postponed due to rain. We met early Saturday morning to spruce up a tree pit on White Street with some vibrant pink yarrow and russian sage.

07/14/2017

Planting
Planting

Blockwatch 303

Blockwatch#303 accomplished an impressive amount of work today. First Bob and Kate joined me to plant a rhododendron in the garden by Chapel & Yale. We then drove over to the Mitchell Library to compost and mulch around the hostas in the beds along the parking lot fence. Pat had donated 12 large beautiful hostas from her garden which had been planted the day before. Bob pruned a dogwood hanging over the fence and Kate planted a couple of additional day lilies in the library courtyard. Kate, Pat, and Evelyn continued weeding and cleaning up the gardens by the courtyard even after I left. Beecher Park is looking beautiful just in time for the Monday summer concert series!

07/13/2017

Planting
Planting

Lenzi Park

Today Lenzi Park's very dedicated volunteers managed to plant 5 day lilies on St John Street before the rain got very heavy. Jerry also made a homemade, nontoxic white vinegar spray to remove some of the weeds on the stone path. Jenny and Jerry made a laminated sign with a list of all the types of flowers to be found in Lenzi Park - 48 and counting!

07/12/2017

Planting
Planting
Friends of Beaver Ponds Park Group Photo

Beaver Ponds Park

Today the Friends of Beaver Ponds Park worked efficiently before the rain came and cut our workday a bit short. We planted 17 perennials in the park: 3 sedums, 4 ‘paprika’ yarrow, 4 cobalt liatris, 3 ‘wildberry pow-wow’ coneflowers, and 3 cornflowers. Pam, Kate and Judy weeded mugwort, spiderwort and other invasive plants by the blackberry path and wildflower garden on Crescent Street. Frank weeded and planted a sedum by the new garden at the berm on Fournier street. Daniel and Patrick hauled mulch to the garden beds and carried away leaf litter and debri. Laura, Dana, James and Rebecca weeded and planted in the expanding berm garden by the sign while Sumi kept up with the watering using the water cart. Nan planted the liatris and Bill tackled some weeds by the Crescent Street bank. The group posed for their annual group photo right before the rainclouds opened up.

07/11/2017

Planting
Planting

Orchard Street

The Orchard Street Clean Up Blockwatch group met today to discuss the content of new signs that will be posted by the end of the season. Members agreed on rules for the space that can be more clearly displayed for the neighborhood. We also planted 4 'blue mouse ear' hostas in the bed along the right side of the lot.

07/11/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Beaver Ponds Park

Youth@Work interns joined us for their first worksite today at the Beaver Ponds Park Urban Oasis. Nan Barto gave a brief tour of the site, pointing out the invasive species we would be removing. The bee balm is looking beautiful in full bloom and filled with bees! We got to work removing mugwort, purple loosestrife, and cherry seedlings. We also added compost and mulch to the struggling spice bushes.

06/30/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Blockwatch 303

Today we continued our compost and mulch routine with Blockwatch303 by Chapel & Yale. We spread a yard of compost and a yard of pine mulch around the perennial beds by the corner that makes for a beautiful entrance to the Westville neighborhood.

06/30/2017

Planting
Planting

White Street

Volunteers on White Street worked hard before the ran came to plant a Japanese tree lilac on their street. The first hour involved removing concrete to form a tree pit with crow bars and sledge hammers. We were lucky to have new neighborhood volunteer Cesar with us today, since he works in the concrete business! Unfortunately the lift gate on the URI truck was broken, so we managed to softly drop the tree into a wheelbarrow filled with soil with the help of URI staff member Matt Viens who has some experience tree-troubleshooting! After filling the pit with new topsoil and compost, we planted the tree lilac in its new home. Three "polaris" coreopsis and 3 russian sage plants were planted around the tree. Cesar's twin boys joined us later on and enthusiastically spread the pine mulch around the pit.

06/29/2017

Planting
Planting

Lenzi Park

Friends of Lenzi Park gathered to spread another 1/2 yard of pine mulch around the park. We also transplanted some hostas that had been discarded in the compost. We'll see if they survive over the next few weeks. Mary planted a hosta on Jefferson Street and added a bee balm under the mural.

06/28/2017

Planting
Planting

White Street

This week we worked on the tree pit in front of the Langley home on White Street. We planted 4 catmint around the tree in between the annuals that Mrs. Langley planted earlier this season. We also added a 2 russian sage plants under the Hawthorn tree to balance out the yellow flowers.

06/28/2017

Planting
Planting

Beaver Ponds Park

Today's workday started with an all-hands-in by the stone benches at the suggestion of a young visiting volunteer Michael. From there the group dispersed to spread woodchips and mulch. Pam took on the triangle by the corner of Crescent & Fournier. Other perennials were planted along the berm and by the blackberry path. Seventeen perennials were planted in total: 3 yellow yarrow, 3 sedum, 3 pink speedwells, 4 russian sage, and 4 day lilies. Volunteers were also busy watering and weeding.

06/27/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Beaver Ponds Park

Today Cindy and I joined Nan and Bill for our first Urban Oasis workday. Nan gave Cindy a tour of the site. We marked the weeds that we will be taking out with our youth interns in July. Cindy and Bill cleared and mulched the path by the entrance. Nan and I used the last 45 minutes or so to pull out mugwort and stickyweed.

06/27/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Orchard Street

Today we spread about 1/2 yard of pine mulch around the garden beds at the Orchard Street lot. Members of the group also weeded and watered. Timmy came with his weed-wacker and cleaned all the edges.

06/23/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Blockwatch 303

Members of Blockwatch303 gathered on a hot and muggy day to clean up the parking lot of the busy corner of Blake St and Whalley Ave. Kate and Pat weeded the day lilies while Lizzy and Semi cleared out sand bags that had been deposited in the lot over winter. We distributed about a half yard of compost and a yard of pine mulch at this site after mulching a few trees by the library courtyard.

06/22/2017

Planting
Planting

Lenzi Park

Today Lenzi Park volunteers distributed 1/2 yard of pine mulch around the park off the pickup truck. Sara and Mary got to work weeding by St John Street. Sara rescued some hostas from the compost to replant in a triangle on St Johns street to replace some of the weeds.

06/21/2017

Planting
Planting

Beaver Ponds Park

We had another productive evening of work on the summer solstice. Eighteen volunteers turned out to water, weed, plant, mulch, and pick up litter. After introductions, Aaron showed the group what ladybug larvae look like, and Anna collected a bunch to release around the gardens. A few new volunteers joined the group in their canoe to pick up trash floating along the edge of the pond. Fourteen perennials and 17 annuals were planted today along the berm at the entrance, the rock garden and the blackberry path. Perennial plantings included: 2 russian sage, 3 yarrow, 3 black-eyed susans, 3 coral bells, 1 liatris, and 2 scabiosa. Six zinnias and 11 cosmos were planted by the entrance sign. Leejay, Frank, and Aaron built beautiful new rock terraces along this garden.

06/20/2017

Planting
Planting

Orchard Street

Today the Orchard Street Clean Up Blockwatch expanded beautification of Orchard Street to a neighboring tree pit. New neighborhood volunteer Shanique planted 3 yellow day lilies and 3 hostas around the London planetree in front of her house. We added topsoil, compost, and mulch to keep the plants happy. Volunteers also planted vinca vines along the fence to fill out the space with a colorful groundcover. Two children in the neighborhood helped with watering all the newly planted perennials. Other tasks included weeding the lot, adding mulch around a few spaces, and completing the tire border around the grill.

06/16/2017

Planting
Planting

White Street

The White Street group planted 2 yellow yarrow and two yellow coreopsis around 2 of the tree pits today. We also knocked on doors to invite neighbors to the tree planting next week.

06/16/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Blockwatch 303

Blockwatch 303 met today to compost and mulch the grounds of Beecher Park. About 1.5 yards of compost and 1.5 yards of pine mulch were distributed around trees and the sculpture garden. Volunteers worked hard to finish up despite the wet weather!

06/15/2017

Planting
Planting

Beaver Ponds Park

06/15/2017

Planting
Planting

Lenzi Park

Friends of Lenzi Park worked a full two hours weeding garden beds and added 9 perennials on Jefferson Street and by the mural. Plantings included 3 purple coral bells, 3 lady's mantle, and 3 pink astilbes.

06/14/2017

Planting
Planting

Friends of Beaver Ponds got to work today planting about 17 perennials and weeding wheelbarrows full of invasives. The group added compost to the new berm garden that connects to the sign at the entrance of the park. They planted drought-tolerant perennials like sedum, Russian sage, and coreopsis by the entrance and more in the rock garden. Volunteers cleared layers of vines, sticky weed, and other growth around & above the Ed Grant Memorial rock garden and in the area to the left of the blackberries. They also pulled out stickyweed, bittersweet, and mugwort from the area on the Crescent St. bank that lies between the grand Catalpa tree and the Fournier St. sidewalk. Other volunteers hauled water from the pond in buckets and the water cart to water our new plants.

06/13/2017

Planting
Planting

Orchard Street

The Orchard Street Clean Up Blockwatch met in the heat to add more beauty and color to their space. They planted to blue hydrangea bushes and 2 pink knockout rose bushes inside the lot. The group also spruced up a tree pit in front of the lot with 2 flowering plantain lily hostas. Ms. Turner added a gold standard hosta to the flower barrel in the curbstrip. A neighbor interested in beautifying the tree pit in front of her house began to prep for planting that will happen next week under the London planetree.

06/12/2017

Planning
Planning

Victims of Gun Violence

The Victims of Gun Violence group had their first planning meetings today to create a memorial garden in New Haven. Officer Jillian Knox, head of Victim Services Unit hosted the meeting in a conference room at the New Haven Police Department. Marlene Pratt has been hard at work for the past couple of months sketching her garden idea, contacting various city agencies, and spreading the word to loved ones of victims of gun violence in New Haven. Mothers and spouses of homicide victims gathered around a large table to discuss the mission of the garden project and what they envision for the space. They agreed that some of that the space be peaceful, serene, safe, and of course beautiful and colorful. The discussion shifted to the pros and cons of potential locations. Ultimately the group decided to pursue a site by Edgewood Park by West Park Ave & Pendleton St. They will hold their next meeting at this site along with New Haven Department of Parks, Recreation and Trees.

06/09/2017

Planting
Planting

White Street

The White Street group had their first meeting of the summer. We started out with planting additional perennials under the 2 street trees planted last year: 2 yellow yarrow plants, 2 catmint, 1 "moonbeam" coreopsis. The group looks forward to further beautifying their street by planting another flowering tree this month.

06/09/2017

Planting
Planting

Blockwatch 303

Blockwatch 303 had a very productive workday! We planted 2 new trees in Beecher Park: a saucer magnolia and a horse chestnut. These flowering trees will add even more beauty to this space that's very well-cared-for!

06/08/2017

Planting
Planting

Lenzi Park

Today was a very efficient and productive workday at Lenzi Park! The group got to work weeding the beds on Jefferson Street and planting 4 hostas to fill out the space. They also planted 3 black-eyed susans. We then gathered to discuss what other perennials could be added to the space, especially under the mural.

06/07/2017

Planting
Planting

Beaver Ponds Park

I met with Friends of Beaver Ponds Park for their first workday of the summer today. I was really impressed with how much work they accomplished in 2 hours! The group weeded the beds by the Beaver Ponds Park sign and managed to clear a new space for planting by the entrance to the park. About a 1/2 yard of compost and several wheelbarrows full of mulch were laid in preparation for planting in the coming weeks. The group planted 3 blackeyed susans, 3 moonbeam coreopsis or "tickweed", 4 cornflowers, and one catmint in various locations by the entrance. Other members tended to the pollinator garden while a small group cleared litter on the trail by the edge of the water.

06/06/2017

Planting
Planting

Orchard Street

Today we added a few perennials to the garden beds at the Orchard Street lot. Volunteers dug through rocky soil to plant 3 variegated hostas and spiderwort in the space. We also finished clearing out the large brush pile in the back of the lot.

06/02/2017

Planning
Planning

Beaver Ponds Park

I met with the Beaver Ponds Park Urban Oasis group today to tour the site and discuss plans for the summer. We checked on the health of native plants planted last year and updated the map of plantings. We will be taking out more invasive plants and adding more native perennials to the space.

06/01/2017

Planting
Planting

Lenzi Park

Friends of Lenzi Park had a productive workday. They removed 4 bags of leaves from the raspberry bushes and from the perennial beds at the base of 2 oak street trees on St John Street. They planted 3 daylilies around one of the street trees to add more beauty and color to the space.

05/31/2017

Planning
Planning

Beaver Ponds Park

Friends of Beaver Ponds Park gathered for pizza and planning for the summer season. They discussed goals for 2017 and were brought up to date on happenings at Beaver Ponds Park.

05/30/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance

Orchard Street

Members of the Orchard St Clean Up Blockwatch met today in spite of the rain and cleared a large pile of brush from their lot. They also completed the brick edging along their garden beds.

05/26/2017

Planning
Planning

Blockwatch 303

Blockwatch 303 had their first planning meeting of the summer. We checked the health of the park and street trees and decided on replacing 2 dead trees at Beecher Park. We will be planting a saucer magnolia and a horse chestnut in their place. We will also be adding more compost and mulch to the grounds to spruce up the perennial beds.

05/25/2017

Planning
Planning

Lenzi Park

Members of the Friends of Lenzi Park group met to discuss plans for the summer. The group will continue to beautify the park by adding more perennials to the Jefferson Street beds and around the base of the oak trees on St John Street. They will also devote some time to removing invasive plants and weeds around the park.

05/23/2017

Maintenance
Maintenance
Orchard St clean up blockwatch
Orchard St

Orchard Street

Members of the Orchard Street Clean Up Blockwatch met and cleaned out 21 bags of leaves along with some litter from their lot. After filling the URI truck with the leaf bags, the group met and discussed the goals for the season.