Cave sprucing up
Published: Thursday, November 15th, 2012
Even though the tourists have left for the most part and the elevators were down for the better part of the month, work has continued at a furious pace at Jewel Cave National Monument.
Park staff have used the down time to do landscaping, prepare new exhibits and do other maintenance work that normally can’t be done during the hustle and bustle of the summer.
The focus last week was landscaping around the visitors center, a project 40 years in the making. When the building was constructed in 1972, the landscaping was designed, but lack of funding prevented it from being completed or maintained. That led to the landscaping looking “pretty ratty,” said Jewel Cave superintendent Larry Johnson.
After the original landscaping design was discovered recently, monument staff decided to restore the landscaping to what it was intended to look like. They enlisted the help of Jeff Prior at Dakota Greens.
“Jeff went to bat for us,”âï¿½ï¿½said Bradley Block, Jewel Cave’s chief of interpretation. “He worked hard to get the native plants for the landscaping that are being used—the exact species that were called for.”
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