HOLLIS Garden, continued from pg. 13
Winter Haven’s Becky Scholten was married in the garden 15 years ago on Nov 23, 2001. “Bryan proposed to me the year before (Dec 24, 2000) on Lake Mirror,” she says.
“It was a special area to us for that reason, and therefore that was a major factor in choosing the gardens. It was and still is such a gorgeous place. The flowers, fountains, ponds and the lake in the background was very picturesque. We even recently did our 15-year anniversary photos and family photos at the gardens again and recreated some pictures.” Left: Two swans are part of the Hollis Garden boundary, which flanks Lake Mirror near downtown Lakeland. The swan is the official mascot for the City of Lakeland. Opposite page: An ornamental fountain in Hollis Gardens stretches for several feet.
March / April 2017
The gardens are an asset to the city of Lakeland, as close to a botanical garden as one can get without employing scientists, Smith says. “As an asset to the city, the garden is an educational tool to introduce different plant species to the community,” says Pam Page, the deputy director of parks and recreation for the City of Lakeland. “It gives people ideas and color juxtaposition and different ways of doing things. They might say, ‘I don’t think I can grow orchids at home,’ and then come here and see how we have them in the trees and realize they can do it.” Page is pleased with the legacy the Hollis family has given the city of Lakeland. In addition to the initial $1 million, the Hollises also put $500,000 of Publix stock into a perpetual care fund for the garden, and the fund has nearly reached selfsustainability on interest. “The city would have never had the funds to do this,” she says. “It was a wonderful gift.”
Published on Mar 10, 2017
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