The Hartling Family Rose Garden Story
Taking Time to Smell the Roses
An eye-catching rose garden at
FVTC’s Appleton campus is attracting visitors thanks to a collaborative student
project and longtime friend of the college.
beautiful new rose garden near Entrance 3 at FVTC’s Appleton campus is a living
memorial to a very special man. “Bill Hartling was a dear friend to Fox Valley
Technical College,” says Jim Beard, FVTC’s lead Horticulture instructor and
landscape architect. Bill’s wife and FVTC retiree, Jeanne, approached Beard shortly after Bill’s passing in December
of 2009. She said Bill wanted the college to have his roses.
Master Rosarian and the go-to guy for any and all questions about roses, had a
wonderful collection of more than 200 roses. With the college administration’s
blessing, Beard met with local rosarian Carl Christenson and Horticulture
Technician student Vickie Bartman to plan and design a rose garden.
the designated spot was grass-covered and a former fill site laden with rubble,
rock and different soils, Beard’s students spent all of May excavating planter
beds and filling them with layers of topsoil and composted horse manure.
Students then lifted, transported, and transplanted Hartling’s rose collection,
a task made more difficult by unseasonably high temperatures and an excessive
amount of rain that month. A trickle irrigation system and fertilizer attachment
were added so the roses could be automatically watered and fed at the same time.
FVTC Horticulture students did all of the on-site work, which included
laying the brick work for walkways and patios, as well as constructing two
arbors, a pergola, a porch swing, and a lattice trellis. FVTC’s Automated
Manufacturing Systems program and the Production Welding program in Oshkosh
combined forces to create the two stainless steel signs and the patio's
Bartman, 52, whose background is in design and art
direction, threw her “whole heart and soul” into the project. In addition to the
landscaping-related projects, she worked with other students to create and
assemble nameplates for all the roses, and more. “Roses were Bill’s passion for
over 30 years,” she says. “I wanted to be part of honoring Bill’s memory, his
legacy, and the generosity of the Hartlings’ contribution to the
Beard couldn’t be happier with the final result. “The rose
garden is one of those places where you can go to reflect, smell the roses, and
recharge your batteries,” he says. He cannot praise his students enough for
their achievement. “The finest thing this garden
represents is the quality and dedication of Fox Valley Tech students,” he
says. “It’s because our students work across department lines to form
partnerships that we are able to accomplish these kinds of projects.”