La Crosse, Wis. (WXOW) — La Crosse is taking a step forward in honoring another sister city. Officials broke ground on Thursday morning for the Cameroon Garden in the Riverside International Friendship Gardens.
The City of La Crosse started a relationship with Kumbo, Cameroon through religious connections formed by the Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration.
The Cameroon Garden will be the seventh garden in the Riverside International Friendship Gardens.
It was a frigid ground breaking ceremony for the garden that honors a nation located close to the equator. Members of Riverside International Friendship Gardens say the climate and soil differences will make growing plants native to Cameroon in La Crosse difficult.
“This garden will be unique, because it will focus on sculptures,” said Chuck Hanson, President of Riverside International Friendship Gardens. “Sculptures that will capture certain elements of their culture. Now, there will be plenty of gardens, plenty of color. It will capture the colors you see in Africa, but obviously we can’t duplicate the plants.”
Hanson hopes to have the planting finished by spring of 2019. The goal is to have the Cameroon Garden open to the community by summer of 2019.
Hanson says the Riverside International Friendship Gardens have been made possible by contributions from the community. He hopes to see the fundraising continue to make sure the Cameroon Garden can open as scheduled.
There are multiple ways for individuals, groups, and businesses to give. Those interested in donating can call 608-791-GROW (4769) or visit www.riversidegardens.org. Checks can be mailed to Riverside International Friendship Gardens, Inc. at P.O. Box 3473, La Crosse, WI 54602-3473.
Hanson says there is a discussion about adding a Wisconsin Garden in the future that honors Native Americans.