EDITORIAL: Positively fleeting

Though the end may be near for a South Surrey community garden, it's positive impact will remain.

Not all good things must come to an end.

But when they do, does that mean they didn’t have an impact?

It would seem that an ending is a real possibility for a garden that has increasingly brightened a busy South Surrey street over the past nine years. Rooted – quite literally – in the dedicated efforts of Adrian Bilodeau, who spent most of his life on the Semiahmoo Peninsula before moving further north in Surrey in September, the garden lines a public parcel of land that stretches along a portion of 156 Street between King George Boulevard and 24 Avenue. Over the years, it has spread into the lot itself, complementing existing trees and blossoming into a parklike space, complete with benches and a wishing well.

Bilodeau estimates he has spent 8,000 hours planting, weeding, seeding and decorating the garden over the years – time that might initially feel like a waste, should the City of Surrey follow through on its expressed intention to sell the lot early next year. Interestingly, the news arrived less than a year after the city essentially acknowledged its worth by granting Bilodeau beautification funds.

Regardless of what the future holds, the reality is good deeds are worth doing – whether they come and go, as with the time it takes to hold a door for a stranger, or they endure for a nearly a decade, as this garden has done.

Bilodeau – who started the garden as a tribute to his father – has many memories of those who have given an appreciative honk and wave as they drive past as he tends the space, and of those who have stopped to chat with him about the garden; of it becoming a place to reflect on loved ones, or somewhere to simply pause from the hustle and bustle of the day to enjoy the flowers and sundry wildlife.

No decision by the city to sell can erase those memories or the good feelings they created.

The world – and in this particular case, the Semiahmoo Peninsula – is a better place for such deeds, regardless of how large or small, how fleeting or enduring. The ripples are farther-reaching than can ever be fully known.

Understandingly, Bilodeau remains hopeful the garden that he started in 2008 will endure. He began appealing to the powers that be last week, and hopes the public will add their voice.

But even if this good thing does come to an end, its impact will not be lost. Those roots, at least, remain firmly planted.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Police responded to a report of a shooting in the 1300-block of 176 Street at around 7:15 p.m. on June 3, 2017. (File photo)
Trial dates set for senior charged in 2017 ‘targeted’ South Surrey shooting

Jury trial for Kenneth Turpin scheduled to begin Oct. 25

Earl Marriott Secondary alumna Tanis Orsetti has received a $15,000 Cmolik Graduate Studies Scholarship to further her studies in the field of medicine. (File/Contributed photo)
Earl Marriott alumna selected for new $15K scholarship

Tanis Orsetti is studying the use immunotherapy in cancer treatment

Eternity Medical Equipment’s ECAN95 masks have received Health Canada approval and CSA certification. (Eternity Medical Equipment photo)
South Surrey N-95 equivalent manufacturer launches mask recycling program

Eternity Medical Equipment partners with Ontario-based LifeCycle Revive

Surrey Fire Service at a garage fire in the 14400-block of 82A Ave on March 22, 2021. (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
‘Perfect storm’ of variants, increasing COVID cases are concerning for Surrey fire chief

Between police and fire, Larry Thomas said there are 8 confirmed cases, 18 others isolating

People take part in an anti-curfew protest in Montreal on Sunday April 11, 2021. Hundreds of people gathered in Old Montreal tonight in defiance of a new 8 p.m. curfew. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Giuseppe Valiante
VIDEO: Hundreds defy Montreal’s 8 p.m. curfew in violent, destructive protest

Quebec reported 1,535 new COVID-19 cases on Sunday, as well as five additional deaths linked to the virus

People walk past the Olympic rings in Whistler, B.C., Friday, May 15, 2020. Whistler which is a travel destination for tourists around the world is seeing the effects of travel bans due to COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Adults living, working in Whistler, B.C., eligible for COVID-19 vaccine on Monday

The move comes as the province deals with a rush of COVID-19 and variant cases in the community

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
UPDATE: RCMP investigating after child, 6, dies at motel in Duncan, B.C.

The BC Coroners Service is conducting its own investigation into the circumstances around the child’s death

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

RCMP display some of the fish seized from three suspects who pleaded guilty to violating the Fisheries Act in 2019, in this undated handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - RCMP
3 banned from fishing, holding licences after overfishing violations near Vancouver Island

Mounties seized the group’s 30-foot fishing vessel and all equipment on board at the time

B.C. Premier John Horgan responds to questions during a postelection news conference in Vancouver, on Sunday, October 25, 2020. British Columbia’s opposition Liberals and Greens acknowledge the COVID-19 pandemic has presented huge challenges for Horgan’s government, but they say Monday’s throne speech must outline a coherent plan for the province’s economic, health, social and environmental future. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Horgan’s NDP to bring in throne speech in B.C., Opposition wants coherent plan

Farnworth said the budget will include details of government investment in communities and infrastructure

FILE - An arena worker removes the net from the ice after the Vancouver Canucks and Calgary Flames NHL hockey game was postponed due to a positive COVID-19 test result, in Vancouver, British Columbia, in this Wednesday, March 31, 2021, file photo. As vaccinations ramp up past a pace of 3 million a day in the U.S, the NHL is in a tougher spot than the other three major North American professional sports leagues because seven of 31 teams are based on Canada. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP, File)
Vancouver Canucks scheduled to practice Sunday, resume games April 16 after COVID outbreak

Canucks outbreak delayed the team’s season by eight games

Most Read