Donation helps resident blossom at Emerald Meadows


Some of the flowers donated by the Bos family were planted around the flagpole outside Emerald Meadows. The courtyard at the community is also full of donated flowers.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (July 2015) — Beautiful flowers have been blooming all summer at Emerald Meadows, thanks to a generous donation from Bos Greenhouse and Farms.

Cheryl Edge, a foster daughter of Dorothy and the late Bill Bos, Sr., lives at the community. Before he passed away, Bos, Sr., told the family to give Edge – who has been diagnosed with dementia — anything she wanted. And since she had grown up around the flowers and loved the farm, the family decided it would be good for her to see something familiar.

“We thought it would be good therapy for Cheryl,” said Gerald Mercer, whose wife, Deb, was also a foster daughter in the Bos family. “We thought it would be good for the other residents who enjoy flowers, too — it brightens their day.”

Last year, it was Emerald Meadows staff members who filled the grounds with flowers, but this year, they left the job in the capable hands of the Bos and Mercer families.

Gerald and his sisters did much of the planting, using more than 25 flats of donated flowers, in all colors and varieties. This was not the first donation Emerald Meadows received from Bos Greenhouse — they also provided mums and roses in the fall.

“All the credit goes to the Bos family,” Gerald said. “We just wanted to do something for our little sister.”

The greenhouse has also made donations to the fairgrounds in Lowell and to the Ada Kids’ Garden, among others.

“We’ve always donated different places,” said Bill Bos, Jr. “We want everybody to enjoy (the flowers).”

At Emerald Meadows, Mercer and his sisters planted the courtyard and filled in the spaces around the perennials coming up near the flagpole. Edge directed the volunteers on where to put the different flowers, and was able to plant a few planter boxes herself.

Other residents’ families contributed to the garden by bringing hanging baskets to put outside the windows, and Emerald Meadows administrator Chris Trevathan got in on the act by driving over to the greenhouse, buying two large planters for the driveway, and planting those himself.

It was so much fun to work with a family in this way,” Chris said. “Flowers not only brighten the residents’ day, but they also bring back memories of the summer days spent with family and friends.  The appreciation goes beyond words and touches the soul.”

If you’re interested in donating your time or resources to benefit Providence Life Services residents, visit our Make a Difference page.


Other stories about generous residents and friends:

Victorian Village resident donates time as docent at zoo

John Breen honored for years of volunteer work at museum

Elmhurst artist paints mural in honor of Park Place residents



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