When I took the above picture I thought that the conservatory had been there since the house was built. In fact it’s almost brand new (opened June, 2017) and hadn’t even existed during my last visit (March, 2015).
I’ll summarize the history of the conservatory with a few extracts from the park’s website:
In 1991, a very dedicated and loving plant pathologist named Ilse Biedermann took her love of horticulture and brought it to Lasdon Park. Devoting herself to helping to develop Lasdon Park & Arboretum during its’ infancy, she founded “The Friends of Lasdon” and her passion was contagious. Her dream was to build a new larger greenhouse to grow plants and educate children in the world of horticulture.
Tragically in 2005 Ilse Biedermann was taken from us in a car accident on the Taconic Parkway. Although we lost Ilse that day her passion remained with us. In 2007 we took up her dream and began a grass roots fundraising campaign with the help of the Friends of Lasdon.
Almost a decade later The Friends of Lasdon has raised over $700,000 through model train shows, concerts, special seasonal events, sponsor pledges and plant sales. Through an exhausting effort, Friends of Lasdon President Michael Katz, the County Executive’s Office, cooperation of the Westchester County Board of Legislators, and countless others, the dream that started with one woman will become a gift for us all.
September 2016. Since June 3, A-Team has been constructing the foundation, retaining wall, mechanical building, installing drainage and radiant heat lines. On September 3 they finished. Sometime in the latter part of September, Rough Brothers will send in their construction team and complete the Conservatory. We expect it to be completed by the end of December.
October 12 2016. Fenton Construction and Ironworkers from NY Local 40 completed the second leg of the Conservatory on October 12.
This involved the steel frame for the building. The work was finished several days ahead of schedule. On October 13 County Executive Rob Astorino will make a public announcement at 1pm regarding this new glasshouse conservatory.
Oct. 14, 2016 – County Executive Robert P. Astorino yesterday joined other county officials and members of the Friends of Lasdon Park organization to mark the completion of the foundation, a major phase in the construction, for the new 2,500 square foot glass house conservatory, at Lasdon Park, Arboretum and Veterans Memorial in Somers.
January 2017. Rough Brothers sent in their team in late 2016 and are just a few weeks away from completing the glass installation, gutters and trim. That will be followed by another team from Rough Brothers to do all the interior work (heat system, fans, environmental controls and mechanicals) and Westfair Electric will be doing the electrical connections.
In early April, A-Team Contracting will return and complete the new patio with Westfair Electric. We are presently working on the fundraiser set for June 14, a ticketed event followed by the public grand opening on June 17.
The first exhibit will be “Tropical Treasures”. Details will be coming out soon on this exhibit and how you can get tickets to the public grand opening.
June 2017. County Executive Rob Astorino performed the ceremonial “Vine” cutting earlier this afternoon at the brand new Lasdon Park Glass House Conservatory.
Taken with a Sony A77 II and Minolta 50mm f1.7.