�Secret Gardener� helps out her friends and neighbors

Good Samaritan puts green thumb to good use

By PATTI SELLS | News-Telegram Feature Writer

Sept. 2, 2007 - Since the beginning of spring, several residents in the vicinity of Colorado and Longino streets have awakened in the morning to find their bushes trimmed, weeds plucked and roses pruned, thanks to a secret gardener living in their midst. 

Staff Photo by Patti Sells

It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood thanks to good neighbors like Jackie Daehn who enjoys doing yard work so much that she does it for neighbors before they even wake up.

"I'm not much of a secret any more," said Jackie Daehn, who has lived in the neighborhood for 18 years. "I worked for 25 years, and never had much of a chance to be a good neighbor."

Now semi-retired, Daehn said she enjoys waking up just before dawn, and with her bug spray and boxes in hand, she sets out to do yard work for those who may need a little extra help. 

"A little lady who lives next door is a widow, a single mom lives behind me, and a man with one leg lives across the street," she explained. "I just go whereever stuff needs to get done and they can't do it for whatever reason."

Whether its picking up sticks, pulling weeds or edging the sidewalk, Daehn. who lives on the corner of Colorado and Longino streets said she loves being outside and working in the yard.

"I don't really have a green thumb, I just have patience to pull weeds," she said with a laugh. "I'm an early riser and just try to get out and beat the sun. It beats the heck out of sitting in front of the computer or television all day. It just feels good to do something for others."

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