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The Five Points Neighborhood Association has written a press release about a project we recently supported. Read on to find out the impact a few passionate neighbors can make!

Projects like this one are exactly what we want to support with our Home Growing Program! Do you have a home growing or neighborhood project that needs a little help taking flight? Contact our Program and Outreach Coordinator Gillian for information about how to get involved:

June, 2016
Susan McBride:  Five Points Neighborhood Association Sign/Garden Committee Head
Gillian Scruggs: Organic Growers School Outreach and Program Coordinator
Sue Schweikart: Five Points Neighborhood Association President

For Immediate Release

Five Points residents cultivate green space

Asheville, N.C. – Residents of Five Points Neighborhood will cap off a long effort to beautify a busy corner of their neighborhood on Saturday, June 11, as they finish work on a new pollinator garden.

Five Points resident Susan McBride has led the neighborhood association effort to create this garden in the public right-of-way at the intersection of East Chestnut Street, Maxwell Street and Monroe Place. Two years ago the space for the garden was created along with improvements meant to ease the impact of traffic from the new Harris Teeter and Trader Joe’s stores.

“Coming together to work on a project like this benefits not just the neighborhood but everyone who travels through Five Points,” said Sue Schweikart, Five Points Neighborhood Association president, “And there’s also the benefit to our ecosystem from creating a habitat for bees, butterflies and other pollinators.”

“With East Chestnut Street becoming so busy due to development along Merrimon Avenue, green spaces like this are needed more than ever,” said Susan McBride, “And we want to remind drivers on Chestnut that we are a neighborhood of families and not a commercial strip. Hopefully the garden will help slow down some drivers too.”

The plants in the 25′ by 8’ garden have been chosen for their ability to feed and nurture pollinators such as bees, wasps, butterflies, moths, some beetles and even hummingbirds and will include bee balm, daisies, catmint, asters, cardinal flowers, black-eyed susans, gay feather, oregano, lavender, meadow sage, and milkweed.

McBride and neighbor Gillian Scruggs, an Organic Growers School Coordinator and AmeriCorps Service Member, have spent some time designing the plant layout, dealing with soil and drainage issues, and obtaining city approvals. All of the labor and most of the plants, supplies and tools have been donated by members of the neighborhood, or paid for with funds raised from silent auctions of items donated by neighbors and local businesses.

Neighbors will begin planting at 10 a.m. on June 11.

The completion of the Five Points garden comes at a time of growing awareness of the need for sustainable habitats for pollinators, which are vital to feeding the planet. The Bee City USA Pollination Celebration in Asheville will be held June 16-25.



Gillian Scruggs

Author: Gillian Scruggs

Gillian Scruggs is OGS’s first AmeriCorps Project Conserve member. As the Program and Outreach Coordinator, she supports home grower education and coordinates volunteers for the Spring Conference. She comes to OGS from the Alzar School in Idaho and Chile where she was a high school Spanish and AP US History teacher and whitewater kayak instructor. Gillian graduated from UNC Asheville in 2011 with a degree in Spanish, taught experiential science education at Mountain Trail Outdoor School, and worked as the garden assistant for two summers at Mountain Trail’s Educational Garden Center. You are most likely to run into her on the French Broad River, at a farmer’s market, or scrambling around on rocks in Hickory Nut Gorge.

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