WINTER 2007                               water, land, life.

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Community Garden Program Blossoms in 2007

A strong volunteer turnout for the fall flower pull-out marked the end of a very successful 2007 Community Gardens and Greenspace program.

Volunteers of all ages worked hard to put the community flower gardens “to bed” for the winter. All annuals are now removed, plastic mulch and drip irrigation tape are lifted, and the beds are raked smooth to withstand winter’s weather. During the pullout, many passersby stopped to shout,
“Thanks! We love the gardens!” or waved or honked to show their appreciation.

In 2007, the garden program received several unique contributions that not only support our work, but also honor special people and events. For example, a young woman called recently to ask if there was a way to honor her stepfather, a 35-year veteran of the steel industry, on his birthday. She has pledged a gift from funds raised among family and friends, so that during the 2008 spring planting, a garden banner will recognize her stepdad in the neighborhood where her family lived
for years.

In her note to WPC, the young woman said, “My step-dad and his brother were so touched and thrilled. Thank you for all your hard work. Your group makes such a difference in our city and now in my family as well.”

WPC also was approached by the national Professional and Organizational Development Network in Higher Education, which held its annual national meeting in Pittsburgh this year. This organization sought a more memorable alternative to the usual small gifts provided to members during conferences. They hit upon the idea of supporting the gardens, and presented WPC with a generous gift. To celebrate, WPC provided a colorful slideshow of images from past plantings and pullouts, so that the participants at the conference could see how their organization’s support would be used. WPC also gave each participant information about the program that emphasized youth involvement and the community training that WPC incorporates into the gardens program.

It is thoughtful gifts like these, unusual and yet tremendously valuable, that help WPC sustain 140 gardens in 19 counties. If you have any questions about how to lend a hand, financial or otherwise, contact the Community Gardens and Greenspace Program at 412-586-2324 or email