Jamestown’s front yard gardens are springing to life, filling neighborhoods with eye-catching textures and colors. To acknowledge the value that these gardens and their caretakers add to the city, the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation (JRC) is continuing the GROW Jamestown Front Yard Garden Recognition Program for a sixth straight year.
“The GROW Jamestown Front Yard Garden Recognition Program is a way to acknowledge home gardeners who contribute to the curb appeal of Jamestown’s neighborhoods—and to encourage all residents to take part in making Jamestown a more beautiful place. This program was not set up as a competition, but was created to encourage pride and acknowledge the efforts made by many of the residents of Jamestown.” said Mary Maxwell, Neighborhood Project Associate at the JRC.
This year’s big change is the canvassing of spring gardens instead of the usual summer gardens. The JRC has been recognizing summer gardens for the past four years.
“Gardens take on a different look at different times of the year. This year we wish to highlight the late spring gardens of June. In 2017, the plan is to highlight the fall gardens,” said Maxwell.
The 12,000 front yards of Jamestown have been divided into 37 sections, with each section containing approximately 325 front yards. 37 volunteer teams have been assigned to cover each section of the city. Each team is comprised of a navigator (the driver), a photographer (to take a photo of the property), and a data entry person to document the process (a list of where the signs were placed).
Between Monday, June 6 and Sunday, June 26, each team will survey their section of the city, determine the “norm” for that section, and then decide which front yard gardens they wish to acknowledge and encourage by bestowing a 2016 yard sign.
“Attractive gardens take time and effort, but they add tremendously to the appearance of homes and entire neighborhoods,” said Maxwell, noting that the program stems from recommendations in the city’s neighborhood revitalization plan. “It’s a signal that people care about their homes and neighborhoods, and it sends a powerful message to neighbors and visitors,” said Maxwell.
The program is a part of GROW Jamestown, a city-wide initiative that promotes gardening as a tool for neighborhood revitalization, healthy living, civic engagement, and the productive reuse of vacant land. Other GROW Jamestown projects include community gardens and an annual Garden Fair and Home Show in April.
“This year’s program is possible because of over 100 volunteers who will canvass our city to find gardens they wish to recognize. Their interest in devoting spare spring time to this project shows the level of enthusiasm that people have for gardening and celebrating Jamestown’s beauty,” said Maxwell. “This project is the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation’s way to say thank you for the color, character and beauty the residents bring to our wonderful city.” Thanks also goes out to the volunteers of the Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) for helping to collate and organize the informational materials.
For more information on GROW Jamestown and the garden recognition program visit the JRC website, at www.jamestownrenaissance.org under Healthy Neighborhoods, or call Mary Maxwell at 664-2477x 224.