Walking the Garden District

A few of us have been canvassing the Garden District the past few weekends, knocking on doors and engaging in conversations with people about our plan. It had been a very positive experience. Not a single person any of us has spoken to has objected to the idea of swapping wildflower gardens for vacant lots. On the contrary, we’ve received lots of support and appreciation for making the effort to revitalize the neighborhood.

This does not mean there are no issues to be resolved. For example, I heard from a couple of people who are concerned with the height of the rye grass but once they understood that it was temporary they were fine with it by the end of the conversation.

Also, two people I spoke with love the idea of the gardens but do not want them in the vacant lot next door to them. Both say they fear a garden would attract “undesirable people;” I don’t really understand the logic behind this thinking, but I was unable to change minds either, so we await a solution to this problem. However, if it is just two lots it will be no problem to just skip them — the neighborhood has plenty of vacant lots to from which to choose.

We still need help

We still need volunteers for Saturday May 11th. We need people to help canvass the proposed Garden District neighborhood for an hour or so early Saturday afternoon. We will canvass in pairs and pass out a brochure to as many houses as we can.

We could also use help selling tee-shirts in Dave Grohl Alley at the Rockin’ Burger Fest ’13 from 3:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m. Of the two, the canvassing is the more important. I can sit and b.s. while selling the occasional tee-shirt for a good many hours, however I would like to have a beer or two and may need occasional “relief.”

If you can help out please send an email to Stephanie, at stephanie@warrenexpressed.org telling her what you can do and when; please also leave your cell number.

Now that’s a BIG check!

TC big checkI always wanted to get one of those big checks — the kind they give golfers when they win the big tournament, and at long last it happened recently when the Trumbull County Commissioners presented us with a gift of nearly $500 that had been collected from county employees. Seen here are (l-r) me and Commissioners Frank Fuda, Paul Heltzel and Dan Polivka.

This was very generous of them and we appreciate it very much. However, I am sorry to report that after the photo was taken they took back the big check and gave me a little, old ordinary version to deposit. Oh well, there is still the U.S. Open.

Volunteers needed

If you support gregg’s gardens, please consider giving us a few hours of your time on Saturday May 11th. We need volunteers between the hours of noon and 10:00 p.m. for whatever time you can spare.

We need help in several areas:

  1. Distributing literature and talking to neighbors in the proposed Garden District from roughly noon until 3:00ish.
  2. Distributing literature and selling tee shirts at the Rockin’ Art Fest 2013 in Dave Grohl Alley for a two-hour shift between 3:00 and 10:00 p.m.
  3. Other glamorous opportunities include helping with the party itself by, for example, serving beer and burgers or helping clean up for a two-hour shift.

The Rockin’ Art Fest 2013 in Dave Grohl Alley is being organized by Main Street Warren and they have generously offered to share the proceeds with gregg’s gardens if we can provide some volunteers. Your help will directly aid the effort to beautify Warren.

If you will help, please send an email to Stephanie@warrenexpressed.org that includes your telephone number and the times you can work; she will be able to answer most questions. We need you. I hope you can step up.

Where are the courts?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWhile we were at Harding we asked students how they would put some of the vacant lots to use. The overwhelming number one choice was “basketball courts.” I grew up a block from old Harding and we practically lived on the outdoor courts there. Today Harding has none, and i do a lot of driving around the city and have seen very few.

Alternative use for lots is something we will be talking about much more later, but a few outdoor courts would be a great place to start. They would give kids a chance to burn off some energy and wouldn’t cost much.

A day at Warren G.

HARDINGMatt Martin and I spent most of the day at Warren G. Harding yesterday and presented the story of gregg’s gardens and the plan to create a Garden District, to six, 12th grade English classes — probably about 100 kids in total.

We left with the names and email addresses of about 40 who expressed interested in participating in some way as yet to be determined; but at minimum these 40 say they will  attend a committee meeting to develop a plan. I count it as a good start.

The “gg mix”

Butterfly_Weed_Asclepias_tuberosa_UmbelWe have received several requests lately asking for the specific seed mixture we use to create a gregg’s garden, including one request from the Ohio Attorney General’s office. We’ve presented it here before but it was a while back. The seed mixture consists of:

Asclepias tuberosa – Butterfly Weed (right)

Schizachyrium scoparium – Little Bluestem

Elymus Canadensis – Nodding Wild Rye (bottom)

Chamaecrista fasciculate – Partridge Pea

Bouteloua curtipendula – Side-oats Grama

Heliopsis helianthoides – Ox Eye Sunflower

Gaillardia pulchella – Indian Blanket

wild_bergamot_3Ratibida pinnata – Yellow Coneflower/Grey-Headed Co

Echinacea purpurea – Purple Coneflower

Coreopsis lanceolata – Lanceleaf Coreopsis

Eryngium yuccifolium – Rattlesnake Master

Monarda citriodora – Lemon Mint

Monarda fistulosa – Wild Bergamot (above)

Rudbeckia hirta – Black-eyed Susan

Penstemon digitalis – Foxglove Beardtongue

Aster novae-angliae – New England Aster

Solidago rigida – Stiff Goldenrod

Lespedeza capitata – Roundheaded Bushclover

nodding wild ryePycnanthemum virginianum – Virginia Mountain Mint

Lobelia siphilitica – Great Lobelia