Monday, December 22, 2014

Briggs Ave. Community Garden Wraps Up $10,000 Grant Project

Christmas came early this year for Durham's Briggs Avenue Community Garden with a September $10,000 grant from Keep Durham Beautiful and Lowe's Community Partners.
Volunteers inspect the pavilion after construction last week.
The roof remains to be added.
Photo by the Durham Co. Extension Master Gardeners.
Double height plots were constructed to assist owners
with mobility challenges.
Photo by the Durham Co. Extension Master Gardeners.
The Briggs Avenue Community Garden broke ground in 2010 as a Durham County NC Cooperative Extension health initiative to educate and provide real estate for fruit and vegetable gardening for Durham families. The Briggs Ave. Community Garden has been steadily expanding its public resources each year with financial support and sweat equity from hundreds of volunteers from over 40 Durham organizations, including the Durham Council of Garden Clubs. In four years, over 55 families have grown more than 50 types of fruits and vegetables and harvested 7,000 pounds of produce valued at $14,000.

The recent $10,000 grant was disbursed from Lowes Community Partners to Keep Durham Beautiful, for a third year of Lowe's supported community improvements administered by KDB. Local Lowe's employees, called "Lowes Heroes" worked with Durham County Cooperative Extension personnel, Extension Master Gardeners and community volunteers this fall in constructing various resources, including last week's erected pavilion. So far, the grant project has logged over 380 volunteer hours.

The grant full project list included:
  • Create a 400-square foot mortared brick patio with lighting, fans, seating and cooking stations for public use in demonstrations and community gatherings
  • Develop a vineyard with grapes and blueberries to teach vineyard cultivations and management for the community
  • Create accessible raised gardens beds for plot owners with limited mobility
Groups particularly vital to the success of the community garden include:  Briggs Ave. Community Gardeners, Durham Tech students and staff, Durham County General Services, NC North Carolina Cooperative Extension, Durham Co. Extension Master Gardener volunteers, Keep America Beautiful, Lowe's Home Improvement Heroes, Durham Garden Forum, and the Durham Council of Garden Clubs.

To volunteer for more construction projects at the Briggs Avenue Community Garden, please contact the Durham County Cooperative Extension Master Gardener Volunteers at 919.560.0528 or

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