Making a Difference in the Community

Jun 14th, 2019

Feed More Receives A New Herb Garden

The Garden is full of beautiful landscapes, blossoming flowers, art installations and small wildlife. It is beautiful year round and always offers something new to engage with. However, one of the most amazing areas of the Garden is the Kroger Community Kitchen Garden. This time of the year it’s bustling with visitors, horticulturists, volunteers and school […]

Read More
Jun 5th, 2019

Special Events Are Going GREEN!

Weddings aren’t always white. Sometimes they’re green. Rehearsal dinners, baby showers and other celebrations are trending green, too. Going green has little to do with color. It’s the concept of planning events that are special, yet environmentally sustainable. “More venues are offering eco-friendly options,” said Lindsay Condelli, assistant facility events coordinator at Lewis Ginter Botanical […]

Read More
May 17th, 2019

GRTC Grows Greener

The passenger platforms for PULSE, the GRTC bus rapid transit system, have been touted for their innovative architecture. Their landscape designs merit kudos, too. The largest planting is little more than 6 to 10 feet wide. However, the 26 stations are situated along a high-profile corridor between Willow Lawn and Rocketts Landing. Creating each station’s […]

Read More
Dec 28th, 2018

Sowing Seeds of Wellness

“Addiction is not a choice,” said Carolyn Seaman, director of development for the Richmond Behavioral Health Foundation (RBHF). “It is a powerful disease.” Seaman, who has 12 years of related experience, said no one chooses to compromise their health or lose their livelihood and home due to substance abuse. Nor do they choose to alienate […]

Read More
Dec 17th, 2018

A World Away: A Partnership with World Pediatric Project

Imagine: You are very sick….a young child in a new country, without your parents. You may or may not speak the language. You are hundreds, if not thousands, of miles from home. You have left everything you know behind.  You have come here for one reason: to get well. It is a leap of faith. Only […]

Read More
Dec 5th, 2018

Fran Purdum: A Legacy

When I came across this sweet garden during a parent-teacher conference at JR Tucker High School I felt warm energy fill my heart as I realized that this grassy area is dedicated to my friend Fran Purdum, who served as Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden’s volunteer archivist starting in 1984 when she retired as a science teacher […]

Read More
Nov 26th, 2018

Our Changed Climate

I remember three things vividly from high school chemistry in Bozeman, Mont.: a terrible walk in December 1972 from home to school for a 6:30 a.m. lab with the temperature at 20 below zero; organic chemicals smelling as bad as promised; and the teacher, a veteran with a crew cut, promising the world we students […]

Read More
Nov 9th, 2018

Community Plants Humanity

A vacant lot on St. Peter Street blighted the Gilpin Court neighborhood for decades. Overgrown grass invited debris. The location supported crime. Most residents paid little attention to the lot until Lillie A. Estes recognized its potential as an urban orchard and garden. “When Mayor Dwight Jones came into office, I heard about his community […]

Read More
Aug 10th, 2018

A Hands-on Learning Day in the Garden

The wonder and beauty of Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden never cease to amaze me each time I visit. But sometimes, I need to remind myself to slow down and take in the smaller details around me. Rushing along the Lotus Bridge or the Main Garden Walk means I’ll miss creatures in the water and new […]

Read More
Aug 7th, 2018

Growing Food for Those in Need

People right here in Central Virginia struggle with hunger every day. The populations most likely to be affected by hunger, children and the elderly, may have trouble not only getting enough food but getting the right kind of food  — fresh locally grown vegetables and fruits. The Kroger Community Kitchen Garden is working to change that. […]

Read More
Jul 18th, 2018

Life-Changing Experiences for Youth

At age 15, Kendra Norrell interned in the Children’s Garden. She recalls “dealing with dirt, plants, and bugs,” than advancing to cataloging plants. As the first high school participant in the Partnership for the Future collaboration (2005), Kendra didn’t expect her internship to repeat two more summers — and she certainly didn’t expect it to […]

Read More
Jul 5th, 2018

Grassroots Urban Gardener

Cucumbers. Tomatoes. Strawberries and collards. Big plans are underway to infuse the community garden at Peter Paul Development Center (PPDC) in Church Hill. Lakeshia Allen, a former engagement coordinator at PPDC and a Ginter Urban Gardener graduate says, “I wanted residents who live here to buy into this garden by creating the list of what […]

Read More
Jun 26th, 2018

Making Space

The young man in duck trousers and a company shirt had just finished off-loading the last of four ball-and-burlap pin oaks. As he busied himself latching up the tailgate of his truck, he chided me, “Remember, don’t put a dollar tree in a nickel hole.” I have heard this admonition many times over the years. […]

Read More
Jun 18th, 2018

Job Skills Take Root

It’s 8:15 a.m. Like many 18-year-olds, Tristin Compton would love to spend his morning listening to music or watching videos on his iPad. Yet he also yearns for independence and a meaningful job. So, reminded of these goals, he boards a van that transports him to Lewis Ginter. On arrival, he clocks in and pins […]

Read More
May 28th, 2018

Therapeutic Horticulture

Most of us can attest to the positive effects that nature in general and Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, in particular, has on our minds, bodies, and souls. The Therapeutic Horticulture program that Lewis Ginter hopes to launch would unearth this healing effect on populations that lack routine access to the Garden or any safe space […]

Read More
Apr 12th, 2018

Servant Leader
Randee Humphrey

The leadership team at Lewis Ginter is as varied as you think it might be, given all the diverse things the Garden does to connect people through plants for the benefit of RVA.  I am privileged to serve alongside remarkable individuals who support and inspire our teams in thoughtful and passionate ways. One has shepherded […]

Read More
Mar 22nd, 2018

Connecting People Through Plants

Although they’ve only known each other for two days, 16-year-olds Honoka Sato and Olivia Appelrouth have become fast friends. Sato, a Japanese exchange student from Municipal Urawa High School (Saitama, Japan) and Appelrouth, her host student, and a sophomore at Clover Hill High School, say they have learned much from each other already. Appelrouth explains […]

Read More
Mar 12th, 2018

Foodscaping

About a decade ago, Brie Arthur won a Yard of the Year award for her home landscape. That’s not unusual since she’s a professional horticulturist. What was surprising was the design. Apparently, her North Carolina homeowners’ association hadn’t noticed her “foodscaping” — planting various vegetables and herbs planted in plain sight, alongside ornamental shrubs and […]

Read More
Mar 4th, 2018

Therapeutic Horticulture: Soothing the Heart, Mind & Soul

Social workers are unique: we operate from the knowledge that a person’s overall well-being depends greatly on the conditions of his or her environment. The impact of nature and experiences out-of-doors are often under-valued in my field and many others.  Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden— where nurturing the mind, body, and spirit is a constant, enduring […]

Read More
Feb 12th, 2018

Gardens Grow Community and More

10 steps for making your own urban garden in Richmond A vacant lot, neighborhood square and school courtyard have something in common. All have potential to be transformed into vibrant community gardens. Duron Chavis readily recognizes the possibility, having launched 12 community gardens in urban areas of Richmond and Petersburg. “None of this is new, […]

Read More
Jan 3rd, 2018

Digging Deep with Urban Gardening

I entered into the Ginter Urban Gardeners program with a deep affection for the term urban and wanting to learn more about sustainable gardening practices.  Ultimately, I was seeking to make a difference in my community. I have certainly gained much knowledge in the ways of growing plants with respect for the earth and its […]

Read More
Dec 31st, 2017

Gardening with Ginter Urban Gardeners

Making a Difference One Garden at Time The day I decided to browse the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden website beyond the home page felt very serendipitous. Inspired by the recent Garden Times newsletter that arrived in my mailbox, I decided to reacquaint myself with the Garden. As I browsed, I stumbled across information on the Urban […]

Read More
Sep 15th, 2017

Urban Greening for Youth

Urban Greening for the Future: Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden – Groundwork RVA Partnership Empowers Youth to Transform Richmond. Urban greening: “I want to make a difference in the community,” said DarQuan, a rising senior at Huguenot High School, about urban greening. DarQuan is one of the nine students participating in the Sustainable Landscape Management Program, a collaborative […]

Read More
Aug 25th, 2017

Butterfly Garden Pro!

For this month’s blog I’d like to demonstrate how simple, straight-forward, and fun creating a butterfly garden is. I asked around the horticulturist’s lunch table to find out who among them ranks as a butterfly gardening expert. I’m glad I did, because Senior Horticulturist Shannon Smith is a butterfly gardening pro and plants specifically to support our native pollinators both here at Lewis Ginter […]

Read More