Communities that want to be seen as welcoming and vibrant places to live, work, and play benefit greatly from gardens filled with beautiful plants and trees enhancing both public and residential spaces. Beautification adds value to a town. It enhances the sense of pride in the community and makes public spaces feel more welcoming. Residents are more likely to shop in more welcoming commercial areas, so beautification enhances the economic vitality of a municipality.
“A beautiful town elicits pride among its residents and helps build community.” That was our focus during our 2016 recertification effort and remains our strong commitment still. Participants of our 2014/2015 Community Visioning felt that Ewing would benefit from some beautification efforts and we agreed. We have since worked on numerous municipal plantings, cleanups, and building a community of homeowners interested in beautification through our garden tour.
Latest efforts in the Beautify Ewing Campaign include the March and April 2019 Shabakunk Creek and rain garden cleanups, and a 2018 cleanup at the Johnson Trolley Trail. In the spring of 2018, Ewing Green Team and Environmental Commission volunteers planned and planted a stunning garden using native plants at the Ewing Senior and Community Center (ESCC). That work continues as we have just been notified that we’ve received a grant to plant a pollinator garden at the front entrance.
The Through the Garden Gate Tour of Ewing is now in its fifth year. Our 2018 tour featured 19 gardens and highlighted National Wildlife Federation and North American Butterfly Association certified gardens. This year’s tour was run the weekend of June 22 and 23. Detailed planning and sourcing of gardens in the community are strengthening civic connections and partnerships while emphasizing our theme of beautification. We now start the tour at the ESCC where our pollinator garden thrives to educate tour goers about the benefits of native plantings.
Our partnerships are also expanding. We hope to have a nature-themed art installation to add to the appeal of the newly funded pollinator garden and the Arts Community also participated in the 2019 Tour with artists “en plein air” at selected gardens. Our 2016 hope was that the tour would serve as an “engine of economic development and civic pride” a la Garden Walk Buffalo. Our community of gardeners is growing, and we continue to reach out to residents and businesses for more substantial beautification efforts. Community pride and opportunity for environmental awareness and education are sure to follow this very worthwhile effort.
For more information about our tour go to our Garden Tour page.