Daire preps a bed for a garden display at TBG.

By Jian Jin, AmeriCorps NCCC member

Over 130 community gardens, eight AmeriCorps NCCC team members and one common goal, to make our people safer, smarter and healthier. Oak 7 has teamed up with the Toledo Botanical Garden to do just that.

The first two weeks the team has assisted with Toledo GROW in redistributing well over 4,000 plants to 63 community gardens in need of them. Plants distributed to the gardens varies from winter squashes to watermelons to tomatoes. Plus an additional of roughly 3,000 plants were donated to the community for their own personal use.

“It was intriguing to see how a garden can really bring a community together into a common goal. To eat healthier, make their community look better and to come together as one big family,” says member Heather from Jacobs Creek, Pennsylvania.

Kevin, Heather & Robin laid down cardboard and mulch for Rosemary plants.

The team also provided a hand in the new theme display for the Botanical Garden. Two 70 feet long beds were weeded, planted, and fertilized just in front of the entrance to the garden for the public’s eye.

While in Toledo, the team had the wonderful opportunity to be working with the Old West End Festival with the tours of Bartley’s Mansion and the Beach House Family Shelter for their individual service projects.

Robin plants some hot pepper plants for local community garden.

During their off time, the team utilized the time to fully understand the different cultures in Toledo as well as the history. Visiting the Glass Museum, Mud Hens baseball game and the Walleyes Hockey games are just a few of many Oak 7 has indulged themselves in.