Magazine article American Forests

The People's Garden Project

Magazine article American Forests

The People's Garden Project

Article excerpt

As we celebrated the 200th birthday of President Abraham Lincoln, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack established the People's Garden Project

The event included a groundbreaking ceremony on the grounds of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which will turn 1,250 square feet of plain pavement into a community garden. The name for the project comes from Lincoln himself, who founded the Department of Agriculture and referred to it as "the people's department."

The project aims to eventually create such a garden at every USDA facility in the world, serving as a role model for green building and landscaping as well as conservation. This first garden, in eliminating so much pavement, decreases the amount of impervious surfaces, which in turn improves watershed health, a crucial issue in the Chesapeake Bay region.

It is located across from the USDA Farmer's Market and will serve as an example of backyard conservation practices that any American household can implement.

During the groundbreaking ceremony, Vilsack remarked, "It is essential for the federal government to lead the way in enhancing and conserving our land and water resources. …

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