WVSU's Carroll Terrace Community Garden Celebrates 11 Years

Contact: Kimberly Osborne
(304) 766-3363
May 13, 2015
WVSU's Carroll Terrace Community Garden Celebrates 11 Years
INSTITUTE, W.Va. – West Virginia State University (WVSU) Extension Service will celebrate the 11th growing season of its community garden at Carroll Terrace, a Charleston-Kanawha Housing residential facility, with a spring planting event Friday, May 15, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Carroll Terrace residents and WVSU Extension Service staff members will plant a variety of fruits and vegetables, including tomatoes, green beans, carrots, strawberries and several other crops. The project began more than a decade ago with the goal of helping residents eat better and save money by growing and harvesting their own healthy crops. Today, the residents’ passion for the garden is evident.

"In the beginning, we at WVSU were very hands-on with garden management and education to the residents," said Melissa Stewart, assistant program director of WVSU Extension Service. "Now we're here for events like this, but garden management is left entirely in the hands of our resident gardeners."

The garden, initially an $80,000 project, features 40 raised-bed plots for accessibility, as well as four community plots, container gardens, an herb garden and benches and décor to serve as a relaxing space for participants, who have taken great pride in the project over the years.

For many people, the added benefit of growing and consuming their own crops has helped ease financial burdens.

"So many of these residents are elderly or in poor health with minimal income," said Debbie Knox, a Carroll Terrace resident and the garden's on-site manager. "I've heard over and over that, thanks to being able to grow their own vegetables, they don't have to choose between eating healthy and buying their medicine."

Knox assists with assigning plots to residents, keeping the garden tidy and coordinating events such as the garden's annual Halloween and Christmas festivities.

Carroll Terrace is located at 1546 Kanawha Blvd. East in Charleston. The garden is near the facility's Virginia Street entrance, between Elizabeth Street and Ruffner Avenue.

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West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multigenerational institution, located in Institute, W.Va. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.
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