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Posted on: September 21, 2017

Richmond Education Gardens Moves Forward - Volunteers Needed

Village of Westmont
Date Issued: Sept. 21, 2017

Since the official groundbreaking on Earth Day, April 22, the Richmond Education Gardens and Apiary project has been steadily moving forward.  Richmond Gardens, located just east of the Township Highway Department Facility at 318 E. Quincy Street in Westmont, is a joint project between the Village of Westmont and Clarendon Hills and will provide an opportunity for citizens to learn about the environment, natural and organic gardening methods, rain gardens, water conservation, and more.  Following are some of the recent updates:

Over the summer, the project received a $10,000 grant from the ComEd Green Region Program, which is administered by the Openlands organization (www.openlands.org).  The grant will be used for a pollinator education initiatives which will teach students and residents about the importance of honey bees and other pollinators in our ecosystem.  

Also, a local colony of bees was rescued by our Village Forester Jon Yeater and then relocated to the Richmond Gardens Apiary.  The apiary currently has two successful hives, and a third hive is developing.

Recently, ComEd’s Vegetation Management Department supported Richmond Gardens by removing weed trees from the site, which will make way for an Eagle Scout project consisting of organizing a weed and vegetation clean-up at the rear of the property, followed by new native plantings. 

Currently, engineering drawings are being created and site grading will occur in October. Architectural plans for the planters, park entry and outside classrooms are also being developed. Most recently we received preliminary plans for an outdoor classroom resembling honeycombs, which will provide a stunning visual dynamic for the entire project. We are thankful for all of our professional partners and organizations.  

CALL FOR VOLUNTEERS
“We are very thankful for everyone who has stepped forward to help with the project thus far,” said Jill Ziegler, Westmont Community Development Director and Richmond Gardens Volunteer.  “Now we’re reaching out to the community to recruit people with specific interests and skillsets to help us with our next steps.  This is a great chance for people to get in on the ground floor of planning the future success of Richmond Gardens.”  At this time, the committee is looking for volunteers to help with the following: 

** Beekeeping
** Fundraising
** Publicity
** Volunteer Coordination

To learn more about Richmond Gardens and get involved, please visit RichmondGardens.org or email us at info@richmondgardens.org. Also, be sure to join us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/richmondeducationgardens. 

FUN FACT - Did you know that there are approximately 16,000 species of bees?

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