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Pollinator Garden

Erie County, PA
Program Year: 2017

In March of 2016, Erie County Department of Health (ECDH) sponsored a rain barrel through Environment Erie and the Erie County Conservation District's, "Don't Give Up the Drip," community art project. The rain barrel is on display in front of the Health Department. The rain barrel project was a collaborative effort between the Erie Conservation District and Environment Erie. ECDH wanted to sponsor a barrel to support this art/water conservation project. After the rain barrels were put on display, two different tours were given by different organizations to show the public all 52 rain barrels. ECDH wanted to extend our involvement in that project and help grow a partnership with the Erie County Cooperative Extension's Master Gardeners to create a certified pollinator garden. The Cooperative Extension Offices were recently relocated and now share office space with the Health Department. Our offices are located in an urban, residential neighborhood that has recently been targeted for revitalization by the City of Erie Strategic Plan. A coalition (“Our West Bayfront”) has been formed by city leadership and residents of the neighborhood to help revitalize this area. As Erie County Department of Health is a “resident” of this neighborhood, it is important for us to also partner with this coalition. The Master Gardeners and the Health Department have worked together to create this garden. Not only does a pollinator garden help to protect the environment, but it is also beautifying the area. In August of 2016, we applied for and were awarded a grant for this project from Keep PA Beautiful. In the spring of this year, we will be applying for certification for a “pollinator friendly garden” through Penn State and adding signage identifying the different species of plants, how they support pollinators, and the vital need for the protection of pollinators for our environment and our survival. There is also a sign identifying our rain barrel’s artist and how harvesting rainwater benefits the community. This project will be an ongoing example of how cooperation and vision can help inspire others for the good of the neighborhood and our environment.

Ms. Claudia Woodard
Project Secretary