and Heirloom Garden Systems
Dillard - The Rediscovery Garden
When Covid-19 first hit in March 2020 we had to stop our other projects and essentially holed up in our home in Dillard for a few months. We had an elderly neighbor who had been interested in our work for a while and with the extra time, we ended up helping him 'rediscover' the existing, prior garden layout that had become unmanageable after 30 years of overgrowth. Our focus on this small, backyard project was to preserve as many existing native & wild species as possible, add honey bees to the garden, manage the Appalachian Rivercane that was running rampant, and reclaim the pathways, flower garden pockets and terraces. Perennials like fruit trees and medicinal shrubs were added in the few pockets of light around the property and traditional garden beds, as well as two Bounty Beds, were installed to aid in easy, annual food production. We learned a lot from this client about local, wild species in our area and, due to his past carpentry and construction work, were able to source 90% of all materials used on-site! We did not think to take before-photos (due to uncertainty of when we would resume our other Covid-stalled projects), but the pictures do not do justice to the dramatic difference just a few weeks of work made.
Our favorite feature on this property was creating a peaceful Rivercane forest path. Rivercane looks like bamboo, but it is native to the Appalachian area. It was widely used in Native American tribes, especially by the Cherokee tribe. The Rivercane was thriving a little too much on a slope where a large parking lot ran it's drain line. Although initially the plan was to remove all the Rivercane, we ended up keeping a good portion of the Rivercane for its superior erosion control and unique value, and instead shaped it into a 'Rivercane Forest' to become a peaceful place with Native Appalachian heritage.
'"What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have never been discovered."
-Ralph Waldo Emerson