A few weeks ago, I wrote about the sustainable gardening plan we created at Sustainable Capitol Hill. Well, we have begun! On Tuesday six of us got together and walked the neighborhood, seeking a roundabout to adopt.
If you’re looking to do this yourself, try calling your city or town department of transportation – if it’s not through them, it’s likely they’ll know who to talk with. If you’re in Seattle, you can find all the information you need to start here. They call them “orphan” traffic circles here. How sad!
So we began with a map of the neighborhood, and set out to look for an orphaned roundabout. We also thought we’d get some ideas from those that are well maintained. Keep in mind that it’s still winter here, so they are not as beautiful as they will be in spring and summer, but here’s what we found…
We gathered around the first one, and admired. Clearly it’s not orphaned.
This one is my favorites in the summer – full of towering cardoon flowers and beautiful bushes of sage.
Unfortunately it’s not so beautiful in the winter!
This one is quite beautiful. We also talked about how to discourage graffiti.
You’d never know, but this one beautifully disguises a manhole cover in the center.
Here’s where we realized we looked a little odd to passers-by!
Have you ever noticed the trees in roundabouts? These are gigantic!
And they got bigger! Note the tiny humans and cars.
And then, as the it began to get too dark to take pictures, we happened upon an orphan…
And after talking and planning for a bit, we walked down the street, and found one twice as big and even more orphaned!
And then one more, the most neglected of all. It made us all sad, actually: full of weeds, trash, and terrible soil. And so it was that we decided to adopt all three…
This was an incredibly fun excursion. I got to know 5 of my neighbors, I learned quite a lot about our neighborhood, I saw details in things I normally pass right by, we talked with other neighbors as we walked (many people were curious what we were doing), and I exercised, walking several miles!
The next step will be to notify the city that we’ve found 3 neglected traffic circles, and then we’ll create a plan, and spend a weekend bringing them back to life!
We’re planning a native/edible garden. But each will have to be fairly maintenance-free, and both wet and drought tolerant, too (there is no running water in summer, and it gets quite wet here in winter). No small order, I know! Any ideas???!