Since the 80’s, people have been volunteering all across our beautiful state in order to help keep it that way. Quiet Village decided to join the effort in 2020, in an idea inspired by our commitment to sustainability and participation in the St. Louis Green Business Challenge. Our team of landscape designers, horticulturalists and eco-champions all came together to fulfill every type of adoption available. See how the beautification project has unfolded as we get closer to planting a gorgeous garden for our community to enjoy in Olivette, MO.
Adopt-A-Highway Missouri – Beautification Project in Olivette
As a participating volunteer group in the program, you have four options as an adopter. Volunteers can choose to clean up litter, mow grass, beautify through landscaping, or to Grow Native! by planting native MO wildflowers or grasses at the adopted roadway location. Our sustainability team decided to select all three options, as long as the area was easily accessible in order to pick up trash, mow grass, and keep an eye on the landscape design and plantings that are to be designed.
We then coordinated with MoDOT to adopt a unique off-ramp intersection space just down the road from the Quiet Village office at Olive Blvd. and Highway 170. This is a very busy intersection that seemed to get lots of litter. The intersection offered uninspiring views with some grass mixed in with a heavy blend of weeds and overgrown brush. The first volunteer event we organized saw us picking up several bags of trash and developing the garden beds for the new native plant-focused landscaping.
Then, construction crews brought in a construction dingo to start reshaping the ground & soil layout to help all new plantings survive. The existing soil conditions were less than ideal, so we are taking additional steps to make sure the new community garden will become established with healthy roots & good drainage. Heavy commuter traffic, use of salt for snow melt, littering, and general use all contribute to the lack of beauty, biodiversity and visual interest in this outdoor area.
The new wildflower garden beds are now formed using steel landscaping edging to bring natural curves to the design. This first phase of landscape design installation allows for the concept to be established while removing weeds that would otherwise have to be continuously cut throughout the growing season (spring-fall in St. Louis). This saves us ongoing maintenance and helps our local community visualize the changes that are underway in this longer-term volunteer project.
Here you can start to see how the space will transform as we continue working on this beautification project alongside our frequently used roadways. If the middle shape looks familiar, that’s intentional! We hope to inspire people to be creative in their gardens at home or at work. We want this garden to give our neighbors, friends, and clients a bit of joy in their daily commute. And, we also want this to serve as a place of learning. When you see beautiful plants that thrive well in St. Louis, we hope it inspired you to plant a few in your own bare yard spaces!
The next phase of the project will involve bringing in plants, rock material, soil & plant ID tags. We anticipate having more completed soon. Quiet Village is also committed to cleaning up litter 4 times a year at this intersection. A mowing crew visits this site bi-weekly to mow and pick up trash. Then, we host a volunteer meet-up with our office team to pick-up larger debris in surrounding areas that go beyond our volunteer mowing space. Follow along on the beautification on social media (find Quiet Village on Facebook or Instagram) or check back here as we post updates!