Hostas For Heroes And GreenCare For Communities

Hostas For Heroes And GreenCare For Communities

Perennial producer Walters Gardens in Zeeland Mich., is donating 25 cents for every hosta ‘American Hero’ it sells to GreenCare for Troops, a program by Project Evergreen that provides landscaping services to military families.

Tough and durable like the soldiers it honors, this hosta displays bold variegation all season long. Its leaves have wide, dark-green margins and a creamy white center speckled with green.

GreenCare for Troops registered its 10,000th military family in the second quarter of 2010. Through May 31, 1,056 military families registered this year alone to have their lawns managed by local participating lawn care professionals. April was a particularly strong month for new registrations, when more than 400 military families signed up for the program. The rise in participation is attributed to the cause being featured in late February on the Discovery Channel’s Dirty Jobs with celebrity host Mike Rowe. In the three-month span following the airing, from March to May, more than 875 families registered. Visit www.projectevergreen.com/gcft to watch GreenCare for Troops on Dirty Jobs.

Project Evergreen also is recruiting more metro areas for its GreenCare for Communities program. The organization is seeking grant proposals from state nursery, landscape and other green industry associations. The grant has a value of between $30,000 and $40,000.

Community programs to date in areas with strong green industry support include Akron, Ohio; Milwaukee, Wisc.; and the I-40 Corridor in North Carolina between Raleigh and Greensboro/Winston-Salem. Project Evergreen works with the community to educate and inform the public about environmental, economic and liefestyle benefits of well-maintained green spaces.

As part of the partnership in Milwaukee, Stein Gardens & Gifts placed yard signs with Project EverGreen’s advertising messages at its 16 store locations in and around the state’s most populous city. In addition to placing the yard sign advertisements at its store locations, Stein’s website is also running Project EverGreen banner ads online. These banner ads carry many of the same messages as the yard signs themselves. The advertisements include fun phrases like “Be an oxygen-maker” and “Be a cash-collector.” For more information, visit www.steingardensandgifts.com.

“This is a great opportunity for a state association to increase its visibility with consumers through this partnership with us,” says Project EverGreen’s Executive Director Den Gardner. “We are looking for groups that have a great story to tell to consumers and want assistance with funding, project management and communications.”

Deadline for applications is Sept. 30 and am association and city will be selected by Oct. 31. For more information, visit www.projectevergreen.com or contact the office at 877-758-4835.

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