Rock Point was recently selected by the Executive Council of the Episcopal Church and the churchwide Advisory Council on the Stewardship of Creation to receive a $10,000 grant toward the creation of a pollinator meadow for bees, birds and butterflies. The funds will help convert a filed that houses Rock Point’s 35-tracker solar farm from weeds and invasive plants to a beautiful meadow full of native plants which attract pollinators of all kinds.
The funds will help convert a field that houses Rock Point’s 35-tracker solar farm from weeds and invasive plants to a beautiful meadow full of native plants which attract pollinators of all kinds.
Rock Point’s primary partner in this project is Middlebury-based pollinator expert Bee the Change. Other partners include the Wild for Pollinators initiative, which was borne out of a partnership between KidsGardening.org, the Intervale Center, and the Vermont Community Garden Network. Rock Point’s newly-converted field will be listed as an official “Wild for Pollinators” site.
The conversion of the solar farm is also part of Rock Point’s larger Land Use Plan, a component of which is to provide integrated landscape and environmental education. In addition to hosting workshops and tours for Rock Point visitors, the Rock Point Board will be reaching out to Episcopal parishes throughout the Diocese, encouraging them to develop pollinator meadows on their own properties.
Rock Point Board Member Jackie Arbuckle commented, “As a place with strong existing historical, ecological and cultural significance in Burlington, Rock Point continually promotes responsible stewardship of the land and cements its legacy as a welcoming sanctuary for plants, animals and people. Building from this vision, this project has direct ecosystem impacts for wild and cultivated species. Community and school gardeners will benefit from the initiative in terms of greater numbers of pollinators, improved plant health and increased soil nutrients.”
She continued, “In thinking about our vision for Rock Point, the early Celtic monasticism’s model for evangelism spoke to the Rock Point Board. Their monastic communities were not enclosures, but porous to the wider community. They set up sacred practices to be observed by all who entered their communities. Their intention was to introduce the faith through these practices, to give those they welcomed a taste of the faith through the relationships and practices they observed.”
Tours and workshops in and around the pollinator meadow are in the planning stages and will be announced soon, as are volunteer opportunities such as guiding tours, maintaining the grounds, and tracking pollinator species.