BAKERSVILLE – Howard Davis thought the convenience center where he works as an attendant on Highway 226 near Mine Creek Road just outside Bakersville had the potential to be more aesthetically pleasing, so he brought some flowers from his house and planted them next to a storage shed.
The effort, which began about 18 months ago, quickly snowballed into an all-out community project.
“So many people donated flowers, and I don’t have any money involved in the garden,” Davis said. “People just kept donating, so everyone got involved. People buy the flowers and I put them out.”
The space that was once the home of two overgrown rhododendron bushes now has daylilies, sunflowers, Japanese irises, black-eyed Susans, gladiolas, daffodils, tulips and a few cucumber plants.
“The area when the bushes were there looked so bad,” Davis said. “I called (county manager) Kathy Young and asked her if she cared if I got rid of all that and she said I could.”
Young said she supports the community garden just as she does any project that benefits the people of Mitchell County.
“That garden makes that area look so much better,” Young said. “It’s a great thing he and the residents have done and has made a big difference.”
The light poles in the garden were donated as was the rock that acts as the garden’s border, which Davis put down himself.
The Mitchell County Government bought and donated the garden’s six-by-sixes, the wagon wheel centerpiece belonged to Davis and a colorful birdhouse was donated by Germaine Galjour.
“I’ve had a lot of comments on it,” Davis said. “One lady said she just pulled in here to see the flower garden. Even people who weren’t able to do anything loaned me the tools I needed to do it. It’s really a community project.”
Davis is retired from The Quartz Corp. and has worked as the convenience center’s attendant for the past two years. He said he plans to add more tulips and mulch to the garden before the project is complete.