Accotink’s Nearly Native Garden serves as a sacred space and is an expression of the UU Seventh Principle: “Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.” Our garden is a wildlife habitat, as certified by the National Wildlife Federation and we are always in need of help to maintain this beautiful space. Contact JoAnn F, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Landscaping and Gardens
Accotink is located on eleven acres of rolling land adjacent to Burke Lake Park. We care for the lawns, wooded areas, a wetland, and several gardens surrounding the church building and we strive to maintain the land in keeping with our spiritual practices whenever possible
Nearly Native Garden
In 1995, Accotink gardeners began to convert a steep hill that was covered with poor soil and construction debris into a lush garden that would deepen Accotink’s connection to nature.
Nurturing mostly endemic plants and containing two water features, our Nearly Native Garden has been certified by the National Wildlife Federation as a wildlife habitat. We care for the entire web of life, starting with the microbes and insects that feed larger organisms. If you visit the Nearly Native Garden, you might see tadpoles, lizards, turtles, hummingbirds, and maybe even a great heron flying overhead. These animals are drawn to passionflower vines, butterfly weeds, pawpaw trees and other native plants in the garden.
Native Wetland Meadow
As climate change brought more moisture to our region, maintaining a section of our lawn became impractical and environmentally untenable. In 2019 Accotink obtained a Virginia Conservation Assistance Program grant to convert this 800 square foot area into a native wet meadow. The plants were installed as part of a Boy Scout Eagle project. An Accotink member donated additional funds to add milkweeds beside the meadow which will support monarch butterflies. It’s a joy to see cone flowers, Joe Pye weed, ironweed, and native grasses slowly reclaim the area and thrive in a successful ecosystem.
Food Garden (coming in 2024)
Accotink will begin construction of a food garden in June 2024! We plan to plant our first crops in Spring 2025. The produce we raise will be donated to food insecure neighbors and topsoil for this garden will be generated entirely through composting. While it will take time to develop and augment the soil, once optimized, the garden should grow over 1,000 pounds of fresh produce a year.
For information on our Memorial Garden, please see the Memorials page.