Several years ago the Potomac Triangle Parks, public spaces located between the Potomac Gardens and Hopkins Apartments public housing complexes (in Southeast Washington DC) were renovated. However, the ambitious plans never fully came to fruition because the government funding ran out before any meaningful landscaping could be done. Provisions for maintenance fell by the wayside as well, resulting in conditions wrought by neglect overtaking the parcels. Disuse fostered an unsafe environment that led to tragedy in October 2019.
In June 2020, ANC Commissioner Kelly Waud (6B07) and Naomi Mitchell, Community Liaison for Councilmember Charles Allen asked Guerrilla Gardeners of Washington DC to rescue the Potomac Triangle Parks from the downward spiral. They helped us form an alliance with Brothas Huddle to organize the residents of Potomac Gardens and Hopkins to reclaim these overgrown and underutilized spaces and make them more attractive, usable and safe - and keep them that way. Other groups, including Washington Naval Lodge No. 4 joined in the reclamation effort.
Our collaboration empowered the residents of this community to assume collective "ownership" of these spaces in order to improve and maintain them for their own use and benefit through "sweat equity." Neighbors embraced the residents of Potomac Gardens and Hopkins through this project with donations and physical labor.
Capitol Hill Corner: Guerrilla Gardeners Rally Community to Take on Potomac Avenue Triangle Park
Guerrilla Blog: Unsung Heroes of Potomac Triangle Parks
By the end of September, the parks had been cleaned up and gardens filled with chrysanthemums replaced weed patches. Volunteers returned in November to plant bulbs, daylilies and liriope for the following year's bloom.
The commitment of Guerrilla Gardeners of Washington DC to the Potomac Triangle Parks and the Potomac Gardens and Hopkins community is broad, strong and long term, extending to the end of 2025. During this period, an autonomous "Friends of" group will be established to maintain and further develop the parks.
In addition to landscape improvement and maintenance, we will offer education and training opportunities as well as organizing and supporting creative programming for these spaces working with Brothas Huddle and other groups.
- Planting 3 lilac
- Planting 4 crape myrtle
- Planting 2 tulip poplar
- Planting 2 dogwood
- Planting 2 redbud
- Planting 500 daffodils
- Planting 500 tulips
- Planting 100 Asian lilies
- Planting 24 daylilies
- Planting 20 iris
- Planting 60 coneflower
- Planting 24 black-eyed Susans
- Applying 136 bags of mulch
- Adding 20 bags of soil conditioner
- Planting 130 marigold
- Planting 88 petunia
- Planting 36 celosia
- Planting 30 coleus
- Planting 131 hosta
- Planting 37 coral bell
- Planting 60 black-eyed Susans
- Planting 40 astilbe
- Planting 8 azalea
- Planting 7 rhododendron
- Planting 6 camellia
- Planting 2 crape myrtle
- Planting 24 coneflower
- Planting 12 oxeye daisy
- Installation of landscape fabric
- Applying of 190 bags of mulch
- Adding 52 bags of soil conditioner
- Weeding (even more than last fall!)
- Removal of sod for annual bed
- Planting 1,175 bulbs (300 tulips, 700 daffodils and 175 Asian lilies)
- Splitting and planting 265 daylilies
- Planting 130 liriope
- Planting 8 crape myrtle
- Planting 80 shade varieties (hosta, ajuga, coral bell, coleus)
- Planting 10 azalea
- Planting 3 tea olive
- Planting 72 chrysanthemum
- Adding 20 bags of soil conditioner
- Applying 55 bags of mulch
- Weeding (so much weeding!)
- Clearing brush
- Mowing (thanks Clay!)
- Installation of gravel path
Thank you volunteers!
Potomac Triangle Parks project update September 2021
A review of the Potomac Triangle Parks Reclamation Project with an eye to the the future of these rejuvenated green spaces.
Potomac Triangle Parks on July 24, 2021
Residents of the Potomac Gardens and Hopkins community and their neighbors celebrated their rejuvenated green spaces.
Potomac Triangle Parks on April 10, 2021
Volunteers labored for three Saturdays in a row to get these parks ready for their spectacular Spring debut.
Potomac Triangle Parks on September 26, 2020
Together, we helped to organize the community to reclaim these overgrown and underutilized spaces and make them more attractive, usable and safe - and keep them that way.
Potomac Triangle Parks on August 26, 2020
Guerrilla Gardeners of Washington DC teamed up with Brothas Huddle and the residents of Potomac Gardens and Hopkins to landscape two adjacent parcels known as Potomac Triangle Parks.
The initial phases of the renovation of the landscape in the Potomac Triangle Parks are now complete. Guerrilla Gardeners of Washington DC will continue to maintain and develop these spaces throughout our five-year commitment.
However, flowers and shrubbery alone will not bring these parks to an equitable status in this underserved community. The absence of frequent and constructive activity in these spaces will eventually invite the misuse that previously resulted in devastating consequences. Our goal is to partner with various groups to introduce positive energy into these parks through social, cultural, recreational and educational events.
Programming these spaces is beyond our core mission, so we are especially grateful that Aquarius Vann-Ghasri is assisting us as Event Coordinator for the Potomac Triangle Parks events we are sponsoring. This role will eventually be filled by the autonomous "Friends of" group we will help to establish in the coming years. At that point the vision of the Potomac Triangle Parks as community assets and the confirmation of the vital nature of green spaces in an urban environment will be realized.
More information about these events and programs will be posted as it develops.
MLK Day of Service
Teddy Bear Picnic
Saturday, July 22, 2023
A celebration of the reclamation of the Potomac Triangle Parks
Cool fun in the hot sun
Costume parade and treat distribution
Spreading the joy of the season
Celebrating the 7 principles
On a Labor Day Saturday evening, the vision of the Potomac Triangle Parks Reclamation Project came to fruition. Under a setting sun, residents of Potomac Gardens and Hopkins and their neighbors gathered to enjoy a live musical performance by Shug and Velvet Cover and poetic compositions from Geraldine Jackson.
The rejuvenated green space, now manicured and planted with shrubs and flowers provided a pleasant environment for the entertaining program, the first of many planned for the Potomac Triangle Parks.
Hosted by the Capitol Hill Seventh-day Adventist Church for its "Acts of Kindness Day", a children's book reading event featured a local author, Angela Kissel who wrote about Rosie and a reading of "Miss Rumphius". The story in this book embodies the philosophy of the Rumphius Foundation, donor of copies of the book for this event and sponsor of the Rumphius Foundation Internships.
We are proud that our Potomac Triangle Parks Project has been selected as a VoicesDMV Community Action Awards winner! This award comes with funding from the Greater Washington Community Foundation to support the work of our volunteers to develop equitable green spaces for the Potomac Gardens and Hopkins community.
Guerrilla Gardeners of Washington DC is pleased to introduce the 2021 Rumphius Foundation Internship Program for the Potomac Triangle Parks Reclamation Project. These three young residents of Potomac Gardens and Hopkins Apartments were selected from candidates nominated by our collaboration partners, including Brotha’s Huddle and the Resident Council, for summer-long internships. These interns will assist in the maintenance and enhancement of the recently rejuvenated landscaping of Potomac Triangle Parks and learn gardening basics from the experienced volunteer leadership of Guerrilla Gardeners of Washington DC.
Add your name to the donors who help us keep these spaces attractive, usable and safe:
Funds donated using the link below are spent exclusively on the Potomac Triangle Parks.