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October 2010
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Award-winning I-70 beautification project rooted in Lilly Day of Service

Lilly Global Day of Service 2009 volunteers at Holt Road interchange. Photo courtesy Carole Copeland/Eli Lilly and Company

Lilly Global Day of Service 2009 volunteers at Holt Road interchange. Photo courtesy Carole Copeland/Eli Lilly and Company

Thousands of volunteers will plant 73,000 native trees, shrubs and perennials in the interchanges along a six-mile stretch of I-70, from I-465 to I-65, on Thursday, Oct, 7.

As part of Lilly Global Day of Service, Eli Lilly and Company employees and their partnering organizations will don red t-shirts for their planting duties again this year for the project begun in 2008.

Native species were selected because of their natural look and hardiness. “Native plants have a more untamed look, adding hues and textures of Indiana’s natural landscape,” said Carole C. Copeland, corporate communications manager at Lilly and a volunteer.

However, just like any landscaping project, everyone learned lessons.

“Certain hardy plants that survive well in some landscapes did not do well in the highway setting, so we have adjusted the types of plants that will be installed this year,” she said.

Thousands of volunteers will continue the beautification of the I-70/Holt Road interchange. Photo courtesy Carole Copeland/Eli Lilly and Company

Thousands of volunteers will continue the beautification of interchanges along the I-70, from I-465 to I-65. Photo courtesy Carole Copeland/Eli Lilly and Company

Holt Road was the pilot, to help understand what would work well for the the whole six-mile artery, said David Forsell, president of Keep Indianapolis Beautiful Inc., which coordinates the project.

Forsell said KIB invested a significant amount of time and money to understand soil conditions, improve survivability and promote more flourishing vegetation from day one. (For a list of plants, many of which will work well in the home landscape, visit the hoosiergardener.com)

Improving the Holt Road/I-70 area has been an aspiration of community leaders for years, Copeland said.

“Beauty matters, particularly in an urban context,” said Forsell. “When beauty is absent, we can, in turn, forget its contributions to the environment, to calming our nerves on the morning commute, even to our region’s ability to attract visitors and new businesses.”

The National Roadside Vegetative Management Association awarded the Best Urban Roadside Project in the United States to Eli Lilly and Company and Keep Indianapolis Beautiful. Photo courtesy Carole Copeland/Eli Lilly and Company

The National Roadside Vegetative Management Association awarded the Best Urban Roadside Project in the United States to Eli Lilly and Company and Keep Indianapolis Beautiful. Photo courtesy Carole Copeland/Eli Lilly and Company

Earlier this week, the National Roadside Vegetative Management Association awarded the Best Urban Roadside Project in the United States to KIB and Lilly.

Info about the entire project can be found at a Greener Welcome.

Here’s the list of native plants for the highway project. I-70 Greener Welcome Plant List

Recycle plastic and clay pots at the Indianapolis Museum of Art

October 2, 2010
10:00 AMto1:00 PM
Sue Nord Peiffer washes pots for recycling at the Indianapolis Museum of Art greenhouse.

Sue Nord Peiffer washes pots for recycling at the Indianapolis Museum of Art greenhouse.

The Indianapolis Museum of Art’s greenhouse will accept empty nursery pots for recycling and reuse, 10 am. to 1 p.m., Oct. 2. These reclaimed pots are used by the greenhouse, saving money and reducing the need for new plastic production.

Plastic and clay pots can be dropped off in the greenhouse parking lot. Please knock the dirt out of the pots and give them a quick rinse before dropping them off. Annual cell pack and flimsy trays are not useful to the greenhouse, so please recycle these on your own.