Campus is primarily irrigated using recycled rainwater, collected in the campus lake. Several large turf areas are irrigated, and all planted beds that are irrigated use high efficiency drip irrigation with minimal evaporation.
Three Sisters Garden
The College’s community garden, known as the Three Sisters Garden, is open to all members of the Meredith community. The project is led by Associate Professor of Human Environmental Sciences Bill Landis, who sees the garden as a way to bring attention to the connections between the health of the environment and human health, and the benefits of a stronger local food system, food accessibility and the development of an equitable food supply. The garden’s name refers to the ancient Native American practice of planting a trio of food crops—corn, beans and squash—together. There are a variety of ways for the Meredith community to get involved in the garden, including preparing garden beds, planting, harvesting, watering, planning for future projects, and garden construction. The garden needs people with interest and enthusiasm that can bring new ideas that will keep the garden evolving and dynamic!
Planted in 2009, the edible landscape offers a living demonstration of where and how things grow. The landscape features plants that will produce edible fruits as they mature. Apples, plums, pomegranate, blackberries, raspberries and kiwis are among the mix.
Meredith College students planted a Green Belt in honor of Nobel Laureate Wangari Maathai’s life work and her visit to Meredith in 2009. In total, 400 trees are arranged across campus in arboretum-style and botanically interesting groupings. Take a self-guided tour of the Green Belt by beginning at the southeast corner of campus near the intersection of Hillsborough and Faircloth streets, and following the greenway to the northwest corner of campus near the NC Museum of Art Park.
The forest is a unique learning space and refuge inside Raleigh’s beltline. Located on the northern edge of campus, is 50 acres of protected wildlife habitat and home to a tributary creek of the Crabtree Creek watershed. The Meredith Forest features a permanent one hectare research plot and more than 20 species of trees. Meredith College is a founding institution of the Ecological Research as Education Network—through this partnership our faculty and students are conducting research in the Forest.
Integrated Pest Management
We operate an integrated pest management program to minimize pesticide use. We spot treat as necessary to reduce the exposure to and use of pesticides.
Drought Resistant Plantings
The majority of campus planting is drought resistant (also known as xeriscaping). We choose native plants when feasible and use mulch and other planning techniques to lessen the need for irrigation. Meredith partners with local tree trimming companies to collect trimming “chips” which we use as mulch. We use composted materials such as these wood chips and leaves to increase soil fertility.