Fiskars: Revitalized San Francisco Neighborhood gets Garden Makeover

Fiskars Project Orange Thumb and Lowes transform bare ground
into a thriving garden – in a single day

SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Where this morning there was a steep, bare slope dotted with struggling bushes, tonight Goettingen Street boasts a verdant hillside garden. Brightly flowering ground cover holds the fragile soil, while colorful vines and bold colors peek over new terraced walls.

The most amazing part: the entire transformation took just a single day – thanks to the combined efforts of a determined team. Fiskars joined with Lowe’s to bring nature back to San Francisco’s Goettingen neighborhood through Fiskars Project Orange Thumb initiative.

A team of over 50 tilled and planted from early morning to late afternoon at the revitalized garden site on August 26. The makeover included all donated labor, design time, project coordination, tools and all necessary supplies. Fiskars selected the Goettingen Neighborhood for this project and coordinated, developed, designed and managed the day long makeover. Lowe’s donated all planting materials and supplies for the project.

“The Goettingen Garden is the second in a series of national gardening projects for Fiskars. Our successful garden transformation in Chicago (May, 2008) proved the importance of gardening to provide beauty, sustainable food resources and a place of community,” said Paul Tonnesen, President of Fiskars.

Master Gardener Joe Lamp’l, nationally known as “Joe Gardener,” created a garden design that includes many native and drought tolerant species, such as Russian Sage, Purple Hopseed and Oakleaf Hydrangea.

“It has been a dream come true to be selected for the Fiskars Project Orange Thumb Program,” said Trish Winum, member of Goettingen Neighbors Group. “Goettingen Neighbors Group has worked together to make our streets safer, build community, and beautify our neighborhood. Fiskars has helped us meet our objectives while putting Goettingen Street, together with the Portola District of San Francisco, in the spotlight. It’s been a fantastic experience.”

The San Francisco initiative is an extension of Fiskars’ successful Project Orange Thumb garden grant program. Started in 2003, Project Orange Thumb provides community garden groups with the tools and materials needed to reach their goals for neighborhood beautification and horticulture education. Most recently, Fiskars’ Project Orange Thumb successfully completed a garden makeover on Chicago’s south side in the Altgeld Gardens neighborhood.

Fiskars Project Orange Thumb – San Francisco has additional support from: The City of San Francisco Department of Public Works, San Francisco Parks and Trust, Lowe’s, Radisson Hotels, United Industries, Hines Horticulture and the Goettingen Neighborhood Group.

To receive high-res photos or b-roll from the San Francisco garden event, please visit:

To receive high-res photos or b-roll from the Chicago garden event, please visit:

Interview availabilities LIVE or via telephone 8/26 – 8/27/08


Since 2003, communities across the country have received more than $200,000 in tools, plants and expertise through Fiskars Project Orange Thumb. Designed to foster neighborhood pride, the grant program has helped to install rain gardens, establish neighborhood vegetable plots, and re-vitalize local parks, creating many beautiful, bountiful spaces that share hope, lift spirits and build community bonds. For more information, visit


With fiscal year 2007 sales of $48.3 billion, Lowe’s Companies, Inc. is a FORTUNE® 50 company that serves approximately 14 million customers a week at more than 1,575 home improvement stores in the United States and Canada. Founded in 1946 and based in Mooresville, N.C., Lowe’s is the second-largest home improvement retailer in the world. For more information, visit


Public Works administers several community programs to keep San Francisco clean and green. Street Parks encourages community-managed public open-space gardens located on city-owned public rights-of-way, such as the Goettingen Garden, but are developed and maintained by local residents. The Department of Public Works provides outreach, permits, street vacations, design and construction, horticulture and technical advice, training, plants, chips, water and clean-up help. Since its inception in 2004, 25 community gardens have been developed and 7 are in progress.

About San Francisco Parks and Trust:

Since 1971, the San Francisco Parks Trust has supported parks, recreation, and open spaces in San Francisco with the fiscal sponsorship of community organizations like Goettingen Neighbors Group. SFPT also provides educational programming and direct support of the SF Recreation and Park Department through grants and capital campaigns restoring some of the City’s most beloved gems. Recent capital projects include the restoration of the Conservatory of Flowers and the Koret Children’s Quarter.