Assisted-living facility administrator sows garden in downtown Alexandria

Jul 15, 2013

Officials with an assisted-living facility in downtown Alexandria have turned an adjacent property into a half-acre garden. Billy Allen, administrator of The Canterbury House, said the garden started as an idea to build a small raised bed but was scaled up. He said its 25 residents are enjoying the first bountiful summer harvest.

The harvest at The Canterbury House in downtown Alexandria where baskets of fresh produce are made up for local senior citizens.
Credit The Canterbury House

“I bet we picked 400 tomatoes," Allen said. "They (residents) have a salad with every lunch and every dinner, and it’s got sliced tomatoes on it.”

More than 40 pounds of squash was distributed to Food Bank clients. Allen said the residents enjoy looking out onto rows of corn and giving direction on how to cultivate it.

“We have a couple who wish they could get out there and help us with the harvesting and weeding and all that stuff. They point and tell us what to do. But, it’s really been something neat for them," Allen said.

The Canterbury House is attracting attention, Allen said, since a large garden has sprung up downtown.