RIDGEFIELD — In February, the South West Washington Wine Association adopted the monthly maintenance of roundabouts across the Ridgefield area, planting Marechal Foch grapes at the Pioneer Street roundabout.
While planting grape vines in roundabouts is not common in the U.S., it is an innovative way for cities to celebrate their local culture and history, while also beautifying their streets and promoting sustainable landscaping practices. Many cities recruit volunteers such as Clyde Burkle, who was present at the planting.
“We wanted these grapes planted because we knew the wine business was beginning to grow here in Ridgefield,” said City Councilor Ron Oslow. “We wanted to plant the vineyard so people traveling the roundabouts would see the budding industry growing up around them.”
David Regan, owner of 14 Acres Vineyard and Winery, along with several other Ridgefield winery owners were tasked with the upkeep of these new roundabout vineyards. Pruning, spraying, netting, and harvesting the grapes.
“Every good winemaker knows that grape vines naturally consume carbon dioxide,” Regan explained. “So where better for a carbon dioxide breathing vine to live than in the center of a traffic round about?”
Now, as Ridgefield drivers goes about their day, they are also helping wine-grapes grow.