FORT GORDON, Ga. (WJBF) – Fort Gordon hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony marking the reopening of their community garden.

This is part of a recent effort by the AmeriCorps National Civilian Corps to get the garden back into working order.

The ribbon cutting took place Wednesday, March 29th.

This time last year, Fort Gordon brought in goats to help keep down the overgrowth after years of neglect.

The AmeriCorps team spent approximately a month on Fort Gordon not only restoring the garden but also working on conservation projects in the installation’s training areas.

The project marks the first time a U.S. Army installation has paired with the NCCC.

The Fort Gordon Garrison Commander, COL Reginald Evans, spoke in honor of the ribbon-cutting and the re-opening of the garden – he even worked alongside other Command Staff to plant two blueberry bushes that one day are hoped to help provide a ready source of fresh fruit for the community.

Fort Gordon was the first Army Installation to ever request and receive an AmeriCorps team.

In addition to the garden restoration project, the group worked with the Environmental Division-Natural Resources Branch on natural resource work projects that included controlled burns to ensure healthy growth and maintenance of Fort Gordon’s long-leafed pines and wiregrass ecosystem.

The AmeriCorps Team, during their month-long stay at the installation, also worked at various ponds and habitat restoration for area red-cockaded woodpeckers and gopher tortoises, both of which are endangered and call Fort Gordon home.

Conservation is a part of the Fort Gordon mission, wrote a spokesperson for installation, adding that for 30 consecutive years Fort Gordon has been designated as a “Tree City USA” through the Arbor Day Foundation, in partnership with the Georgia Forestry Commission. Two Live Oaks were also donated during the event and planted in honor of the garden restoration continued “Tree City USA” designation.