Genesis Grounds Committee

Genesis Grounds Committee Members are; 

Phil Barr - co-chair, Sarah Weiss  - co-chair, Linda Annesley, Laura Wallace,  MaryLu Barth, and Eric Slosberg

Dear Congregants: 


Looking for a few folks to help with the final push to prep the new butterfly garden location.  The plans are coming soon!


  • Remove last of landscape fabric,

  • Move existing plants,

  • Level Bed,

  • and or course this time of year there's no shortage of weed to pull.


If you think you might have an hour or two, send an email and we'll work out a time.  The weather is predicted to be dry in the afternoon and evening.

For weeding, or specific tasks, just show up


Wear a mask and work gloves.



Phil Barr and Sarah Weiss

Genesis Grounds Co-Chairs

Your Partners in Grime




Genesis Grounds - Take a Task

Now that the weather is improving, treat yourself to some time outside digging in the dirt.

 Due to social distancing restrictions we're asking people to signup to for raking, mulching and weeding on their own time. 

  • Please observe social distancing. 

  • Bring your own gloves & tools. 

  • The building is closed, so there will be no access to bathrooms.

  • Put raked leaves in the fenced compost area on the hill on the SE corner of the back parking lot.

Please take a slot.  We're new to this so please reachout with questions about what needs to be done.

Your partners in grime

The Genesis Grounds Committee -

call/text Phil at 734-717-4040 with questions.

Genesis Annual Grounds Committee Report:


SignUpGenius link

Beautiful and Safe: Recent Grounds Actions - Letter to Congregants

March 28th 2020

Dear Congregants of STC and TBE,


This year we are proposing two steps to promote bio-diversity in our gardens.  We're embarking on a multi-year butterfly garden project to contribute to the health of the butterfly and bee population.  We will also stop using herbicides on our lawns to control weeds.

Coming to the decision to stop using herbicides has not been an easy one.  Since taking on grounds co-leadership with Sarah almost three years ago, we've had many conversations about the use of herbicides on the grounds.  Two statements capture the concerns and the tensions around this issue: 

·  "We want to maintain a professional looking institution"

·  "Please stop exposing our children to chemicals"


We've discussed this with our lawn service and we'll have some control over weeds with regular mowing, regulating lawn height, and mulching the borders of the garden beds.  I'm sure many of you have other tips which we hope you'll share.   However, we know that stopping the use of herbicides will mean that dandelions and other invaders will start appearing on the lawns, and that weeds take work to control.  While some of you will applaud this as healthy diversity, we know that dandelions, Taraxacum officinale, with it's short bloom, spreading leaves, seed stalks, and deep roots have long been the hated enemy of the American lawn.  Perhaps it's time to reconsider.


In addition to the ongoing discussions, mentioned above the issue of herbicides came up this year due for two other reasons:

·  We'd like to achieve national certification for the new  butterfly garden and herbicides hinder the growth of many native plants on with butterflies and bees feed and reproduce

·  Genesis became a proud member of the Washtenaw Environmental Excellence Partnership.  The partnership calls for minimizing or eliminating the use of  chemical herbicides and fertilizers on  the grounds.

·  We've met with the Genesis board in March and received a unanimous resolution of support for embarking on this strategy, But we also want to hear from you.

Scores of you have participated in keeping our joint campus vibrantly green, in flower and attractive.  If you've not yet joined in, please do, what could be better than an afternoon outdoors of physical exercise and conversation.  Especially in this time of social isolation.  Please become a volunteer in maintaining our grounds.  You'll enjoy it and we need your talents and enthusiasm.  And and when you see dandelions by all means pull a few.   Welcome your comments and suggestions.  Email:


The Ground committee will be following up this article with an article with a signup sheet on how you can safely spend an hour or two outside working to care for our grounds, even in this time of social isolation.



Genesis Grounds Committee

Linda Annesley, Laura Wallace, MaryLu Barth, Eric Slosberg

Sarah Wiess, Phil Barr Co-Chairs


Dandelion, Taraxacum officinale is also used to increase urine production and as a laxative to increase bowel movements.  It's French name, It is also used as skin toner, blood tonic, and digestive tonic. ... In foods, dandelion is used as salad greens, and in soups, wine, and teas. The roasted root is used as a coffee substitute. It is a important springtime nutritional source for bees, butterflies and other beneficial insects.

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© 2019 Genesis of Ann Arbor

Genesis of Ann Arbor is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt corporation.


The Genesis Board of Directors, made up of congregants and clergy, is responsible for the management and maintenance of the building and grounds, on behalf of the two member congregations, Temple Beth Emeth and St. Clare's of Assisi Episcopal Church. They are supported by the Genesis staff.