Community Pride  

Placerville, California

 " River of Gold '' Ore Cart


Located on the north side of Highway 50 & Bedford Avenue, the Ore Cart Garden welcomes visitors to  the abandoned gold/silver  mine at Gold Bug Park.  During the late 1800's, the residential neighborhood above the Ore Cart sprung up as downtown merchants  filled the Hangtown Creek Watershed ( canyon ) with cottages and Victorian mansions near their storefronts in Downtown Placerville. 

     The creation of the Ore Cart Garden was one of the first projects of Community Pride members in 1990.  Carol Patton & Rich Zito  designed the landscape & irrigation plans.   Kathi Lishman continues to care for this project through thick & thin; Caltrans Improvement Project required the removal of the entire ore cart project in 2010.  To date, the Ore Cart Garden is being restored, still again under the watchful eyes of Kathi!  

     Restoration efforts for the Ore Cart Project are funded by Caltrans mitigation funding from Highway Improvement Project(s). Future plans include blue marble chips to represent river rock. Vegetation will include crabapple trees with colorful drought-tolerant flowers to line the "river of gold" creekbed.

Caltrans Mitigation Projects

Gateway to the Sierra at Welcome Sign- the Gateway Project was established as a mountain-themed garden at the entrance to historic Downtown Placerville,CA.  The garden had dogwood, aspen, pine, Alburta Spruce, with seasonal & native flowers and a drought-tolerant lawn.  The garden overlies the abandoned Southern Pacific Railroad right of way.  Covering Hangtown Creek is a 1906 cement-form bridge, the oldest one of its kind west of the Mississippi River.

    The Wildflower Garden Project reaches from Main Street to the Schnell School Road exit along Highway 50 through Placerville.   Community Pride volunteer Josette Johnson secured the Caltrans Adopt-A-Spot on January 15, 1995.  The original goal  for the CA Department of Fish & Game, U. S. Natural Resource Conservation District, American River Conservancy, & Hangtown Creek Stewardship Committee was to recreate the "Flaming Gorge" theme, representing Placerville as the "Gateway to the Sierra!" Drought-tolerant, low-maintenance plants that change color with the seasons include: CA Poppies, Lupine, CA Fuchsia, Aspen, & Chinese Pistache.  Evergreens, white-barked trees, shrubs, flowers and groundcovers  provide colorful, viewscapes for passersby's along Highway 50.  

 Community Partnerships (Past & Present):  Placerville Girl Scouts of America, El Dorado High School, City of Placerville.

Caltrans Adopt-A-Highway