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Bringing Life to Urban Spaces: The Living Wall in downtown Statesboro

Located in “The Alley” beside the FabLab downtown, The Living Wall stands as a symbol of sustainability and community collaboration. Initiated by the Georgia Southern University Business Innovation Group (BIG) and Center for Sustainability, this project has thrived over nine years, driven by student involvement and the recent efforts of new community liaison Tysone Radford.

In 2015, City Campus secured a sustainability fee grant, kickstarting the transformation of the alley next to 58 E. Main St. into a vibrant symbol of innovation and environmental stewardship. Georgia Southern students have played a pivotal role in nurturing the Green Space, fostering a culture of gardening and sustainability within the community.

Tysone Radford, a Georgia Southern sophomore studying construction management, assumed the role of community liaison in the spring semester. Charged with revitalizing The Living Wall, Radford has focused on introducing new plant life and maintaining existing greenery.


Reflecting on the project’s progress, Radford acknowledged some of the challenges encountered, “When I first came in, it was a little barren, just coming out of winter and the result of some over trimming beyond our control, but it’s been rewarding to see it turn around,” shared Radford.

Under Radford’s stewardship, The Living Wall has seen the introduction of lemon balms, rosemary, and various mint varieties including peppermint, sweetmint, and spearmint, all serving practical purposes in teas and cooking.

Radford expresses his aspiration to expand the variety of herbs and enhance the Green Space with innovative features like floating pots and an improved irrigation system.

Furthermore, Radford emphasizes the Green Space’s role as both a communal gathering place and an educational resource.

img_5446“One of the main missions of the alley is to provide fresh edibles and herbs to the community,” he states. Through hands-on involvement, visitors can learn about sustainable practices and the journey from seed to plate.

In addition to their main bed, they also maintain multiple other beds and large pots. The alley is also home to two blueberry plants, an olive tree, a lime tree, and a lemon tree. “Interestingly enough, we also have another lemon tree back on campus, and there’s a certain radius that trees have to be within to pollinate; Well this cool thing is, these two are just within that mark, so we’ll actually be getting some lemons here,” Radford noted. 

Radford, who plans to maintain the position throughout his time at college, has big hopes to see the wall and its volunteer group developed. As far as the physical space, he hopes to plant more muscadines and flesh out the wall, integrate floating pots, and develop a more efficient irrigation system. Additionally, he emphasizes sustainability by reusing and recycling materials, such as upcycling wine bottles to create watering systems for the beds.


Another goal is to see community involvement continue to grow through partnerships with schools and initiatives like having kids paint pots or learn gardening basics. “The living wall is a great place for collaboration,” Radford expresses, “I would love to see more people come out here, not even to help, but also just to enjoy it and experience it. To sit with nature, and be present for a little bit.”

The Living Wall initiative wonderfully showcases the power of collaboration and grassroots efforts in fostering sustainability and community engagement.

Whether through volunteering, workshops, or simply enjoying the tranquility of nature, all are encouraged to come and visit The Living Wall.

For those inspired to join the movement, Tysone Radford extends a warm invitation. To learn more about getting involved, please contact Radford at and become a part of the initiative today.