Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Why?

Potential benefits of a community garden include:

Food Production= food security and education- Community gardens enable people to have food in a national crisis situation by teaching through example and encouragement.

Nutrition- Research indicates that community gardeners eat more fruits and vegetables than those who do not.

Exercise- Physical activity is required to participate in a garden.

Mental Health- Interacting with plants and nature itself helps reduce stress and increase the gardener’s sense of wellness and belonging.

Community- Fostering a sense of community identity and stewardship among gardeners, the park’s community garden space could provide a place for folks of diverse backgrounds to interact and share cultural traditions.

Environmental Benefits- Increase biodiversity, reduce runoff from rain, recycle local organic materials, and reduce fossil fuel consumption from long-distance food transport.

Learning- People of all ages can acquire and share skills related to gardening, cooking, nutrition, health, culture, local history, etc.

Youth Empowerment- Community gardens provide a place for youth to explore gardening, nature and community.

Lengthened Income- Produce grown at the community garden will help local folks offset their grocery bill.

Crime Prevention- It is proven that community gardens can help reduce crime.

Property Values- Gardens of all kinds increase the value of properties than without.

Publicity- As part of the Outreach Committee, our garden will be toured by local newspapers, radio stations and other gardening groups.  

Above all, a community garden can provide a sense of satisfaction and health for all involved.

Basics

Happy Warm Spring Greetings! 

The Neighbors Helping Neighbors Community Garden’s first mission is to help local folks grow their own gardens, and second mission is to nourish and educate the public through the establishment and maintenance of a communal garden.

Donations of seeds, seedlings, tools, compost and basic how-to books will be distributed at Georgia Macy's garage on the Saturday's after the food bank/pantry distribution days, which are the second Fridays of the month, setting 2 major NHNG distribution days as:
April 12th

May 10th

Pick-up will be from 10-11AM. Any tools not picked up will be donated to the NHNG maintenance crew, and any books not picked up will be donated to the Hopkinton Library.


The community garden will be filled with seed and seedling donations that aren’t picked up by folks for their own backyard gardens. Recipients at the Hopkinton food pantry will be aware that the fresh produce was grown at the park by volunteers, and harvested early that morning for delivery. Samples of the cooked food may be offered, as well as recipes.

The local businesses and individuals that have pledged seeds, seedlings, tools, compost and time toward our goal are the following:

Stauffer Dairy Farm of Nicholville ----------------- tools, books
Agway/ Elliots of Winthrop ------------------------- seeds
Cornell Cooperation Extension Office ------------ seeds, informative handouts
Agway of Potsdam ------------------------------------ seeds
Whitten Farm of Winthrop --------------------------- seedlings
Slaters of Nicholville ---------------------------------- seeds and volunteer time in the community garden

If you would like to donate items for the Neighbors Helping Neighbors Gardening group, please send an email to NHNGarden@gmail.com or call Georgia Macy at 328-4168 to arrange a drop-off time. 

I have requested the use of a small plot of land at the Hopkinton/Fort Jackson Park to be used for a community garden. Members of the town board have not approved our use of the space yet, after I submitted a letter of request at the February 2014 meeting. *Update: it's been tentatively approved!

I have designed a 30X40 plot for the area to the left of the basketball court by the old entrance. We will need plenty of compost donated, which a local rabbit farm has offered to assist with. *See "Needs" blog post for more information.


It will be maintained by a group of volunteers, led by myself, Carlyn McKee, as the primary contact for the garden. The town board has requested a list of Volunteers who will be helping with the project. So far, 5 families (10 adults, 6 children) have committed time to participate on the various crews, including Maintenance, Events (work parties, neighborhood parties, and educational workshops), Outreach and Community Relations, and a monthly Harvesting for the food pantry crew (second Friday of the month- early mornings). I expect many more volunteers to participate, including sororities, fraternities, scouting groups, church groups and other families. If you would like to volunteer, please send an email to NHNGarden@gmail.com

A schedule and contact information will posted at the garden.


Calendar of Events


Ground-Breaking Establishment Work Party, and Annual Meeting hereafter
Saturday, April 26th, 10AM
May 24th- 10 AM Fence installation
May 25th- 10 AM Planting!

Maintenance Crew- Weeding, Tending, Watering
Bi-weekly
Garden Work Parties- Planting, Composting, Winter Preparation
Monthly
Neighborhood Parties- Potluck Picnics
Annual Harvest Party
Educational Workshops- North Country Gardening How-to, Cooking, Food Preservation
Monthly
Outreach and community relations crew- Garden Tours, Radio and Newspaper Interviews
Monthly
Harvesting for the Food Pantry Crew
Meet 7AM each second Friday of the month to harvest and deliver to Georgia Macy’s van.