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Winterville Community Garden

Winterville is proud to now host its very own city-sponsored community garden near Pittard Park - 2018 is our fifth year and we hope you will come going in for the fun!

Winterville Community Garden vision:

The Winterville Community Garden is a place for sharing gardening knowledge in a collaborative environment; promoting self-sufficiency; providing healthy and productive activities for members of our community; promoting a chemical-free and sustainable source of food and beauty; and fostering a sense of community in Winterville. 

What is a community garden?

A community garden is a piece of land gardened by a group of people for the production of fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers.

Why join a community garden?

  • Space to grow food
  • Experience the fresh air
  • Get some exercise
  • An opportunity to connect with your neighbors
  • Time with nature
  • Peace & relaxation
  • Share and improve your gardening skills
  • Save money by growing your own food
  • Enjoy pesticide-free food

How do I join the Winterville Community Garden?

For a modest fee, you can own a raised garden bed measuring 8 x 4 feet, shade-free and a food deep in fertile compost and soil mix. Each bed is ready to plant, comes with its own drip irrigation system, and is watered on an automatic timer. All you need to do is choose your favorite seeds, do the tending, and enjoy your harvest.

Please print the Community Garden Registration Form 2018 (.docx) or pick up a copy at City Hall and return the form with your payment. Please read the Community Garden Rules & Guidelines (.docx) as well.
This Garden Planting Schedule (pdf) may be helpful to you.

How much does it cost to join?

2018 Rentals: Payment for your plot is due by March 1st, and this will cover one whole year until the end of February 2019.  The rental fee is $40 for one year.

Please fill out the form and take it, together with your payment, to City Hall.  There will also be forms available at City Hall.  There are a few boxes vacant at the moment, and after March 1st, those, and any that have not been rented will be available to new gardeners.  So encourage your friends and neighbors to join us!

The “Rules and Regulations” is a separate document for you to keep for reference.

For more information:

Contact WintervilleCommunityGarden@gmail.com

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Garden Updates...

4-19-18-

Happy spring, fellow gardeners!

Thanks to Jean-Marie for the update on the food bank boxes and the Marigold Festival.  We want our upcoming work morning on Saturday, April 28, to be a fun one!  Beginning at 8:00 a.m. (it's fine to come later), we'll make things to carry in the Marigold Parade on May 12th--if we'll have enough participants.  We need gardeners and friends to let us know if you, and your children/grandchildren, can join us in the parade.  At 10:00, we'll have refreshments and a presentation on butterfly gardens from a UGA researcher.  We'd love to have as many gardeners as possible attend so we can get to know each other better, and we're always open to hearing your thoughts and ideas for the garden.

Ant Wars update:  So far it has been either too cold or too wet (or both!) to apply the garden-wide treatments, but we hope to get this done soon.  We need temperatures over 60 degrees followed by a few dry days.  In the meantime, there is some diatomaceous earth in the tool shed that you can sprinkle over the soil; or you can use a mixture of equal parts flour, sugar, and boric acid and sprinkle that around.  We realize the whole garden must be treated so the ants won't just relocate to other beds, so let's hope the weather will cooperate!

 
If all of the boxes don't get rented out this season, we will plant some for collective harvest by garden members only.  They will be marked at a future date.  It will be okay to pick from those beds as the produce is ready.  One bed may be a flower garden with zinnias for cutting.
 
It's time to plant!  The soil's not quite warm enough for heat-lovers like tomatoes, peppers, and okra, but many other seeds can be put in now, and it won't be long before the others can go in, too. UGA's Cooperative Extension Service has a great planting chart at https://secure.caes.uga.edu/extension/publications/files/html/C963/C963VegeChart.pdf.
 
Someone recently expressed concern about the use of treated wood in garden beds.  For some time now, wood has been treated without the toxic chemicals (like arsenic) that had been used in the past, and it is safe.  You can find more info here: https://www.epa.gov/ingredients-used-pesticide-products/overview-wood-preservative-chemicals.  We have also tested the water and compost used in the garden and gotten good results on those.
 
Recently an artificial owl showed up on the fence at the garden, but no one seems to know where it came from.  Because we don't want it chasing away the birds, it has been moved.  Please check with the committee before adding things to the garden or altering it.
 
Can we have a garden update without a reference to weeds?  Well, that will depend!  Let's all keep our beds and surrounding areas weeded so they won't get out of hand like last year, and see if we can't keep these updates weed-free, too!  =)
 
Thanks, and we hope to see you on April 28th!
The garden steering committee

 

4-18-18-

Hello my fellow gardeners!
My name is Jean-Marie and I am new to the WCG committee this year. I have an update and 2 invitations for you!
 
First-did you know we have 4 dedicated boxes now growing food for the Athens Area Emergency Food Bank? It's true--and more are in the works! This morning we harvested our first 5lbs of turnip, collard, and mustard greens, chives and kale! The food bank was very appreciative because they often don't have much fresh food to distribute. 
 
We'll bring food from the 4 boxes there once a week on Mondays throughout the spring and summer. You are invited to contribute any produce you like, too! Starting in May there will be a Sunday donation box under the white board at the front gate. Food will be collected Monday morning, so please leave food in the donation box for no more than 24 hours.
You are also invited to help plant and maintain the boxes during our community work mornings! Your help is greatly appreciated!
 
Second topic-the Marigold Festival! The WCG will participate in both the parade and craft show this year! Are you a crafter or seed starter? Please join us at the WCG booth at the Marigold Festival on May 12th. We have a booth to promote and raise money for the garden. You can set up your crafts in WCG booth with no upfront cost and table/tent provided with a 50/50 split between the crafter/garden. Stay as little or as long as you like! So far we are selling bath and body items, stained and fused glass & starter plants. The more the merrier! Please contact me directly if you would like to participate so we can arrange the booth space ahead of the festival!
 
Thanks everyone--happy gardening!
 
Jean-Marie Buxton (daisycakessoap@icloud.com)

3.24.18 -

Good Morning, WCG gardeners!  

Wonderful workday yesterday!  Thank you to everyone who came - a great turnout!  And a big thank you to the Hilsman students who joined us and worked so hard.  Together we achieved a lot and the gardens are looking clean and tidy - and beautiful.  
Another thank you - to all the gardeners - for keeping tools, wheelbarrows, and watering cans where they belong.  It makes a big difference to the appearance of the gardens.
 
Irrigation:  The length of time for each watering cycle has been decreased for now.  At the moment we have no automatic mechanism for turning off the system when it rains, and several of the boxes are clearly getting over-watered resulting in wet pathways.   We'll monitor it carefully, and adjust as necessary.  
 
Vacant boxes:  We still have 8 vacant boxes, and we can now open up these to gardeners who would like a third box.  If you would like another box let me know.
 
Weeds growing in garden beds:  A few boxes have a lush growth of .... weeds!   So just a reminder - Even if you do not grow winter veg., it is still your responsibility to keep your boxes free of weeds.  With so much help yesterday, we did clean out some neglected boxes, but if yours was one of these, you got lucky!  Beds like those definitely detract from the view and this will not be a normal occurrence!  We are getting help with our weed problem, but this doesn't include cleaning out boxes.  Please read your garden guidelines. Thanks!
 
The Shed:  Don't forget to look inside the shed when you come to the gardens, even if you bring your own tools.  We are building up a good little reference library, there are seeds and coupons for the taking, and we will soon have a notice board showing current events that might interest you.  And check out our bulletin board for information, too.
 
Hope to see you at the gardens soon!
 
Averil
(for the WCG Committee)

 

3/20/18 -

Good Morning WCG Gardeners!  A few reminders:

Workday:  This coming Saturday, March 24th.  Start time 9:30 a.m.  Note the later start time -because there will be a cycling event leaving Winterville at 9 am, and it would be better to avoid that traffic.  There’s lots to do – remembering this is a general maintenance work party, not time to work on your individual beds!  Potluck breakfast/brunch – bring something to share if you can.  Coffee will be provided.

Ant treatment:  Has been delayed because we need a combination of warm and dry weather for a few days.  Hasn’t happened!   Hopefully after tonight.  Supposed to get down to 32 deg. tonight.

Parking at the gardens:  Please DO NOT park in the area between the workshop/fire truck building and the gardens.  We’ll have signs up there soon.  Tom pointed out that if the firetrucks have to leave, they have to leave, and they won’t have time to look around for the owners of parked cars!  Also, the Works Dept. use very large trailers, and sometimes when they’re backing them, they can’t be super accurate!

For your calendar:  Athens Home & Garden Show will take place in Winterville this year!!  April 14th – all day.  During the H&G Show the Tree Commission will hold our own Tree Tour – 2-4 pm. (more about this soon).  All events at Pittard Park.

Stay warm!  Hope to see you on Saturday.

Averil

(for the WCG Committee)

 

3-12-18 - 

Good Afternoon WCG Gardeners  - 

This is to let you know that we will begin fire-ant treatment over the whole area of the Community Garden tomorrow.   We are using a recommended organic 2-step method, which will not affect your garden plants and is very safe.  If you would like to know more details please read the information below.

Fire ants:  As you will have read in one of our recent emails, we have a major fire-ant invasion at the gardens.  There are fire ants in almost every garden box, and around the periphery of the whole area.  They are much more aggressive than other ants, as you will have discovered if you have ever prodded a mound (not recommended!), and they have a very painful sting, which can cause severe allergic reactions in susceptible people, and explains their name.  They feed mostly on young plants and seeds.

Fire ant treatment:  This week we are treating the whole garden to reduce this problem, and eventually, with follow-up treatments, to eliminate it completely.

The usual method of treatment is a 2-step procedure.  First, a granular bait (which the fire ants take down to their nests) is applied to the entire area, and a few days later a drench is used on any remaining visible mounds. 

Because we are an organic garden, and it is especially important to use a product safe for edible plants, we are using an organic method.  The bait we will be using is Spinosad, which is certified by OMRI (Organics Materials Review Institute).  Spinosad is not particularly new, having been granted organic status by the USDA National Organic Program (NOP) in 2003. The drench will be limonene or another OMRI certified substance.

Some of you have already used diatomaceous earth, which works for ant trails and small mounds by drying out the outer surface of the ants, and has probably had some effect, but it is not very effective on large mounds.  Previous use of this won’t affect the Spinosad treatment.

Averil

 

3-5-18

SUMMER GARDENING: A garden discussion over coffee
When: Saturday, March 10th, 9:30am-11am
Location: We will meet at the community garden
~Please join fellow gardeners for a discussion on preparations for a successful summer garden.
We will cover: when to plant, soil preparation, late frost protection, amendments, staking/ trellising, and much more.

RSVP by Thursday March 8th if you want to attend to Holly at hollycam@uga.edu
Cancelled if raining.  

More questions: Holly Campbell, hollycam@uga.edu

(PLEASE NOTE:  Holly needs to know numbers so she can prepare enough  handouts etc.  So please do RSVP.)

 

2-24-18

Dear gardeners, 
 
After Monday's meeting, we realized there are ants in most of the raised beds. I'm sorry we didn't know then so we could discuss it with everyone at that meeting.  At the work gathering this morning (thanks to everyone who helped!), we agreed to enlist some aid in applying organic pesticides (limonene and another one I don't remember).  Some folks went ahead and applied diatomaceous earth in some places, so if you see white powder, that is what it is.  Sally donated some diatomaceous earth and it is in the shed.  An equal-parts mixture of sugar, flour, and boric acid is also good for getting rid of ants.  So if you want to go ahead and use an organic treatment on your individual bed(s), that would help speed the process.
 
We're also continuing conversations on the best way to deal with weed issues, and input on that is always welcome.  Some extra soil will be added to the pollinator garden on the southwest corner.  Averil is helping coordinate the plantings in that.
 
Thanks, and best wishes for a bountiful gardening year!
Brenda (Keen)

WCG committee chair

2-12-18

Hi folks,

If you’re planning to attend the upcoming garden-wide meeting and you haven’t already RSVPed, please email wintervillecommunitygarden@gmail.com no later than noonon Friday, Feb. 16.  We want to have plenty of food!

The menu for the evening (provided by garden funds and donations from the steering committee) will include lasagna (meat and veggie), salad, rolls, and dessert.  You can bring a dish if you’d like, but it’s not necessary.

Below and attached are an agenda for the meeting.  Remember you are not guaranteed a garden bed until your signed membership form is turned in and your payment processed.  You can bring those to the meeting if you’d like.  Forms, the rules you agree to, and a handy planting schedule are available at http://cityofwinterville.com/winterville-community-garden.  Payment must be cash or check.

AGENDA

Winterville Community Garden Committee Open Meeting

Monday, February 19, 2018 in the Depot

Meal starts at 6:00 p.m.; meeting starts at 6:30.

Welcome and Introduction of Committee Members (Brenda)

Q&A on garden rules and expectations for participation (what gardeners should give and get)

Plans for 2018 (Volunteers are welcome and don’t have to have a garden bed.)

            Update on available beds (Averil)

            Work days

            Pollinator Garden

            Food Bank donations

            Gardening classes (Holly)

Resources

            Shed – tools and books

            Seeds  – sharing and swapping

Announcements

    Arbor Day Celebration —Tuesday, February 20th, 1-3pm @ the Depot

    Community Input on Winterville Comprehensive Plan— Tuesday, February 20th, 6:30 pm @ the Depot

The Winterville Community Garden Steering Committee: 

Averil Bonsall, Jean-Marie Buxton, Holly Campbell, Sally Elie, Brenda Keen (chair), Nita Matthews-Morgan, Teresa Mills, Linda Russell, Bill Turner, Laurie Wilder

2-7-18

Good Afternoon, WCG Gardeners 

Please join us on Monday, February 19, 6:00 - 7:00 p.m. for our next WCG General Meeting.  The meeting will be held at the City Depot and is open to all our gardeners and anyone who is interested in gardening with us.  We'll serve a meal at the beginning and move onto our plans for the year.  If you have suggestions or questions, now would be the time to voice them.
 
Please RSVP so that we have an idea of how much food we need to provide.  Thanks.
 
We look forward to seeing you there.
Averil (for the WCG Committee)

 

1-19-2018

Happy New Year, WCG Gardeners!

It’s been a while since we’ve had good gardening weather, but it will be here again soon, and probably sooner than we expect.  So here is some information for you, and some dates for your calendar.  Time to start planning!

Saturday, January 27th, starting at 10:00 a.m. – First workday of the year.  This will be an excellent time to clean out the garden boxes and prepare for early Spring planting.

Monday, February 19th, 6-7 p.m. –  First general WCG meeting for all current gardeners and anyone who is interested in joining us for the upcoming year.  Details will be sent out later.

March 1st – Beginning of new WCG gardening year (March 1 – February 28).  There are some vacant boxes, and they will be assigned to new gardeners on a first-come-first-served basis.

Please note:

  • ALL gardeners must include a signed registration form with their payment.  Fees will not be deposited and boxes will not be available until this form is received.   The Registration Form and the WCG Rules and Guidelines are attached.  Please return the registration form and fee to City Hall (where blank forms will also be available).  For returning gardeners these are due on February 28th – but earlier would be helpful!)
  • The rental fee for the year is $40.00.  The increase is to cover hiring someone periodically throughout the year to tackle the weeds between boxes.  This will not release you from your weeding obligation, but should make it a very quick and easy job for you to keep these areas clean!
  • If you have decided that you will not be gardening with us this year – and we hope you have not! – please reply to this email to let us know – and please remember to clean out your box in time for a new gardener to get a timely start.  The January 27th work day would be a good time to do this – and you might even get some help!  A final clean-up is part of your WCG agreement.

A Vegetable Garden Planting Chart is attached.  It will help you with the best dates for planting your favorite vegetables.

We hope to see many (all??) of you at the January 27th workday.  We have some great plans for the year.

Enjoy your garden planning!

Averil (for the WCG Committee)

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