2019 Community Gardens, growing your own food


My application to the city to develop a new community garden was recently approved. But instead of the smaller location I had requested, the city put the new garden in the new redevelopment of the local zoo. Fenced, new washrooms, underground sprinklers, and a very large plot. 5000 sq. ft. to start, with lots of room to grow. We are in the planning stages of developing the garden committee who will oversee the development, plot sizes, tilling, composting, etc. The city and CHEP pay for the initial development and provide the water and large composting bins free of charge. Once the garden has been developed, and the committee in place, residents are able to apply for a plot - which will be approx. 20x20 or 10x20. We hope to keep the rental costs per season under $25.

Do you have community gardens in your area? How are they developed? Are you a gardener?


Near the zoo? Plenty of fertilizer available! :grin::grin:


Zoo poo…is bagged and sold…I have to do a little research into that whether it is okay with vegetables or just for fertilizer to flower gardens, lawns etc.

I am hoping to grow the basics, lettuce, spinach, carrots, cucs, beans, tomatoes, beets and potatoes if there is room. I have a few herb pots on my deck so I don’t need to put them in the garden.

…I will put in a few tripods in to grow vertically and help with space…


The Village of Ravena owned some land bordering a short street that was more of a connecting street to two street that would otherwise have been dead-end streets. The woods start there and some ways in is a small, deep ravine that take run-off water from the surrounding area. Several years ago some village residents started a community garden there which was a good size garden. I think the hardest part was keeping the rabbits and deer out of it. :laughing: Excess produce was put out by the road for anyone who needed it. This lasted for several years, but suddenly the property was sold and someone built a large home on it. No more garden! :face_with_raised_eyebrow: Many people have their own gardens in their backyards or elsewhere on their property. They still set out excess produce on tables in front of their houses for people needing vegetables but can’t afford them to help themselves. Always lots of tomatoes, beans, peas, tomatoes, squash, etc… especially tomatoes. (I did say tomatoes, right?) :laughing:

My wife and I used to grow tomatoes (there you go!), beans, peas, red raspberries and black caps. But once we started babysitting full time, we had to stop. Maybe we’ll be doing a garden again this year - with some help from our granddaughters. Olivia started some bean seeds in school last year which we planted on the south side of their house. She was thrilled to be able to pick the beans when they were ready. Then it was just the matter of getting the girls to eat their beans! :laughing: Eva would taste one and say, “Ew! Gross! This is disgusting!” :rofl: That’s her favorite thing to say when she doesn’t like the taste of something.


Most of the city community gardens, including one exclusively, grow some produce for the local food bank.


There’s a Catholic church, St. Patrick’s, that is on the opposite side of the block from where the community garden used to be. When the garden was active, people would go the food bank at the church and then go around the block to the garden for vegetables. Alas, now they those people are stuff with canned vegetables… not fresh.


It is great we can contribute the “fresh” vegetables to those who need.


They’re called allotments her in the UK and in high demand last I heard (dating back to the first and second world wars I think); there’s usually quite a waiting list for these allotments I believe :thinking:
But I’ve never done it myself; I tend to just grow plants for the flowers :wink:

Never had much success with the beans, peas, tomatoes my children started in school, I don’t like using pesticides so the usually ended up feasting on them…well fed bugs in our garden :roll_eyes: :laughing:


Certainly a waiting list in my part of the country - one of my colleagues had his name down for a number of years before he finally managed to get one.

Same here, I try to grow bee-friendly (and other pollinators) flowers. And catnip for Dylan… the insects love that too, if he ever gives it chance to grow enough to flower!
Not sure why, but I’ve never done well growing veg, I always seem to end up with a small crop (both quantity and size), hardly worth the effort. Except tomatoes, I can grow tomatoes… shame I don’t really like eating them! :thinking:


The trick is to pour a little olive oil around the tomato plants. Slice some pepperoni and make 3 circles with it around each plant. Then sprinkle shredded mozzarella cheese around the plants. When the plants bloom, tiny pizzas all ready to pick and eat! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


LOL, the only teensy flaws with that plan are that I don’t like/eat either pepperoni or cheese!
I like your thinking though… :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes::pizza:


Make a white sauce and sprinkle broccoli florets around and now you have “white pizza!” :wink:


:rofl: Nice try, but…


I’ll stick to using the home-grown tomatoes in a simple pasta sauce! With strawberries and cream for dessert. Strawberries home-grown (self-set semi-wild plants, don’t know where they came from but they do produce some good fruit), cream from the local supermarket.


They were probably plain old wild strawberries - especially if you didn’t plant them yourself. I used to pick wild strawberries when I was young… a couple of years ago. :roll_eyes: Depending upon what type of soil they were growing in and how much water they received seemed to determine their size. Of course I had to fight off the birds to get some. They were very sweet.

When I was in high school I had made a strawberry patch in my our backyard. I planted “Giant Strawberries” (as the advertisement read). They were indeed giant! There was one that was the size of a baseball! I waited and waited for that berry to ripen. One morning I went out to check it before going to school and decided it was time to pick it - when I got home. That day my mother babysat one of my nephews for one of my older brothers. :neutral_face: When I got home from school I ran out back to pick that strawberry and it was gone! :anguished: When I went inside and inquired about it, my mother told me my nephew (2-1/2 years old) had picked it and eaten half of it. She said he did like it very much. :slightly_frowning_face: I had to settle on strawberries that were only the size of tennis balls to use for strawberry shortcake that evening. :unamused: The next spring my father told me I had to get rid of the strawberry plants as they were sending runners out all over the lawn. :face_with_raised_eyebrow: Never did forget watching that one particular strawberry grown though. :slightly_smiling_face:


There are many reasons to grow your own food…but what about food you eat that you cannot grow in your area. I live in a land locked province. At best I can purchase locally caught fish (a listing of the types http://www.southsaskriverstewards.ca/ckfinder/userfiles/files/Web%20SK%20Fish%20Sp_%20complete%201.pdf)
But salmon, shrimp, scallops would be purchased from the Pacific Coast/Atlantic coast.

I guess this now brings “label reading” to another level!


My 7-year old (8 in 5 days :birthday:) wants to grow green beans. She had some seeds left over from last year - which I kept here in an airtight container with some desiccant bags - and yesterday she informed me she wants to grow some so they can have beans with their dinner. :thinking: That’s strange… we could never get the girls to eat their vegetables, especially green beans and wax beans (yellow). No matter how I explain to them that they’re great with some real butter melted over them, or even plain, they would eat but one and that was it. Maybe… this year will be different if they grow their own? And maybe I can get them to eat some while they’re picking them? :smiley: I’m not betting my house on that one. :laughing:


I’m looking for a new variety of eggplant…anyone grow them? what type do you grow?


My DIL grew them until they put the addition on their house a couple of years ago - right where her garden was. :face_with_raised_eyebrow: I’ll have to ask her if she remembers which variety she grew. But knowing her she’ll just give me a blank stare. :neutral_face: :laughing:


Our peach tree produced its first fruit last spring. Eight peaches. I brought one inside and it was so delicious. I got distracted and didn’t pick the rest. Two days later they were gone! Not even pits on the ground. The animals that took them didn’t waste time sticking around to eat them! I wonder what animal would take the whole peach without eating them in place. Raccoons perhaps?


Or humans Perhaps? :frowning_face::hushed::hushed: