Friday, February 28, 2014

2014 Gardening Season Starts on April 12

[Editor's Note:  With just under 2 weeks to go before our Opening Day, we have only 2 plots left (and 6 raised beds).  Once those plots and beds are taken, gardeners will be placed on a wait list because every year we have gardeners sign up who do not show up for our Opening Work Day.  You snooze; you lose:-)]

Even though it seems that March will be entering Central Ohio like a lion, the Stoddart Avenue Community Garden is planning to open in six weeks on April 12, 2014.  Gardeners who are interested in reserving their own plot to grow their own vegetables, fruits, herbs and flowers should complete, sign and return an Application along with $10/plot (preferably by check made payable to the Stoddart Avenue Community Garden).  Families in the Stoddart Avenue neighborhood are eligible for a full scholarship if the fee presents a financial hardship. 

Gardeners’ participation is subject to the SACG Garden Rules as well as some rules by the City of Columbus (prohibiting, for instance, being in the Garden at night, and bringing alcohol onto Garden property, etc.).  Gardeners are also encouraged to donate a portion of their produce to area food pantries and shelters, like Faith Mission, Lutheran Social Services and the Salvation Army.
2013 SACG Opening Day Volunteers
Joining the SACG is not terribly time consuming, but Gardeners should plan to help set out the Garden on Saturday, April 12, 2014 (with a rain/make-up date on Saturday, April 26, 2014) and to close the Garden (probably on Saturday, November 8, 2014).  Gardeners should also volunteer for three chores to perform for one month over the summer (like watering flowers, tending the food pantry plot, pulling weeds in the paths, mowing our lawn, picking up litter, etc.) 

We will start working at 9:30 a.m. on April 9, 2014 to flip and spread compost, spread wood chips on the Garden paths and around the fence rows, transplant raspberry bushes, hang some fence and possibly plant fruit trees.   The more the merrier because many hands make light work.  You need not reserve a plot if you would just like to volunteer.   Refreshments will be provided courtesy of Whole Foods. 

2012 SACG Opening Day Volunteers
Unlike past years, gardeners may begin planting as soon as they would like – even before our opening day.   (However, even assuming that this weekend’s snow melts by next weekend, most of you will want to wait a few weeks before planting early Spring crops like   potatoes, onions, leeks, peas, lettuce, kale, spinach and greens.   I’ll be starting pepper seeds (indoors) and sweet potato slips next weekend and will share any extra seedlings with gardeners come May.
So, if you or someone you know likes to get your hand dirty and grow your own food, you are welcome to join us at the SACG.  Plots will be assigned on a first-come-first-served basis, with preference being given to gardeners from last year who volunteered at the opening and closing work days.

AND, although there are no guarantees, the Farmer's Almanac is NOT predicting a never-ending winter for Central Ohio this year.  Happy Days!  It is supposed to be a warmer and slightly drier Spring.

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