Community Gardens – Are You Interested?

Mary Ann Ryan
Adams County Master Gardener Coordinator

(2/9) Community Gardens are popping up all over the country. Why? As people become more concerned about what they eat and what has happened to their food prior buying it, the desire to grow food that they handle and grow themselves is evident. By participating in a community garden, the gardener not only grows their own food, but also has an opportunity to meet new people, learn more about gardening, and have an opportunity for exercise, fresh air, and relieve stress from their daily lives. In urban settings, it becomes community beautification, an increase in property value, reduced crime, and community cooperation.

By definition, according to Webster, "a garden is Land for the cultivation of flowers, vegetables or fruit." A community is "A group having the same common interest; fellowship." This is exactly what our community garden is: a group of people wanting to cultivate the land to grow crops of their interest, while learning more about gardening and each other.

Not only does this garden provide food for the gardeners’ families, but it provides knowledge of food production that can be passed from generation to generation. Help and gardening advice is shared among the gardeners. Stress is relieved from the sheer joy of the gardening experience and friendships are made.

With the support of the Adams County Conservation District, rain barrels were procured for use in the gardens. These rain barrels are attached to the downspouts of a nearby storage building, and when full, are moved throughout the garden for the gardeners to use.

As a gardener, we know that proper tools become very important in our daily chores of planting, weeding and irrigating. A garden shed is available for all gardeners to store their tools and other gardening needs. This shed is a two-fold opportunity, as it not only provided storage, but it has a green roof – a roof planted with plants – for water conservation education. Information concerning green roofs will be available at the garden shed.

Adams Eden Community Garden, located at the Agricultural and Natural Resource Center in Gettysburg, has been providing many gardening opportunities for the residents of Adams County. The garden will be starting its eighth season this March with 15 garden plots, 20’ x 20’ in size. Many gardeners will be returning, although a few garden plots will be open for new gardeners.

If you are interested in a garden plot and participating in the Adams Eden Community Garden, contact Penn State Extension at 334-6271, 670 Old Harrisburg Road, Suite 204, Gettysburg for an application or more information.

Join us in gardening.

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