The Community Garden

Grange Garden Tour from Margaret Emerson on Vimeo.

The Broomfield Crescent Grange community garden is based on permaculture principles of no-till, organic gardening that is restorative to soil, plant and animal ecology. This is an organic garden — no herbicides or pesticides are used and only natural fertilizer is used (manure or compost).¬†Volunteers work in a communal fashion, meaning no one rents a plot or “owns” a piece of the garden. We all contribute to soil building, expansion, planting, “weeding”, harvesting and consumption of the produce we grow in the garden. ¬†In 2013, we donated more than 800 pounds of surplus organic, fresh produce to FISH. There are beehives on the property, courtesy of HoneyBee Keep, and the bees helps tremendously in keeping our vegetable plants and fruit trees pollinated. We are currently experimenting with prolonging the growing season with a small hoophouse, which is also utilized in the summer months for vegetables that prefer hotter, more humid conditions, such as tomatoes or cucumbers. The garden is watered by SpritzWiz technology, an above ground pulse-drip irrigation system.

bees-and-donCurrently, we have about a dozen or so volunteers that work the garden almost year-round. The busiest time of year is June through September, obviously, but we also do some garden maintenance and expansion in the fall and spring.

If you’d like to become a volunteer at the garden, please contact the current garden coordinator of the Grange at nicmq@hotmail.com . We ask that you contribute at least two hours of your time per week (times and days that are convenient for you) in the busy months of June-September to weeding, hand-watering, harvesting or planting. Most tools are provided on scheduled project days, however, you will need your own work gloves.

For more information about the way we grow food at the Crescent Grange, visit the Living Systems Institute’s web page about no-till, no water, no weed style food production¬†here.

Planting seeds in the spring.

Planting seeds in the spring.

A schematic of the Grange garden design. It's circular to accommodate the SpritzWiz irrigation system.

A schematic of the Grange garden design. It’s circular to accommodate the SpritzWiz irrigation system.

 

The garden in 2012. A variety of vegetables are grown together.

The garden in 2012. A variety of vegetables are grown together.

Tending to young plants in the spring.

Laying down cardboard before sheet mulching (soil building). Cardboard is a natural weed barrier. In contrast to tilling or digging, this method retains the integrity of the soil ecology and does not require heavy equipment.

Laying down cardboard before sheet mulching (soil building). Cardboard is a natural weed barrier. In contrast to tilling or digging, this method retains the integrity of the soil ecology and does not require heavy equipment.

 

Summer of 2013 was a great year for squash and cucumbers!

Summer of 2013 was a great year for squash and cucumbers!

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