916-800-2099 info@crescentgrange.org     

Meet a Few of Our Members


 Question: You helped to design and build Scare-E the scarecrow when you were five years old. She needs a new outfit. What do you think will be her fashion choice this year?

Devyn: I feel like we should get into making it like a joke and put sweatpants and a sweatshirt on her, or pajamas. Basically, quarantine style. She needs a mask for safety, and slippers. Scare-E has always worked from home. We could decorate one of the wheelbarrows with a computer. It would be a timeless classic.

Question: You’ve practically grown up in the community garden. How do you think spending so much time learning about plants and digging in the soil makes your life better and more fun today? And how do you think those experiences will impact you in the future, as an adult?

Devyn: It gives me something to look forward to. It shows us the wonders of Nature’s creations. I like to catch bugs and watch them. Watering the garden is fun. It makes me feel like I’m contributing to the community. I like skipping along all of the paths and exploring the back of the property and things like that. I like seeing how the weather has affected the garden. I also like talking to new people. The vegetables make it easier to talk to new friends. When it goes wild, there are so many places to hide. I want to keep taking the produce to the food pantry FISH. We can all have plenty and share with our friends.

With the path I want to take studying ocean life, it will help me to understand how to connect with nature better. Living next to a Grange contributes to my wild side. I think that will definitely come in handy, knowing how not to scare things when I approach them. That’s a skill I’m practicing. It doesn’t always work well, but I do. I’ll always want to give back to my community. It encourages us all to be more social. It helps to connect us with other people. When we  are planning and organizing and are doing important work, it  makes us all want to do even more and be better. It makes us feel more confident about ourselves and our surroundings, I think.

Question: I remember the time you rescued a cold bee from water and let it crawl around on your hand for nearly half an hour while it warmed up enough to fly. It was so sweet to watch you sing to the bee to help it feel calm and loved. Why do you think it’s important that we have bee hives and a pollinator garden at the Grange?

Devyn: Because with the pollinator garden we are helping butterflies, caterpillars, and moths and making a greener future for everyone. We’re helping them grow and thrive in this changing environment. Bee hives tell everyone else, using their body language and living in the hives, that this is a safe place. Also, the bee hives and pollinator garden are vibrant and add a cheerful nature to the Grange. 


 Question: What was your favorite vegetable as a kid, and was it connected to a particular family member or memory? What is your favorite vegetable now?

Ali: Beet, Cucumber & tomato as my mother used to grow in our small family backyard garden and we used to enjoy them very much.  These veggies bring back good memories of my mother.

Question: You joined the Grange’s garden the first year of the pandemic. One of the greatest joys is in coming together to share in the labor and rewards of tending the garden. Were you still able to gain a sense of shared goals and community, even in an unprecedented gardening season?

Ali: Grange Garden for me was a great place to keep my sanity by going to garden and enjoying group work and connecting to Earth.

Question: Even though our beds are a shared space, we love to encourage the planting of crops desired by all of our members. You brought some unique seeds to the Grange’s garden last year, can you talk about why you wanted to grow them and how they are special?

Ali: Thanks to the group for letting me plant my favorite veggies Persian cucumber, zucchini and tomatoes. As we all know most of the veggies need long daily hours of sun and the garden was amazing in providing whole day sun and had great crops and I enjoyed sharing with the group and some with non-profit organization FISH.


 Question: Not every prospective gardener is excited about kale and peppers. What does the Grange’s community garden have to offer to folks who have gardening interests outside of edible crops? 

Diane: There are so many ways to garden, besides growing vegetables.  At the Grange, we have a pollinator garden (to grow flowers, which attract and feed bees) as well as a medicine garden- growing herbs, and plants with medicinal properties.  Additionally we have fruit bearing bushes- blackberries is one of my pet projects, as well as fruit trees.  Another venture is we grow broomcorn, which is the crop that gave our city its name.    And there is an opportunity to add other projects, depending on the interest of the gardener.

Question: Your strength in the garden has been your background and knowledge of decorative and non-edible plants. Can you speak to what you saw when you first joined the garden, and your vision to guide these aspects of property in years to come.

Diane: When I joined the Grange garden, our volunteer base was low, so I met a space full of weeds, with a small garden struggling to hold its own.  It is astonishing what a bit of care will yield.  We no longer have waist high Canada thistles going to seed, and have native plants returning.  We have a great garden foundation-our soil, and the people that tend it.   We have a good base of perennial plants and flowers that define and beautify our space.   Going forward, I hope the garden continues to grow into a space where people can experience the patience and abundance of nature in an increasingly busy and noisy city.

Question: What do you remember as being your favorite group project or activity in the garden?

Diane: One of the best parts of volunteering in the garden is the chance to meet and learn from other gardeners.  Last fall, we had such an early frost warning, and all sorts of folks showed up to cover the garden and protect it from frost.  We got very creative in materials used, and nothing froze. There is something about working together in a group to a common goal that is so rewarding.  I am especially pleased when our crops are so abundant we take extras  to the food pantry.

Jessica & Beau

 Question: What do you think would be the ideal garden crop for engaging in a spirited food fight?

Jessica and Beau: We debated several vicious ideas – stinging nettles, giant squash, rotten cucumbers, okra (Beau is not a fan of this one, Jessica loved growing it for the 1st time last year). Ultimately we concluded we could never use the Grange garden crops for food fight fodder because so much love and care is put into them by so many fellow Grangers.

Question: As a couple, and as individuals, what do you see as the greatest benefits to spending time in the garden?

Jessica and Beau: Jessica loves the garden as a break from the “normal” and as a way to connect to her family’s midwestern roots. Beau appreciates the fresh food and getting dirt under his fingernails. Together we enjoy the opportunity to do something active together, to give back to our community and to contribute to the history of our hometown. Each new thing growing is a little miracle and the mystery of the communal plot adds some excitement to the mix. We have to set a timer (or use the sun as our timer) so that we don’t spend ours and hours each time we are there!

Question: Broomfield Crescent Grange’s garden has some larger goals beyond seasonal crops such as sharing with our local food pantry FISH, enhancing and beautifying the property around the historic building, and creating a sense of belonging, togetherness, and purpose within our community. Could you talk about how these projects enhance your experience as members?

Jessica and Beau: It’s amazing to see how much can get done with some hard work. We value that the donations going to FISH are giving healthy, local food to people who need it. We joined the Grange partially because we inherited the mantle from our mothers, who are both active Grange gardeners, but mainly to give back to Broomfield as new homeowners here.

Knowing we were working on something with our family and neighbors made 2020’s hardships more bearable because we knew we weren’t alone. We both look forward to live music (especially featuring Beau and his dad playing together), gathering with our village at the Grange again and the hustle of spring in the garden.