The Basics of Community Gardening
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As the name suggests, a community garden is an area of land where people can work together to grow vegetables, fruits, and flowers. Gardens like these are often located in areas like neighborhoods, schools, and parks, as well as churches and other sites for religious communities. Community gardens might feature traditional in-ground plots, raised beds, or structures as large as greenhouses or as small as a collection of containers like terracotta pots.
Community gardens have many benefits, including the obvious increase in consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables by those working in them, but also provide other important benefits like money saved by reduced grocery store purchasing, connections with like-minded people in your area, fitness and reduction of stress, as wells as skills that promote independence and self-reliance. Other benefits include beautification of one’s surroundings, as well as positive environmental stewardship.
An important consideration for community gardens is site selection, which involves selecting a safe and convenient location with access to resources like water, healthy soil, and abundant sunlight. Any food harvested from community gardens must be done so with safe and hygienic practices like washing one’s hands prior to harvesting and always using clean tools.
For more information on community gardens and how to establish one in your area, please contact John Lyttle at:
(252) 583-5161 (Halifax office), (252) 534-2831 (Northampton office), or John_Lyttle@ncsu.edu