Square Foot Gardening Forum

Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.


Search
 
 

Display results as :
 

 


Rechercher Advanced Search

Latest topics
» N&C Midwest: December 2016
by llama momma Today at 4:43 pm

» Tomato Tuesday 2016
by llama momma Today at 4:35 pm

» 2016 SFG in Brooks, Ga
by CapeCoddess Today at 4:02 pm

» CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing December 2016
by sanderson Today at 3:49 pm

» New England, December 2016
by CapeCoddess Today at 3:27 pm

» TrolleyDriver's Compost Thermometer
by trolleydriver Today at 1:04 pm

» Bon fires on the Levee
by Cajun Cappy Today at 12:17 pm

» Holy snow Batman!
by sanderson Today at 12:08 pm

» Mid-South: December 2016
by Scorpio Rising Yesterday at 10:26 pm

» Mid-Atl - Dec 2016 - Seed Catalog ?
by Scorpio Rising Yesterday at 10:24 pm

» Gardening in Central Pennsylvania
by Scorpio Rising Yesterday at 10:21 pm

» 1st Seed Catalog Arrived :)
by Scorpio Rising Yesterday at 10:15 pm

» Second Year SFG in Canada
by trolleydriver Yesterday at 4:06 pm

» Amaranth
by countrynaturals Yesterday at 12:06 pm

» Northern California & Coastal Valleys - What are you doing this month?
by countrynaturals Yesterday at 12:03 pm

» Garlic: Freeze, thaw, and heave
by donnainzone5 Yesterday at 11:14 am

» Live and learn
by jimmy cee Yesterday at 9:08 am

» AtlantaMarie's Garden
by countrynaturals 12/4/2016, 2:04 pm

» Mychorrhizae Fungi
by audrey.jeanne.roberts 12/4/2016, 1:28 pm

» December 2016 Avatar: Show your Winter Season Colors!
by Scorpio Rising 12/3/2016, 11:17 pm

» SFG not giving the results I expected
by No_Such_Reality 12/3/2016, 7:21 pm

» New Member
by trolleydriver 12/3/2016, 4:14 pm

» First season SFG results / lessons learned
by countrynaturals 12/3/2016, 10:36 am

» Eat Broccoli Leaves? Brussels Sprouts? Cauliflower?
by sanderson 12/3/2016, 2:55 am

» Winter's Coming!
by sanderson 12/3/2016, 2:53 am

» Dry versus fresh spices to infuse vinegar
by sanderson 12/3/2016, 2:50 am

» Senseless Banter...
by MrBooker 12/2/2016, 5:17 pm

» Blanching and Freezing Vegetables
by sanderson 12/2/2016, 4:59 pm

» Your Christmas wish list?
by sanderson 12/2/2016, 4:29 pm

» SFG Adventure of a first time gardener in ND
by sanderson 12/2/2016, 4:14 pm

Google

Search SFG Forum

Community Garden - Newbie

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Community Garden - Newbie

Post  Ez on 5/16/2014, 12:14 am

To all,


I'm a computer guy and never have been much of a handy man and specially not a gardener, but God has a way of guiding our life that is totally different from our plans...I'm in charge of the Garden Ministry since I can make layouts, calculations, blueprints, presentations, etc..


We came across this SFG method and would love to implement it. We have a big lot of about 125 feet by 140 feet. We would like to get a community garden going and get our neighbors involved and invite them for all of us to learn together and grow our own fruits and vegetables as a community.


We have child care and would like to get the children involved in gardening and have a little section for them also.


We feed the homeless twice a week and growing our own fruits and vegetables will help us a lot.


We would like to plan everything before anything is done. The lot is very uneven so we may need to level it. Other things to plan are irrigation (manual/automatic?), compost storage, greenhouse, barbeque/worship area, playground area, woodchip pathways? etc. etc.


Your expert advice will be greatly appreciated.


Thanks in advance,


Ez

Ez

Male Posts : 9
Join date : 2014-05-15
Location : Ontario, California

View user profile http://www.ontariobic.org/contact-us

Back to top Go down

Re: Community Garden - Newbie

Post  sanderson on 5/16/2014, 2:31 am

Ez,  This is very exciting.   Very Happy   First get a couple copies of All New Square Foot Gardening , 1st or 2nd Edition, by Mel Bartholomew.  This is the backbone of SFG.  I got my copies used from eBay and Amazon.  You will refer to them over and over.  If you can, post photos of the lot, indicating compass directions, location of water source. parking area, slope, etc.  A slope is not necessarily a bad thing for a large lot.  Natural drainage??  Fresno is fairly lenient about community gardens.  No expensive Land Use permit required.  Since vacant lots in neighborhoods can cause problems, having people visiting the lot is a good crime deterrent.  Gosh, this is exciting.

This is the contact information of the Community Gardens Coordinator, Fresno Metro Ministries, in Fresno, CA.  I had a nice conversation with Tom Matott at the Master's Garden conference this spring.  They have a comgar at an unused piece of land under the freeway in a low income zone. Being in CA, there will be handicap accessibility requirements for a certain percentage of beds (wheel chair friendly paths with raised beds).  Porta potties nicely disguised but with easy access for servicing. Also, depending on the ethnicity of the population served, there may be concepts not easily translated.  (Ex: Hmongs do not understand compost.")

Tom Matott, Community Gardens Coordinator.    tom@fresnometmin.org    559-485-1416

Keep us posted!  Very Happy 

sanderson

Forum Administrator

Female Posts : 12266
Join date : 2013-04-21
Age : 68
Location : Fresno CA Zone 8-9

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Community Garden - Newbie

Post  walshevak on 5/16/2014, 7:29 am

https://communitygarden.org/  
this is a link to a source for US and Canada

Kay

____________________________

A WEED IS A FLOWER GROWING IN THE WRONG PLACE
Elizabeth City, NC
Find more about Weather in Elizabeth City, NC
Click for weather forecast

walshevak

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 4310
Join date : 2010-10-17
Age : 73
Location : wilmington, nc zone 8

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Community Garden - Newbie

Post  AtlantaMarie on 5/16/2014, 8:45 am

Hi Ez.  Welcome!  Thank you for the work that you are doing!

It sounds like you've got a pretty good setup there.  Be sure to get lots of photos as you work (with people's permission to photo them).  It will make a great scrapbook/wall/motivational item for the folks helping.

Have fun & please keep us informed of how it's going.

AtlantaMarie

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 3774
Join date : 2014-03-18
Age : 53
Location : Buford, GA - Zones 7B/8A

View user profile http://www.defensivespecialties.com

Back to top Go down

Re: Community Garden - Newbie

Post  VJ72584 on 5/16/2014, 9:15 pm

I think this is a great idea.  Will you offer families a 4 x 8 box each? Planning is going to be the key and after just a few successful boxes more will want to get involved.  Having a water source is big.  A local church had offered some land for a garden but they had no water nearby.  Last year I saw a car there with about 40 gallon jugs of water in the back.  That was serious work just to get the water there and then you had to hoe weeds etc. I felt badly for them because most of the land was unused.  SFG has so much more potential. 

What will you put on the ground between your boxes?  Be sure to leave a wide enough path between them.  As long as you have a water source available people can water with a can as described in Mel's book.

Don't get discouraged if it starts off slower than you hoped.  It takes a little convincing sometimes before people believe you can grow a significant amount above ground in 6 inches of soil.

VJ72584

Female Posts : 89
Join date : 2012-01-28
Location : Darlington SC

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Community Garden - Newbie

Post  Ez on 5/19/2014, 12:53 am

Thank you all for your comments. It’s helped me lots already. I updated my layout based on your suggestions and we are very excited and can’t wait to get started. I’m advising to plan it very carefully before we do anything so we don’t do unnecessary work especially on a big project like this one.

Hello Sanderson, Thanks for all the info. I will get us a few of Mel’s books so we can all be on the same page. I tried to add photos on the original post, but it kept erasing my posts telling me my post was too long L I was a little frustrated since I had to do it several times and ended up not including any pictures after all. We definitely will look into what kinds of permits will be needed.

Thanks for letting me know about the handicap accessibility requirements we will definitely look into that also. The lot is right next to the church so restrooms will not be a problem.

Hello Kay, Thanks for that community link. It’s very informative J

Hello AtlantaMarie, We’re planning to go door to door with the surrounding neighbors and would like to get them involved. Thanks for letting me know about asking for permission on photos. I’ll make sure we include a permission section on the signup papers. Our church members are eager to start and you are right it will definitely lift the spirits of everyone involved.

Hello VJ72584, We have lots of space and depending on how many people get involved will depend the amount of boxes. I originally have it laid out with a quantity of 4 = 4 x 4 boxes per family, but it’s just my initial layout and may need to change depending on the community interest. We are trying to avoid “serious work” and make it fun for all involved.

At the moment our layout is setup for woodchips between the boxes and I have about 1 foot in between then and 2 feet every 4 boxes division. There is a 4 feet around the raised boxes for handicap people at the main entrance.

I really appreciate your words of encouragement and I thank God for having me come across SFG and this forum.

Ez

Male Posts : 9
Join date : 2014-05-15
Location : Ontario, California

View user profile http://www.ontariobic.org/contact-us

Back to top Go down

Google maps view

Post  Ez on 5/19/2014, 1:20 am


Ez

Male Posts : 9
Join date : 2014-05-15
Location : Ontario, California

View user profile http://www.ontariobic.org/contact-us

Back to top Go down

Water source from sprinkler line

Post  Ez on 5/19/2014, 1:25 am


Ez

Male Posts : 9
Join date : 2014-05-15
Location : Ontario, California

View user profile http://www.ontariobic.org/contact-us

Back to top Go down

Long view

Post  Ez on 5/19/2014, 1:27 am


Ez

Male Posts : 9
Join date : 2014-05-15
Location : Ontario, California

View user profile http://www.ontariobic.org/contact-us

Back to top Go down

growveg.com = Church of Second Chances Garden

Post  Ez on 5/19/2014, 1:32 am


Ez

Male Posts : 9
Join date : 2014-05-15
Location : Ontario, California

View user profile http://www.ontariobic.org/contact-us

Back to top Go down

Re: Community Garden - Newbie

Post  sanderson on 5/19/2014, 2:54 am

Ez,  You got some photos to post!  They really help a lot for us to be able to make comments and/or suggestions.

Hopefully, you won't need any permits because a Land Use Permit is very, very, very expensive!!  Every participating member will need to sign a contract, though.  There will have to be rules.

Looking at the plot, I assume the entrance (and water source) are in the SE corner.  The photo looks like it was taken in the morning.  The tree shadow in this SE corner would preclude locating the boxes any way.  A surfaced road up the East side, and across the South side then up the North would allow trucks to drop off bulk items, like wood, ingredients for Mel's Mix, compost for replenishing before each planting. etc.

Regarding the isles between the rows:  a minimum of 3 feet.  a minimum of 2 feet between family boxes.  Once you have the books, you will get a better idea how to set up the boxes.  Four 4x4 boxes per family is a lot if they haven't really gardened before.  Have you considered a mix of 4 x 8 and 4 x4?  Assign them hop scotch, so if they want to expand, there are empty squares available nearby.  Lay down weed fabric before the chips.  Over time, otherwise, the chips will be squished into the dirt.  It will also be easier to wheel a wheel barrow over chips it there is something under neath.

The only daily supplies people need to daily maintain the garden are scissors, pencil for planting seeds and a hand trowel, plus stretchy tape or twine to tie the plants to the stakes or trellises.  It would be great to have a little mail box/bird house for each family.  What about a shed for wheel barrows.  lugging buckets of compost half way across the lot will be hard work.  Not to mention wheeling the bounty back to the car!   Very Happy 

Water:  Buried 1" lines with 3/4 risers every 20-25' with a 25 foot hose and wand (or spray attachment).  Dragging a 50' around is heavy and messy.

Projects.  Row and box markers.  Row/box 1A, 1B, 1C, etc.  Saw solid wood boards into 4" x 6" plaque size.  The kids can paint them different colors of latex paint.  Just lightly pound 4 small nails to the back sides for ease of painting and drying.  Pre-drill 2 holes for screwing the plaques to the boxes and to posts at the ends of each long row.

Compost bins: an option to consider.  What else will everyone do with the plants at the end of the season?  If the 3-stall compost unit is on the south side, you shouldn't have any neighbor complaints.  Learn about composting.  Save the church coffee grounds!  Have a hose attachment close by.

Well, that's all for right now.  Oh, and a little bench, sitting area in the middle or off the the side where folks can sit and chat and compare notes.

Opps, you posted the plot plan while I was typing. Unfortunately the boxes (4 box unit) on the east, south and west side will need to be removed. For roads, and to keep out of shadows from buildings and fences. It looks like their will be a cover over the barbeque area. The kids' boxes are located north of it and some may be in the shade. Nice that you are having a play area.

sanderson

Forum Administrator

Female Posts : 12266
Join date : 2013-04-21
Age : 68
Location : Fresno CA Zone 8-9

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Community Garden - Newbie

Post  tagyourit on 5/19/2014, 12:13 pm

This really does look like an amazing project!   I agree with there needing to be more space between boxes, the compost and the benches.    I would also suggest just doing the 4x4 and letting people and families just sign up for how much they think they can handle.    Some families might only want a small salad garden while others might need more space.    The kids beds will need to be 3x3 instead of the 4x4 so that those tiny arms can reach from all sides and still get to everything.     What an exciting project.    Please keep us updated.

tagyourit

Female Posts : 48
Join date : 2013-05-01
Location : Little Rock, AR Zone 7B

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Community Garden - Newbie

Post  walshevak on 5/19/2014, 6:14 pm

check out this small community garden by a forum member

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t2996-modesto-central-valley-ca?highlight=apollo

Kay

____________________________

A WEED IS A FLOWER GROWING IN THE WRONG PLACE
Elizabeth City, NC
Find more about Weather in Elizabeth City, NC
Click for weather forecast

walshevak

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 4310
Join date : 2010-10-17
Age : 73
Location : wilmington, nc zone 8

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Updated layout from suggestions

Post  Ez on 5/22/2014, 1:12 am



Last edited by Ez on 5/22/2014, 1:23 am; edited 1 time in total

Ez

Male Posts : 9
Join date : 2014-05-15
Location : Ontario, California

View user profile http://www.ontariobic.org/contact-us

Back to top Go down

Irrigation Reference Parts List from Growveg.com

Post  Ez on 5/22/2014, 1:15 am


Ez

Male Posts : 9
Join date : 2014-05-15
Location : Ontario, California

View user profile http://www.ontariobic.org/contact-us

Back to top Go down

Re: Community Garden - Newbie

Post  Ez on 5/22/2014, 1:22 am

Hello Sanderson and Tagyourit, I tried to implement your suggestions and changed things around. I really appreciate the input. I’ll try to get the books ASAP. Thanks again.


Hello Kay, I checked out that Apollo Garden and was very informative also.


All your support is greatly appreciated,



Ez

Ez

Male Posts : 9
Join date : 2014-05-15
Location : Ontario, California

View user profile http://www.ontariobic.org/contact-us

Back to top Go down

Re: Community Garden - Newbie

Post  Sponsored content Today at 4:52 pm


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum