Plots Available in Woodstock’s Community Gardens

by Amanda Kuhnert

Despite the view from your kitchen window, gardening season is only a few weeks away. If you need a little extra motivation to start preparing your garden bed, remember: a home garden isn’t just good for your health, it’s also good for the environment.

How does our dependence upon store-bought food affect the environment? Most produce travels an average of 1,500 miles before it lands in your refrigerator. The arsenal of semi-trucks transporting produce from one end of the country to the other are primary sources of greenhouse gas emissions. From transportation alone, just one pound of produce releases 0.18 pounds of CO2 into the atmosphere.*

Buying locally helps reduce the number of trucks on the road. Growing our own food makes an even bigger impact.

These statistics should empower home gardeners: A 10-by-10 foot garden could produce enough fresh veggies to keep 27 pounds of CO2 out of the atmosphere. Better yet, home gardeners who replace 20 percent of store-bought food with produce from their backyard reduce their carbon footprint by 68 pounds of CO2 per year.

Woodstock’s community gardens

Community gardens are a great way to grow food, flowers, and herbs in the company of your neighbors, all while reducing your carbon footprint.

If you’re interested in securing a plot at one of Sustainable Woodstock’s two community gardens, email director@sustainablewoodstock.org or call 457-2922. Registration forms and guidelines are available on our website: https://www.sustainablewoodstock.org/our-programs/gardens/.

The gardens, used by more than 25 families and organizations, are located at Billings Farm in Woodstock and King Farm in West Woodstock. The basic plots are 4-feet by 32-feet, but many gardeners use several plots. Gardeners pay a small fee to cover garden preparation and maintenance costs. Each gardener agrees to maintain his or her own plot and to help maintain the garden as a whole by committing to two work days during the season.

We are grateful to our community partners who make land available for our use–Chippers, Billings Farm and Museum and the Vermont Land Trust at the King Farm location.

Upcoming events for gardeners

Green Drinks: Local Community Gardens and Food Security
Presenters: Master gardener Anne Dean and Cassidy Metcalf
Date: Thursday, April 18, from 5 to 6 p.m.
Location: Billings Farm, Community Garden

Interested in becoming an organic vegetable gardener? Join us at Billings Farm community garden to learn how to grow your own food at home or on a community garden plot. We’ll discuss the numerous benefits of gardening and the particulars of how to get started. You will also learn tips on growing a lot of food on a little land and how to turn your lawn
into an edible landscape!

Green Drinks are free and open to everyone. Snacks provided! Email zach@sustainablewoodstock.org if you have any questions.

Free Composting Workshops
Master Composter Cat Buxton will answer questions and fill your head with fascinating information about composting.
When? Thursdays from 6:30 to 8 p.m.
When and where? April 25 at Ascutney Outdoors Center; May 9 at Bridgewater Grange; May 16 at West Fairlee Town Offices; May 30 at Pomfret Town Offices; June 20 at Hartford Municipal Building.

Get one Soil Saver composter per household for only $30. Sure-Close kitchen pails for $5. Pre-registration is very helpful but not a necessity. Call Ham Gillett at 674-4474 or email hgillett@swcrpc.org. Sponsored by the Greater Upper Valley and the So. Windsor/Windham Counties Solid Waste Management Districts.

DO JUST ONE THING: Make gardening part of your summer plans.

Sources: theecoguide.org, cabaus.org.

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