Have you ever seen a community garden? Allow me to give you a brief tour of the one my spouse gardens at. It is located at Otsiningo Park, a county park near Binghamton, New York.
People can rent 20 x 25 plots for $20/year. The annual rent includes a spring plowing and water. We rent two, because we have a small home plot and and a lot of shade. Next year, we may cut it down to one plot.
The first several photos are of our plot, taken on July 4. The first picture is of Lacinato kale, also known as Tuscan or "dinosaur" kale. Looks unusual, doesn't it? Not all supermarkets (or farmers markets) sell this but it is a very good tasting variety.
Next, a patch of Jade bush green beans. You'll note from both pictures that our community garden ground is quite rocky. The soil is far from the best, although we have tried to work organic matter into it over the years. (We can keep our plots from previous years.) This September, the garden will be closed down around the 16th and a one-time cover crop will be planted. The governing organization has never done this before and it is hoped it will help to improve our soil.
Our favorite bean, Sequoia, has been a total bust this year, with constant animal attacks.
We use the raised bed method and have for many years now.
Our community garden always had a problem with unrented plots going to weed. For the first time, it seems like almost all of the plots have been rented (or, at least, donated).
Is our community garden organic? Not yet, but this is another change coming, And I wonder how some of our neighbors will adjust. I will blog about that in the near future, too.
Community gardens can be found in many settings. Does your city/town have one?