Gardeners and community members, we encourage you to support our friends over at the Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture by enjoying their annual Harvest HootenannySaturday, Sept. 24! The CCUA is a great community resource for gardeners and a great partner to the Community Garden Coalition. The Hootenanny is their biggest fundraiser of the year, AND a whole lot of fun!
Normally each year in early spring, the Community Garden Coalition organizes a seed-packing party to package up bulk seeds which we then distribute to gardeners largely at our Spring Thaw public event. With the COVID pandemic still in play this spring, neither of those events were safe for us to hold. We DID get seeds distributed to our gardeners, however, thanks to all of our board members and several volunteers! Here’s a run-down of all that went in to making that happen.
First, Bill McKelvey drove down to our supplier, Morgan County Seeds in Barnett, for a socially-distanced seed purchase. Next, he made up packages of seed-packing supplies for our volunteers with the help of Jenny McDonald. Our helpful volunteers picked them up, packed the seeds, and then returned them to Cheryl Jensen, our newest board member. In the meantime, Sarah Kendrick put together an online seed ordering form that allowed participating garden leaders to request seeds for their gardeners. Those results went to Cheryl who did her best to meet everyone’s requests. When the seeds were organized for each garden, she then made arrangements for a seed pickup at her home. Whew!!!
We want to thank all our wonderful seed-packing volunteers in no particular order: Linda Coats, John Coats, Ann Marie Gortmaker, Lily Chan, Barb Onofrio, John Markovitz, Joe Horner, Mila Horner, Don Day, Sarah Kendrick, Abram Kendrick, Mira Stoddart, Cynthia Hoover, Anne Jacobson, Penny Sprochi, Marty Katz and Cheryl Jensen. In addition, we thank our garden leaders who’ve had to be more hands-on in picking up seed and plant orders for their gardeners! THANKS TO ALL!
Additionally, yours truly got us a grant from our local Sam’s Club that is helping us cover the cost of our seeds and related expenses for this and next year. Thank you very much, Sam’s Club!
How’s that for successful teamwork? In my mind this just confirms what I already knew — the Community Garden Coalition is part of the magic that makes Columbia such a great place to live!
Winter may be ending but there’s no Spring Thaw this year!
Well, gardeners, we are sorry to say it, but, due to pandemic restrictions, we were not able to hold our annual community gardening kick-off event this year. The Spring Thaw, CGC’s biggest annual event has been going on for as long as anyone on the board can remember. (We got lucky last year, as it was held mere weeks before the COVID-19 pandemic lock-down began.)
Typically, at the Spring Thaw, newcomers are able to get connected to a new garden, returning gardeners get organized with their garden leaders for the new season, and gardeners are able to pick up seeds and how-to information. In the absence of this event, we have packaged and distributed seeds directly to garden leaders. In addition, if you haven’t told your garden leader that you want to continue gardening with us, please let them know immediately as there may be others waiting for plots! And, finally, if you or someone you know would like to start gardening at a community garden, you can request a space via this short form and we will do our best to find a plot for you!
As you get started with your garden, here are some opportunities and resources for learning more about how to grow your favorite veggies.
The final session of the Mid-MO Expo is happening today (Saturday, March 13) online. For just a $6 fee, you can learn about “Dealing with Nuisance Wildlife.” Arrangements can also be made to view the recorded session on “Invasive Plant Identification and Removal.” Register here.
The Unite4Health community garden is planning to host a workshop later this spring with a soil scientist to discuss organic gardening and increasing beneficial microbes. Details to be announced soon.
For a more in-depth learning option, MU Extension is offering the online course “The Beginning Gardener-Getting Started with Vegetables 2021” through April 17 for a $40 fee. Details and registration here.
The Spring Thaw has always been a fun time for all, and we are sorry to miss seeing all your excited, smiling faces this year!
The Spring Thaw is the kick-off to the community gardening season. There will be representatives from all the gardens, so you can join a garden as a newcomer or confirm a plot assignment for previous gardeners. Plus, everyone can network and get gardening advice from other gardeners.
There will be educational information about cover cropping and water conservation, and we’ll have a free seeds available for gardeners at member gardens.
If you know someone who’d like to get a community garden plot this year, please share these event details!
A HUGE THANK YOU to everyone who supported community gardens during the CoMoGives local donations campaign!!! Whether you were able to give $10 or $200, or even just passed on our message, we are very grateful for your support!
We’re excited about a new year of gardening and hope that we can supply lots of new and continuing gardeners with the means to grow some of their own food in 2020. Our first meeting of the new year happens Wed., January 8 at the Columbia Public Library at 7 p.m. We welcome funding requests from member gardens, and we’d be happy to meet any volunteers who’d like to get involved.
Wildlife experts from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, MO Dept. of Conservation, University of Missouri, and the City of Columbia will talk about pollinator conservation challenges, habitat restoration, and policy that are occurring at all levels of government.
Come for the entire event or just for a little bit. All are welcome including children.
It’s time to plant all those delicious heat-loving veggies like tomatoes, peppers sweet potatoes and eggplant! For community gardeners, the CGC’s plant and seed distribution continues Sunday, May 12, so make some time to come by and get what you need to fill out your garden and fill up your plates this summer.
Plants are free to member gardeners, but we welcome donations of 50¢/plant to help offset the cost. Row cover and hoops will be available for sale. Plus, we still have lots of seeds to offer you for various vegetables and herbs!
Jardineros/as: Tendremos una distribución de plantas para la temporada cálida el domingo 12 de mayo de 10-12. Las plantas estarán disponibles por una donación de 50 centavos cada una en el Jardín de Claudell. Tendremos tomates, pimientos, berenjenas y camote.
It’s time to plant all those delicious heat-loving veggies like tomatoes, peppers sweet potatoes and eggplant! For community gardeners, the CGC will host a plant and seed distribution this weekend, so make some time to come by and get what you need to fill out your garden and fill up your plates this summer.
Plants are free to member gardeners, but we welcome donations of 50¢/plant to help offset the cost. Row cover will be available for sale. Plus, we still have lots of seeds to offer you for various vegetables and herbs!
Jardineros/as: Tendremos una distribución de plantas para la temporada cálida el sábado 11 de mayo de 10-2 y el domingo 12 de mayo de 10-12. Las plantas estarán disponibles por una donación de 50 centavos cada una en el Jardín de Claudell. Tendremos tomates, pimientos, berenjenas y camote. Si necesita semillas, estas estarán disponibles los mismos días a la misma hora, o puede contactar a Mira a su email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Suggested donation of 50¢ per plant. There is a limited supply of plants and when they’re gone, they’re gone, so we suggest you arrive as early as you can for the best selection!
Cool season plants will include broccoli, cabbages, cauliflower, lettuce, chard, and kale. There will also be row cover and hoops available for purchase for 25 cents/row cover foot and 25 cents/hoop. And, we have bales of straw for mulching at member gardens (suggested donation of $3).
Also, please understand that this distribution is intended for community garden members only. While others will not be turned away, sending plants with non-member gardeners means less for members, and they are our primary responsibility.
Each Saturday morning, the Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture and community partners will be offering workshops for beginning gardeners at Parkade Center (the temporary home of the Farmers Market).* You can check out “Planning & Planting a Spring Garden” next Saturday, March 9 at 9 a.m. and again at 10:30 a.m.