Above: Logan Primeau holds a handful of cherry tomatoes from his garden last year.
It has been a few months since I announced my intention to start a community garden in Stittsville and a lot has happened. Just before the holidays I started to collect bottles to raise money for the garden and received loads of donations from many people. All together $33 was raised during the first push, almost enough to build one raised bed. We will continue to collect bottles to fundraise for the project and welcome anyone who would like to donate empty containers to message us on Facebook or email us.
I attended the “How To Start A Community Garden” workshop in January which is offered by Just Food where the steps to get started were laid out. Just Food runs the Ottawa Community Garden Network and offers funding to projects that qualify each year. Our application was made and at this time we are awaiting news on that.
Many different sites for the garden were suggested to me. The Goulbourn Non Profit Housing Corporation was one such suggestion. They operate the Carleton Apartments on Carleton Cathcart Street in Stittsville which houses people aged 60+. The board approved my plan to build a community garden on their site which will include four raised beds, fruit bushes, a composting area, water storage area and a tool shed. The paths in the garden were designed to be fully accessible to wheelchairs and walkers and benches spaced evenly at the end of paths to provide a rest for weary gardeners.
Residents of the apartments will be able to participate and benefit from the harvest. All extras that are not needed or used will be offered to the Stittsville Food Bank to give to their clients.
There are still a few things that we require to make sure the garden is as successful as possible. We still need to get as many volunteers as possible to help out with certain key tasks. People will be needed to help build the raised beds and paths, people will be needed to plant the garden once it’s ready in the spring, people will be needed to weed and water the garden on a schedule and people will be needed for when it’s time to harvest during the middle and end of the season.
We are also looking for support from the business community in Stittsville. With the support of businesses in Stittsville we will be able to reach more people and build a thriving project which will drive a positive change. If you are a business owner in and around Stittsville consider extending your support and help us make 2016 the year Stittsville takes one step closer to food security.
We would like to extend a big thanks to everyone who has donated and helped us so far on our journey. If you would like to help out in any way or have any questions you can reach us by email at email@example.com.