Organic Community Garden Guidelines

Updated: Mar 20, 2021

MORRIS ARBORETUM/CHESTNUT HILL COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION

Organic Community Gardens Program at Bloomfield Farm

General Regulations 2021


ORGANIZATION AND REGISTRATION: MEMBERSHIP REMINDERS

  1. Gardeners must be a member of the Morris Arboretum and/or the CHCA when they register.

  2. Any plot not cared for by May 31st is forfeited. It will be reassigned on June 1st and there will be no refunds. Erecting a fence is not sufficient--cultivation must be evident. New gardeners are limited to one plot their first year.

  3. To preserve the view and vistas that the Arboretum works so hard to maintain, our garden fencing needs to be as unobtrusive as possible. NO ORANGE FENCING PERMITTED.

  4. To allow wheelbarrow access to all plots, the three paths from the parking lot, parallel to Northwestern Avenue, must be maintained as marked, as must the paths with the water pipes. Do not move plot markers. Weed your paths throughout the season.

  5. All members are expected to help on committee assignments or project days (e.g. spring set-up, fall clean-up) and to read the notice board for news and updates.

  6. The community gardeners may at an organizational meeting, or at any meeting called with 10 days prior written notice by the President, or by ten other gardeners, change these rules; except that these rules and any right to garden are subject to any decisions that may be made by our sponsoring agencies, the Morris Arboretum or the CHCA.


GOLDEN RULES: GOOD NEIGHBORS

  1. We are an organic garden. When you keep your soil healthy, your plants will be healthy, and we and the birds and animals will be healthy. Compost is provided; cover crops are encouraged. No chemical/synthetic pesticides or fertilizers are permitted.

  2. Registered gardeners are responsible for their own garden and for adjacent paths. Layering newspaper and wood chips, early and often, is encouraged. Do not place fences across paths; keep your paths weed-free throughout the season.

  3. Children are welcome with supervision. For their safety, please do not allow children (or adults) to climb in trees.

  4. Locate tall crops so that they do not cast shade on any neighbor's plot.

  5. Hose bibs between plots are shared by several gardeners. Buy a connector to share a hose bib with your neighbors, or disconnect your hose after each use. Keep areas around water pipes weed-free.

  6. Consideration and cooperation make the program work. Use discretion when listening to a device, keeping noise at a minimum.


ACCESS AND PARKING: SECURITY IN PARADISE

  1. Gardening stops at dusk.

  2. The community garden is the only part of Bloomfield Farm open to gardeners; the rest of the farm is off-limits.

  3. Get to know your fellow gardeners so that you may recognize unauthorized people. Visitors may be there to view plants, take photos, paint, etc., but if you notice suspicious activity, use your discretion to talk to the person, call another gardener, or call 911.

  4. Park in the parking area only. Please do not drive or park your car on the grassy areas. Fence rails along Northwestern Avenue are not to be disturbed.


WATER: USE, CONSERVE, MANAGE WELL

  1. Please be careful not to step on and damage the water system. Do not fence across paths; keep paths weed-free so pipes are in view. Pipes should not be buried by soil or wood chips unless at the path crossing. Water may run only while you are present to attend to it--no running unattended sprinklers.

  2. If you spot a leak, turn off the valve at the bottom of the path and immediately contact the water committee. Contact information is on the notice board.


WEEDS AND WASTE: IF IT WON'T ROT, TAKE IT AWAY

  1. The season runs from opening in the spring (depending upon soil wetness) to the weekend before or after Thanksgiving. Fencing may go up on or after opening day--notification of opening day will be emailed to everyone--checking you email is your responsibility. Plots and aisles are to be maintained throughout that period (until late November or early December). All stakes, stones, plastics, fencing and wire must be removed from the garden at season's end. All annual vegetation must be trimmed to the ground or removed. This is your responsibility.

  2. Weeds and other vegetable matter must be disposed of in the designated area. Plastic, metal, and other non-composting matter, including invasives, must be taken away with you for disposal elsewhere. Refer to the Weed Guide to help identify invasive plants.

  3. Nothing may be left on garden edges that may impede mowing.

  4. Please do not leave piles of netting in your plot; it traps birds.

  5. Do not let fencing lean into paths. Stay within your 4 marked corner posts; paths must be maintained as marked.

  6. Use organic pest controls. For help solving pest problems, ask a garden neighbor. Use of chemical/synthetic pesticides or fertilizers is prohibited.

  7. Gardeners assigned to a plot that appears to be neglected anytime after June 15 will receive an email invitation to remediate the situation. If no response is received and it becomes necessary to weed whack a plot for the health and consideration of neighbors (ticks, weed pollen, weed seed distribution), $20 will be added to the next year's registration for that party for each plot and each time weed whacking occurs. If life circumstances dictate that your plot can no longer be maintained during the season, please notify anyone on the garden committee.


QUESTIONS AND CONCERNS

  • Gardeners are encouraged to reach out with questions and concerns to committee members listed on the notice board.


Have a bountiful and satisfying season!

The Garden Committee


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Please use the attached form for garden sign ups. Indicate which sponsor organization you belong to, enclose a check for the proper number of plots and mail your complete form to: Diane Wells 219 Woo