Monday, February 4, 2013

Communal gardeners of Moreland rise up! Your time is here! (well almost) - Saturday 16th Feb 10.30am

Bountiful fresh food harvested a week ago!
More where this came from

OK, bear with me, this one’s a little lengthy but it's important.

When lots of you signed up, you checked the box marked "Member & Communal Gardener - I'd like to join others growing and harvesting food in the communal plots".

Now is the time for us to form an awesome, well oiled, communal gardening crew and really get this garden humming. Below is some background to the communal beds and why we have them as well as the next steps.

First, 5 reasons why we have communal garden beds?
Kindergarden - Born with black thumbs? Parents not gardeners? Never had a chance to grow food before? There's lots to learn and our communal beds provide a easy way for you to gain heaps of skills and knowledge, perhaps preparing you to move on to a personal plot later on.
Commitment - If you aren't sure about this gardening lark yet or know that your hectic party/work/family/sport/other lifestyle won't allow you the time, we have a solution! Throwing your effort into the communal beds means you can still get your hands dirty, take home some food and learn stuff and you'll find out if this casual gardening arrangement is enough to satisfy you. If you realise you want something more then you can pop the question: How about a personal plot? 
Community – we reckon there’s no better way to meet people, chat and develop friendships than digging towards a common goal – food. 
Gardeners unlimited - Our mix of personal and communal beds solves a problem experienced by many community gardens - waiting lists. There is no limit to how many people can grow food in our garden. One day we may have a personal plot waiting list (plots are still available if you're interested) but for anyone on the list we still offer an opportunity to get stuck in. (It's also cheaper than a personal plot). 
Productivity – I'll tell you a little secret. Our communal plots are going to be super-productive. The large space, crop rotation, complimentary planting, a wide variety of food AND a big, attentive communal gardening crew will increase our productivity, fill your basket at the end of the day and provide an opportunity to try some food you've never tried before.
How it will work
It won't be gardening anarchy. We'll have a rotation planting system to maximise the amount of food we grow. We've got two big communal beds and right now we're growing food in one and improving the soil in the other.

This gives us some time to build our crew and work out how to:
  • get the work done when it needs to be done
  • share the work and the food
  • grow the most food we can in the space
  • have fun and get to know each other while we do all the above

What next?
Anyone interested in being part of the communal bed crew is invited to a meeting on Saturday 16th Feb at 10.30am at the West Brunswick Community Garden.

The communal crew (yep, that’s you!) will plan, organise and communicate the planting and the work that needs doing; organising supplies, watering, weeding, soil prep etc. Obviously the more people prepared to share these tasks, the lighter the load for all concerned.

With this in mind, our next task is to get together to make sure we're all pointing in the same direction and find a few volunteer Captains to lead and organise the crew. We reckon these people will need the following skills (amongst others): planning rotation veggie growing, computer/web/tech savviness (to handle communicating with the group and sharing activities on-line), organising and planning skills. Don't be concerned about stepping up, you'll have all the support you need.

We need as many of you as possible to come along and we need some people to put their hand up to help. There's no-one else but us to make this happen and there's nothing we can't work out between us. Look how far we've come already!

Prior to the meeting please have a read of the membership info and our guidelines to get a clear idea of what you are signing up to.

If you haven't paid your membership for this year, you can pay on the day. We are not requesting donations from communal gardeners until the start of the garden year (July to June).

Look forward to sharing the bounty …