Hope you are all doing well as we are hunkered down at home. I’m sure many of you are anxious to get outside and gardening. Although we’ve had some freeze warnings the hope is that we will soon be ready for planting.
Over the last several weeks Rich Chambers and his son Chris has been busy helping getting us ready. A number of raised beds that were unserviceable have been replaced, the compost we ordered has been distributed into the raised beds, and the they have been tilled. The open area has been tilled and our shed has been cleaned and the lawn has been mowed. We are basically ready for business. Chris battled a rototiller whose handles are coming apart, a broken handle on a wheelbarrow and other hazards! I’m truly thankful for his help, but it doesn’t stop there. The garden elves were busy taking our seed project to the next level and transplanting them into paper cups for distribution.
I hope all of this inspires you to get out and plant your garden. With your raised beds ready to go now is a good time to get started. I have posted some Covid-19 and social distancing guidelines for Community Gardens on the picnic table. If you find yourself in the garden with other gardeners please have a mask handy to wear. The last expected frost date is May 15th, though you can plant early at your own risk. Many “cold weather” crops will not be affected, however, warmer weather crops like tomatoes, peppers, squash would need to be covered if a freeze warning is issued.
If you have not done so, now is a great time to mail a check to “Wesley Church” for your plot, the cost is $30, mark the garden in your memo, and please be sure to let me know so I can update the expense and budget sheet accordingly.
I look forward to seeing you all soon. Stay Safe.
This made its way to me via of the Coordinator of Lehigh Valley Food Policy Council. Here are a set of guidelines that community garden groups have shared as a manner of Best Practices.
In particular, I want to draw your attention to, “Gardening Guidelines”. Small tools like trowels, shears, cultivators, hoes found in your pretty basic garden tool set, I would agree, bring your own from home. Larger tools such as Shovels and Rakes that are in the shed, I can suggest either temporarily bringing your own from home, or use gloves plus sanitizing. As mentioned below, using gloves is not a substitute for sanitizing your hands before and after contact. In my view for now we have to treat everything as though it is contaminated. Certain tools such as lawn mowers, tillers, weed trimmers and the wheel-barrow are not easily displaced by home tools. In that regard I would treat those like Hoses and Spigots as in part d. below.
- Gardening Guidelines
- Gloves do not replace proper hand sanitation procedures. The outside of your glove can transmit diseases from one surface to another, including transmitting the disease to yourself and others.
- Bring sanitizing wipes and be prepared to wipe anything down that you touch that someone else might come in contact with
- Or – bring a clean cloth and a spray bottle of sanitizer. Washing reusable cloths regularly.
- Garden committee should remove all ‘community’ shared tools for the time being
- Do NOT leave personal tools in the garden.
iii. Essential shared tools such as the garden cart: Please use sanitizing wipes to thoroughly wipe down handles before AND after use. This is particularly difficult with wooden handled tools.
- Gardeners need to bring and use their own tools
- Gardeners need to take their tools home when they are done for the day
- Hoses and Spigots:
- Bring sanitizing wipes and wipe down what you touch
- Thoroughly wipe down the hose nozzle BEFORE AND AFTER USE
- Composting bins (this guideline should be addressed by specific garden committees as it pertains to each community garden):
- Please do not handle the compost bin lids. They will be removed by the committee and placed behind the bins. Please leave the lids where they are.
This document continues to evolve, and the latest version can be found at:
This information is considered “supplemental” information below: