Daily Archives: April 9, 2020

Garden Updates — 04/09/2020 — Guidelines for Safe Community Gardening

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.

  1. Gardening Guidelines
    1. Gloves:
  1.      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.
    1. Sanitizing:
  1.      Bring sanitizing wipes and be prepared to wipe anything down that you touch that someone else might come in contact with
  2.      Or – bring a clean cloth and a spray bottle of sanitizer. Washing reusable cloths regularly.
    1. Tools:
  1.      Garden committee should remove all ‘community’ shared tools for the time being
  2.      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.

  1.      Gardeners need to bring and use their own tools
  2.      Gardeners need to take their tools home when they are done for the day
    1. Hoses and Spigots:
  1.      Bring sanitizing wipes and wipe down what you touch
  2.      Thoroughly wipe down the hose nozzle BEFORE AND AFTER USE
    1. Composting bins (this guideline should be addressed by specific garden committees as it pertains to each community garden):
  1.      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:


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