Who are we?
Most of our gardeners are either new or fairly new to gardening but we do have a number of those who have been growing vegetables and flowers for years. In addition we are very fortunate to have several Master Gardeners. Our members are from both the community and Chestnut Ridge Christian Church. Those in need of a gardening space are invited to join us as we have plots available. You do not have to be a member of the church to participate.
What was the purpose of starting a community garden?
In the Spring of 2009, members of Chestnut Ridge Christian Church decided to set aside space on an unused portion of the church’s property for a “Square-Foot Garden” to grow fresh, organic vegetables for local food pantries and people in need. It was hoped this produce would assist those who were going through the challenging times of a weak economy and provide some healthy alternative foods.
The vision was to partner with other organizations, in the hope to expand interest in gardening and spread the healthy value of locally grown produce as a key part of a healthy diet.
How did you get started?
Debbie Abernathy, a member of Chestnut Ridge Christian Church, had the vision of involving the church and community in an ongoing, outreach project. She identified the focus; feeding those in need. She pulled together a steering committee that envisioned a “Feed the Hungry” Garden and eventually adding additional beds for the community, who would be asked to contribute 10% of the produce they grew. It was begun with the construction of 3 boxes. The soil was prepared, added and vegetables were planted.
How long has the garden existed?
The “Feed the Hungry” garden was started in the spring of 2009 with 3 plots. The garden now has 64 plots with an additional 5 communal beds. While maintaining the church’s plots for local pantries, additional plots were made available to individuals from the local community at a nominal fee. They were then responsible for planting, maintaining, and harvesting produce for their own personal use and donations to feed the hungry. It is hoped that this will help meet a growing need for gardening space in the suburbs of Metro Atlanta for safe, fresh, home-grown produce and also build a sense of community among those who participate.
Where are you located?
We are located behind Chestnut Ridge Christian Church at 2663 Johnson Ferry Road, Marietta Georgia, 30062 (Corner of Johnson Ferry Road and Post Oak Tritt Road)
How big is the garden?
The total gardening area is one fifth of an acre.
Who receives the food?
The food has been donated to the Center for Family Resources, Marietta First Christian Church Food Pantry, Extension for Women, Transfiguration Church, and MUST Ministries.
Is it only for church members?
No, local community people are invited to participate.
As a member, what are one’s obligations?
Everyone is asked to maintain their garden plots, keep them weeded as well as weed the immediate
area around their garden box. Mulch to cut down on the weeds has been available. In addition it is asked that you monitor your plants for insects and disease. There is support from other gardeners and Master Gardeners to help with insect problems. In addition, pests and disease workshops are offered.
You are asked to donate 10% of your produce to be donated to food ministries. It is an on your honor agreement. Add: link to guidelines
Is there a cost and what does that include?
- 4×4 plots – $20.00 for the year (summer and winter growing seasons)
- 3×10 plots – $40.00 for the year (summer and winter growing seasons)
For the year you receive a raised bed complete with soil, access to standing hose bibs with hoses and watering wands, free classes and workshops, gardening support from Master Gardeners, sprinkled with hard work and fun.
What kind of support is there for gardeners?
Classes and workshops are provided at the garden/church site as well as information regarding workshops at other locations. The garden has partnered with a number of local organizations such as Cobb County’s Wright Nature Center (located adjacent to the church property), Master Gardeners, and Cobb County Extension for training, assistance, and demonstrations on various gardening methods and topics.
How do you know if there are plots available?
New gardeners can contact Marilyn Richter at email@example.com to learn the availability of garden plots or be put on a waiting list.
How do you apply for a garden plot?
Application requests are taken each year in February. Garden plots are assigned according to availability, depending on the number of gardeners who do not return.
Applicants are required to read and sign the guidelines, complete the application form, attach a check, and get this to Marilyn Richter by the stated deadline. If you have any questions, contact Marilyn Richter at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is the responsibility of returning gardeners?
Returning gardeners are also required to read and sign the guidelines, complete the application form, and attach a check by the stated deadline. Returning gardeners will be allowed to keep their previously assigned plot(s).