Faith Community Garden
Faith Community Garden was born out of the vision of a handful of church members, who wondered if a large piece of lawn on church property could be put to use growing food for people in this community. Faith Community Garden is now in its fifth season, since being built in 2011! The project has evolved over that time with significant contributions from many volunteers, as well as the exciting, more recent addition of Maple Alley Inn gardeners.
Due to Faith Lutheran Church’s ongoing partnership with Maple Alley Inn (a community meal program of the Opportunity Council that serves weekly right here in the church social hall), Faith Community Garden now includes a garden-to-table component for the MAI meal program as well, guided by expert volunteer, Ed Wood. Ed also serves FCG as the general on-site garden consultant and has been a tremendous resource to individual gardeners and to FCG as a whole. During the 2014 season, Ed (and his volunteer crew) harvested over 2500 pounds of produce from FCG alone for the MAI meal program.
FCG currently contains 17 raised beds (4’x12’), two large ground-level beds, 4 small herb beds, a pollinator bed, a new raised squash bed, a compost area, and a tool shelter. This season, FCG is hosting 9 individual gardeners/families (occupying 11 raised beds); MAI gardens occupy the remaining 6. The ground-level beds and herb beds provide additional space for all gardeners, allow us to practice crop rotation (for soil health and prevention of disease), and enable growing larger plants (squash, etc) in areas other than individual beds (for space/growing efficiency).
FCG has been funded through grants (from Community First Gardens/WSUE and Thrivent Financial) and donations. Gardeners pay a small seasonal fee ($40/bed) to help cover water costs. Scholarships are available.
FCG continues to evolve, and new ways are constantly emerging for how the garden can serve the community.
FCG seeks to continue providing space for individual/family community members to grow food, to continue to explore our role in garden-to-table partnerships, and continue to provide volunteer opportunities to the community. We are also looking ahead to new ways FCG can function in an educational capacity—from providing a site for workshops to exploring food processing. Upcoming FCG projects include installing a hoop-house (for extended seasonal growing options), adding walls to our tool shelter (for increased weather protection), installing a water catchment system, developing additional garden beds, beginning a small fruit orchard, and adding mason bee habitat to the garden.
If you are interested in gardening or volunteering in Faith Community Garden, contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org or call the church office.
Faith Lutheran Church and Faith Community Garden seek to work in alliance with other local meal programs with the great hope that ultimately no person should go hungry. For a list of local food/meal resources in English, click here. For a list of local food/meal resources in Spanish, click here.
Whether grown in a community garden or in your home garden, if you have extra produce, click herefor a list of local food banks who gratefully accept produce donations.