Sunday, April 3, 2016

Connect with a Garden Near You

Growing food for yourself—and for others—is a growing movement and new community gardens sprout up every spring! Learn more, and how you can help, here.

There's something wonderful happening In parks, on church lawns, and on unused public land—people are tilling, planting, watering and harvesting healthy food for themselves and those who are hungry. 

This is the fresh face of the local food movement, but it’s largely invisible unless you know where to look. For instance, The Kitchen Garden, which has plots reserved for local families as well as the Dobbs Ferry Food Pantry, is hidden behind South Church in Dobbs Ferry. Intergenerate’s garden, which has big plots dedicated to a food pantry in Katonah, is tucked next to Chappaqua Ambulance Corp.

Even Food Bank for Westchester's Food Growing Programwhich farms five main campuses, are on places you don't normally traverse—such as Leake & Watts Residential Campus in Yonkers and Westchester County Department of Correction in Valhalla. An exception to the rule are the Demonstration Gardens at the Hart's Brook Park and Preserve in Hartsdale, which welcome the public to learn from master gardener volunteers from Cornell Cooperative Extension of Westchester. They grow fresh vegetables and berries and donate every carrot, raspberry and cherry tomato to the pantry and soup kitchen at Grace Church in White Plains.


If you’re a farmer or home gardener, the Food Bank is always happy to take your extra fresh produce. Call them at 914-923-1100 for drop-off information.

If you are looking for a community garden, here’s a growing list of resources.

Hart’s Brook Park and Preserve
156 Ridge Road, Hartsdale
Contact info to come

The Kitchen Garden & Labyrinth Garden
On property of South Presbyterian Church
353 Broadway, Dobbs Ferry, NY

Irvington Community Garden

Hastings Community Garden
Zinsser Park, Hastings NY
Contact James V. Harmon Community Center at / 914 478 2380

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Arugula Harvest!

On Saturday, Iris A., Linda H., Sam, Mark and myself worked together at weeding, mulching, watering, turning the compost and planting a few more vegetables.  There was a good amount of arugula ready to be harvested which was shared among the gardeners present.  

We will once again have a number of lettuce ready to be harvested on Wednesday for the Dobbs Ferry Food Pantry along with some of our herbs.

We are planning to meet again Wednesday June 3 from 5 to 6 pm and Saturday June 6 from 10 am to noon for group gardening.   We will once again try purchasing some new baby plants such as peppers and eggplants which were very popular last year with our gardeners.

      We had a good amount of rain today which is great for most of our vegetables.  We should see how much precipitation we get the rest of the week and gardeners can use their own judgment whether plants need any further watering.

Watering Schedule

Saturday:  Group

Monday:  Marc Taiano

Tuesday:  Linda Herring

Wednesday:  Food Pantry 

Friday:  Gabriella Munoz

Thank you for those who sent suggestions on natural methods of pest control and information on upcoming gardening classes.  I will attempt to share all of this info in the coming week.  
Please feel free to stop by anytime and enjoy the garden anyway you choose.


Marc Taiano and Solange Viggiano

We're already looking forward to next fall!

Dobbs Ferry Ecology Club comes to The Kitchen Garden

On Friday, May 29, Mark, Solange and myself met with  middle school teacher Claudia Ducic and her students from the Dobbs Ferry Ecology Club at The Kitchen Garden.  

About twelve students were present and they learned about why we feel community gardening is important and how our garden operates.  

We all then got our hands dirty as students helped by weeding and turning the soil in one of our raised beds as they proceeded to plant tomatoes and parsley in two separate areas in the garden.  

These vegetables will be mostly going to the food pantry and students were encouraged to stop by again to check on their progress.  


Monday, May 25, 2015

preparing for Dobbs Ferry Middle School visit!

Currently at the Garden-  We had a productive day at the Kitchen Garden this Saturday.  New member Adele Falco joined the group and obtained one of the two remaining individual plots.  She was very excited to join our group and began working at her plot and the community areas.  We were soon joined by Sam, Solange, Mark P., Iris and Linda M.  Together we worked on planting new vegetables, watering, weeding, turning the compost and creating a better path between the raised beds.  Gabriela who was at the garden on Wednesday noticed some strange spots on one of our mint plants and we removed those leaves.

Next Steps at the Garden-  We are planning to meet again this Wednesday May 27 from 5  to 6 pm and Saturday May 30 from 10 am to noon for group gardening.  Besides the usual tasks we may need to apply some natural pesticides to our broccoli and cabbage plants since they are beginning to be eaten by some insects.  We will also be purchasing some new baby plants such as tomatoes, eggplants and herbs which will be used on Friday when the Dobbs Ferry Middle School ecology club comes to visit. Our watering schedule for this week remains:

Saturday:  Group

Monday:  Marc Taiano

Tuesday:  Linda Herring

Wednesday:  Food Pantry 

Friday:  Gabriella Munoz

We will be meeting the DFMS ecology club this Friday at approximately 3:30 pm.  They are interested to see the type of work we do in the garden and we are planning for them to participate in the planting of new vegetables and herbs. All are welcome to stop by and meet with these 6 to 8 graders who are part of our community and have a common interest in environmental issues.

We have approximately 5 small heads of lettuce ready to be harvested by the Food Pantry folks.   If you are with the food pantry and are reading this please pick 5 or 6 of the biggest lettuces that are located in the first raised beds nearest to the garden entrance.  There are also some nice herbs including thyme, oregano, sage, lemon balm and mint that can be harvested and brought over to the Pantry.


Marc Taiano and Solange Viggiano

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Invitation to plant the labyrinth!

The Labyrinth in front of South Church is the "big sister" of The Kitchen Garden (the garden behind South), because it was planted first. It was meant to be welcoming to the public . . . and it is. As we walk by on the way to the train, to church, to yoga, to art class, to the Dobbs Ferry Food Pantry, to choir and other destinations both in South Church and beyond, many people look to see what's growing at the Labyrinth, or walk its paths. Some even walk their dogs to the center and back!

And so we invite you to the spring planting of the Labyrinth this Saturday, May 9, from 10 AM - noon.

We will be preparing the soil and planting several varieties of herbs, tomato seedlings and flowers. If we have enough strong backed folks we may add mulch and wood chips. 

People should bring any favorite hand tools they are partial to, knee pads and garden gloves. We should have enough of the larger tools by the kitchen garden. 

See you then!