Community garden - The Community Garden on Victoria Avenue in Indian Head is a flourishing place for residents to develop their “green thumb.”

The row of gardens on the east end of Victoria Avenue in Indian Head are an asset to the community, providing a place for residents of all ages to grow their favourite produce and develop an appreciation for nature.
In the late summer and fall of 2018, members of Communities in Bloom and other interested residents initiated the Community Garden project, in cooperation with the Town of Indian Head.
“The garden was established to provide an opportunity for residents who do not have a suitable space to grow their own food,” explained Dave Gehl, a founding member of the Community Garden Committee. “In the first year, 2019, there were 20 plots but this was increased to 32 because of the perceived need.”
The plots are 10 x 20 ft. and gardeners pay an annual fee of $30 to cover tilling and other operating costs.
“Gardeners also have access to workshops, an heirloom seed library, common use tools, hoses, watering cans and water from a tap in each plot,” Gehl said.
Children are among those who benefit from the Community Garden. The Indian Head Horticultural Society, which was established in 1926, has offered a School Garden Program for many years. When the Community Garden was established, the Horticultural Society recognized an opportunity to expand the program.
“We thought it would be a good idea to use one or a few of those plots for students who don’t have a garden at home or would like more guidance,” said Christiane Catellier who facilitates the School Garden Program with Laurel Hollick.
There are now two ways children can participate – by planting a garden at home or by working with others at the Community Garden. The children select from sixteen varieties of produce and six types of flowers. They are given seeds and an information packet to help them grow their garden.
There were 33 children involved in the program this summer and eight of them maintained a plot at the Community Garden. Together these children sowed seeds for sunflowers, pumpkins, green and yellow beans, zinnias, yellow zucchini, cosmos, carrots, peas, and patty pan squash. Gehl also gave the children three tomato seedlings to grow in their Community Garden plot.
“The kids loved seeding the garden, watering it, and have really been enjoying harvesting,” Catellier said. “We found our pumpkins did not have enough room and so we had to pull the beans out early, after only one picking. Since then we have also pulled out the peas to make room for the squash and have been harvesting zucchini, tomatoes, patty pan squash, and some lovely bouquets of cut flowers.”
Residents interested in accessing the Community Garden are encouraged to speak with a committee member or attend the annual meeting, typically held in late winter. Information about the School Garden Program is provided to students each spring.

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