Members of the Temple Terrace Community Garden are continuing to cultivate shared gardens around the city, and they’re hoping a grant from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services will help their sites blossom.
On Monday, gardeners applied for a grant of up to $5,000 for their three gardens. Plot 1 is an active communal garden located behind Riverhills Elementary Gifted Academy for Learning, plot 2 is under construction at Riverhills Park next to the tennis courts and will feature individual sections, and plot 3 is in the planning stages at Greco Middle School.
“We expect to hear back about the award on or shortly after Sept. 29,” said Community Garden President Elizabeth Leib.
Let Patch save you time. Get great local stories like this delivered right to your inbox or smartphone everyday with our free newsletter. Simple, fast sign-up here.
Leib said she’d like to use the potential grant money to repair the fence and buy seeds and planting tools for plot 1, pay for four storage sheds and lumber reimbursement for the fence and individual beds at plot 2, and help build irrigation for plot 3.
“I’m excited and optimistic about it,” Leib said of the third plot, which is a joint effort between the Community Garden and Greco Middle School.
Gardeners began working over the summer with new Greco Principal Yinka Alege and Parent Teacher Student Association Treasurer Sherrie Glow to find a spot at the school for a garden. They settled on an area behind the school near the track.
Alege said his first priority as principal is to create a family atmosphere and one in which the sixth-through-eighth graders like coming to school.
And building a garden at Greco will help make that goal a reality, Glow said.
“Getting more and more people on the campus is a positive,” she said. “Having families there is a really positive thing. It’s also an excellent opportunity for teachers and students.”
The Community Garden will have a table at Greco’s 50th anniversary celebration, which takes place Oct. 27 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event will feature music, food, games and more. Those interested in having a presence at this event can call Angel Hernandez at 813-987-6926 or email AngelM.Hernandez@sdhc.k12.fl.us.
After the celebration, Community Garden Vice President Steven McBride will lead a planning meeting to talk about how to get the garden started at the school, Leib said. Gardeners are hoping to have a garden in place by January.
Meanwhile, gardeners are working to complete the first quadrant of plot 2 before a Greater Temple Terrace Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting, which will take place Oct. 24 from 5 to 6 p.m.
On Saturday, gardeners will receive lumber for the raised bed plots and begin building them. Then, on Sept. 22, McBride will show gardeners how to bed their plots using a lasagna layering technique.
“It’s just a service we’re offering to support gardeners,” Leib said.
Plot 2 measures 89 feet wide by 204 feet long, and the first quadrant has roughly 22 individual plots, Leib said. There has been such an interest in the site that the first quadrant is nearly at capacity.
“We’re hoping that people will want to be on the waiting list for the next quadrant,” Leib said. If so, gardeners could begin making plans to build the second quadrant right away.
“I would be thrilled if we built two quadrants in two seasons,” she said.
The community is invited to visit plot 2 to see the gardeners’ progress. Those who stop by are asked to park at Scout Park.
Community Gardeners Share Expertise on Radio
Community Gardeners Finish Fence
Community Garden to Finish Fence at Second Plot
Community Garden Fence Set to Sprout Saturday
Greco’s New Principal Prepares for School Year