The links to churches and faith based organizations that are planting gardens and discovering a closer relationship to God through gardening just keep pouring in. Here is a great story about Treasures Valley Vineyard Fellowship in Boise Idaho
If you look at the biblical story, food is just a thread that you can kind of pull throughout the whole thing whether it’s the manna in the wilderness or Jesus gathering the disciples around the table or our central metaphor in our sanctuary is a communion table. It is a table with food on it for gathering around.
And in Lexington Kentucky our good friends Geoff and Sherry Maddock are involved in Seedleaf a small organization started by their friend Ryan Koch to both run a community garden and help others start community gardens. If you are in the Lexington area Ryan would be a great resource for starting a new community garden. Ryan gives the following great advice for those starting a garden
If you are interested in having a garden installed in a space of your choice, here are a couple of questions to get the process started:
- Do you have a group of volunteers who can help with the maintenance (watering, weeding, etc.) of the garden?
- What do you plan to do with the produce?
- Does the space have access to water?
- What can be done to discourage theft and vandalism at this site?
Once you have answered these questions you can begin with the following steps:
- Contact Seedleaf for a free consultation (by email from this site).
- Have a soil sample done (The Fayette Co. Extention Office can do this for $5).
- Consider our financial estimate of the installation and the maintenance of the garden. (Know that a group of volunteers can greatly reduce the cost of a garden–labor is Seedleaf’s biggest expense.)
- Set a start date and keep your volunteers in the loop. Seedleaf can begin plowing as early as March (weather permitting), and is willing to begin a garden as late as July (planting by August 1 for a fall garden).
Geoff and Sherry are part of the Communality community in Lexington – a community church and also a ministry that works with the homeless and marginalized in Lexington.
And thanks to my friend Pat Sween who passed on the newsletter from her friends Doug and Joy Moore who have been involved in an exciting project in San Antonio. They have created a community garden in their backyard and has also been asked to create a garden as an art project.
All kinds of vegetables are in the ground now and beginning to sprout and grow in our backyard. Three young girls from different families in the neighborhood have spaces in one section of our backyard garden. It was fun to have their families over for a seed planting time in mid-March. One girl planted her carrot seeds, studied the soil intently for two minutes and then asked, “Why aren’t these seeds coming up?” We all had a big laugh as Mom and Dad explained it takes several days for the seeds to germinate and grow.
One of my art friends, Rex, has some warehouses he is developing into a new and exciting art venue here in San Antonio. He has over thirty artists renting space in his warehouse complex, and has asked me to be one of them. The art form he wants me to exhibit? A vegetable garden-scape, of course! My ‘canvas’ will be a garden box that I built and then will cultivate in the interior courtyard of the warehouses. This mini-garden box will be the third one I have built to raise fresh produce. This one is particularly exciting, as it has the potential to introduce me to a network of artists and become the site of a Bible reading group for them.
So to all those who are contemplating starting a garden this year, or are beginning to plan for next year take heart – you really are part of a movement that God is using to change our world.