There is an amazing momentum in HRM around local food and and community gardens. Our city boasts over 30 collectively run garden spaces which include gardens at our Universities, public schools, city parks and community organizations. The people working in these spaces are some of the loveliest I’ve known and have made my job a sincere pleasure for over five years now.
If you are new to the city, or new the garden scene there are lots of ways to lend a hand, learn some skills and get a whole new perspective on this sweet little city of ours. The best way is to simply show up and introduce yourself. If you’re willing to get your hands dirty you will very soon be loved.
Before you put on your sneakers and run out into the streets, searching for gardens to love, you can check out what is going on with a few handy resources.
For a map of all the gardens in the city plus a calender of garden workshops and celebrations, check out the Halifax Garden Network website for regular updates on what’s what. There is also a great toolbox section for those looking for some resources on all things city garden.
For those wanting to become better gardeners, there are lots of free and low-cost workshops in the city. One teaching garden is the SeeMore Green Garden on the Dalhousie Campus. They host workshops regularly during the summer months, and more spontaneously during the cooler seasons. There are also lots of other gardens who host various workshops throughout the year and all of these workshops get posted on the HGN calender, as well as sent out over the GardenHalifax listserve which anyone is welcome to join. Some exciting events coming up soon are:
- Compost workparty, Friday Sept. 30th at 2:30 p.m. at the Bloomfield Community Garden.
- Tea party, Sunday Oct. 2nd at 1 p.m. at the SeeMore Green Garden.
- Bloomfield Community Greenhouse Grand Opening, Saturday Oct. 15th 2-5 p.m. at the Bloomfield Centre
Here at the Urban Garden Project we always are looking for extra hands and volunteering is a great way to help. We need folks with all sorts of skills and various time commitments. Some things we are looking for people to help with are:
- Tending to school gardens and bringing children out to the gardens.
- Collecting organic materials from local cafes/restaurants for our soils.
- Helping shovel, build, pile things in community gardens.
- Making posters, writing blog posts, taking photos/video of our events.
- Helping with childcare/children’s activities at workshops.
- Facilitating a workshop on your favorite garden skill.
To lend a hand contact Garity at the Urban Garden Project, we’ll ask you what gets you excited, and get you set-up with a project.
Each garden is different and has its own gems. Hop on your bike, or on the bus and adventure to one far from your house or in a neighborhood you haven’t ventured to before. Pick a beautiful day, pack a lunch and see if the city feels different afterwards.
Written by: Garity Chapman, Urban Garden Project