TICONDEROGA - The start-up session for the Community Garden at the First United Methodist Church in Ticonderoga took place recently.
The keynote speaker was Emily Selleck, horticultural specialist with the Cornell Cooperative Extension Service in Westport. A master gardener, Selleck gave a power point presentation on basic gardening techniques.
Attendees were given handouts and ideas for a group discussion after the program led by Betty Rettig and Sandy Sprague, Carillon Garden Club members.
Guidelines and an agreement form were distributed for participation in the Community Garden located behind the church. Gardeners of various skill levels will be digging in the dirt soon on plots that are 10 X 10 or 10 X 20 feet. Some participants will share a plot and some of the youngest will learn as they garden with a parent or grandparent.
Gardeners are expected to practice organic gardening methods rather than using synthetic chemicals for enriching soil or controlling pests as the garden is in the Lake Champlain watershed area.
"The garden soil is ready for growing with excellent sun exposure and drainage," Rettig said. "Water spigots are conveniently placed nearby and there is a tall fence surrounding the garden. Even a tool shed will be in place soon, a generous donation from Lowe's of Ticonderoga. Other donations from the community would be appreciated, such as a wheelbarrow, straw for mulching, and miscellaneous gardening tools."
A few plots are still available to Ticonderoga residents. Interested people can call Sprague at 585-3515 or Rettig at 585-7247. The fee for a 10 X 20 plot is $25 and for a 10 X 10 $12.50. The money will be used for garden maintenance and improvements.
"Truly a dream come true, a field of grasses and wildflowers is now becoming a productive place for those wishing to grow fresh vegetables for their families, thanks to the efforts of Eagle Scout Kevin Densmore and crew," Rettig said.
The Community Garden is now an Outreach Ministry of the First United Methodist Church.