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East County Wednesday, Apr. 25, 2018 3 years ago

Community garden might expand in Greenbrook

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CDD 4 board members must decide whether to fund the project.
by: Amelia Hanks Community Reporter

Those who utilize the community garden at the Greenbrook Adventure Park soon will find out whether the CDD 4 board members have green thumbs.

Green, as in go ahead.

At the CDD 4 board meeting April 18 at Lakewood Ranch Town Hall, Greenbrook's Joseph Sidski proposed improvements to the community garden, among those the doubling in size of the 70-foot by 70-foot space at a cost of about $5,000.

Other improvements proposed by Sidski, and supported by the Lakewood Ranch Garden Club, involved a new shed ($23,000), a compost pile ($3,000), and an arbor ($2,000).

The community garden has attracted steady growth in terms of those leasing a plot over its two years of existence. The Lakewood Ranch Garden Club oversees the community garden and has a waiting list of four people who want plots.

“I think it’s a good idea to expand,” said Judy Sherpa, a member of the Lakewood Ranch Garden Club. "It provides a sense of community if there are places to sit and talk.”

Lori Walker, the president of the Lakewood Ranch Garden Club, said the demand for community garden space is high because of HOA restrictions in many communities that prohibit or seriously curtail the growing of vegetables.

"We are a community, and it’s part of our rules to help one another as a part of the community,” Walker said of expanding the community garden.

Besides hosting individual plots, the community garden also has a section, tended to by the Lakewood Ranch Garden Club, that grows vegetables and donates them to the Stillpoint House of Prayer food bank.

Some of the tasks, such as weeding, take extra community effort, but residents such as Greenbrook's Doug Lehrian said even those times could turn into a social occasion, especially if an area was added for people to sit when they aren't working in the garden.

“There’s not much ability to interact with the other gardeners, without facilities to make it happen,” Lehrian said. “I would like a picnic table for us to be able to meet and a shed to store my equipment.”

CDD board members were expected to decide the issue at the April 25 budget meeting.

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