I. Debriefing - Town meeting, past meetings II. Indivual visions for the garden; garden purpose III. Town's Concerns/Reservations IV. Organizational Structure of the community garden V. Design -physical garden layout and design VI. MISC.
A. Town Meeting It was noted that there was a stark contrast between the town staff and the elected officials at the meeting. There was a sense that the mayor does not want us to challenge Parks and Recs, i.e. - "permanent" is a scary word. We should be very vague with our garden design/plan - "an innocent vegetable garden". The staff (parks and recs) seem very attached to the approved MLK Master Plan. We want to ease them into the change. There were concerns about infrastructure - water, etc. The town doesn't want this to cost them anything (at least not now). They want the garden to be very easy for them. At the meeting we were not given the spot we asked for, but Dan Coleman emailed Sammy later in the week and said they we could in fact proceed with a garden in the "Open Space" bordering Hillsborough Rd. It is felt by the group that the Board of Alderpeople responded to our feelings that this was the best space - sun, soil, drainage, permanence. B. Last week's meeting at MLK Park - Jay, Peter, April, and Sammy Last Saturday at MLK Park, we talked about how to begin gardening: tools needed, Deer fence, 10 shared 3'X 15' beds separated by 2 1/2' paths for summer and 10 more for fall. We talked about the possibility of starting with these beds as a shared space garden and expanding in the future with individual plots, perennials, fruit trees, berries, culinary herbs, medicinal herbs, etc. We determined our first priorities to be - planting for a summer crop. To do this we need - to till or plow the soil, manure, organic matter - leaf mulch and compost, and a deer fence. We also need seeds, tools, and mulch.
II. Individual Visions for the garden / purpose
A. Chris- a place for folks who don't have a place to garden, an inspiration to the community, core group maintains garden while providing education and inspiration to the community, beauty as an important factor - flowers, etc. B. Michael - feels a garden manager is needed and it needs to be a paid position at least part time, wants to see edible landscaping, and beauty is a priority C. April - wants all those things -vegetables, fruits trees, berries, weeds, medicine,herbs, etc- people forming relationships with plants and people, people sharing and gaining knowledge, building community, feeding ourselves. With our limited resources we need to start small and realistically. Implement our plan in phases. Phase I - shared annual vegetable/herb/flower plots; Expand into individual plots, perennials, etc. D. Katrina - rent plots?, education, shitake logs, Phasing, start small - let it grow, E. Sammy - the beinning of a new understanding of how food is grown and where it comes from. Start small, there is so much to do! F. Deborah - empowerment, virtue of folks learning skills, connecting people with the earth G. Chris - sounds great, wants to build a living woven dome for kids to explore, bulletin board early on H. Peter - inspiration to the community, meeting-place, community building, get other folks on board I. Michal - a resource for others, no beuracracy
III. Concerns of Parks and Recs
A. Parking - don't drive: bike, walk, or ride the bus instead. Propose that the town put in a bike rack, car pool on workdays. Side streets, driveway, meadow parking B. Liability concerns - put up a sign "Don't go in House"; if the space is used, vandalism is less likely; Secure tools/tool shed; C. Nuisances - eyesore? D. Development of a garden management plan - we are working on it... Ask parks and recs for their help on all these things- they are the experts E. "Community garden was not a priority" - times are changing - eating locally and food security are growing concerns in the community - community gardens/nature education was #9 on survey of most important aspects of the park to citizens even then. It was as popular as a pool or a soccer field, but it was important to a number of people.
IV. Organizational Structure of the Community Garden
A. How will decisions be made? consensus - the point was made that the group size is in flux, making consensus difficult; should we elect a board to make decisions? Let's investigate what others have done. B. How will we integrate the Orange Co. Partnership for Young Children? Perhaps we need one person to be their contact person? This role could rotate. We need to have a meeting with them soon to determine what they think their role is in the garden. C. List of Roles/Task Assignments - These can rotate on a schedule 1. Queen Bee for workdays - someone to drive the train and make sure stuff gets done 2. Delivery Coordinator - orders and/or schedules delivery for supplies - manure, mulch, seeds, etc. 3. Calender keeper/updater - makes sure work days get posted, creates calendar of garden tasks, and announcements and events are posted to the calendar on the wiki and on the future bulletin board. 4. Mulcher/ weed manager/ grass mower inside the fence if needed 5. Bookkeeper/ Treasurer 6. Irrigator/Waterer 7. Community Outreach Coordinator - this person could table at different events, etc. 8. Educational Outreach Coordinator - this could also be in the O.C.P.Y.C. contact person 9. Soil steward - tests the soil and implements soil health 10. Resource compiler - Michael said he would send out an email to a local expert to get some ideas for local permaculture-minded resources D. Formation of Committees - this will allow us to accomplish more with less meetings. Perhaps committees will investigate various options and make suggestions, and the board will vote on what to implement in the future? 1. Fundraising 2. Childhood Education 3. Large term physical design of garden - visioning 4. Short term garden design -
V. Physical Design of the garden - we will do this at our next meeting on site at MLK Park. We will focus on short term immediate action design with the goal of growing as needed and as possible over time. Long term visioning is encouraged, but would be best addressed by committee work
A. Immediate Needs for the Garden 1. Soil ammendments - we need to source manure, check on getting compost and leaf mulch - possibly donated 2. Make sure that we have truck access near the garden site before we begin to receive deliveries. 3. Chris G. said he would perform the soil test. 4. Fencing design and supplies - Jay said he would check on Leah and Donavan's fence as a possible design guideline; we need to secure funding & buy supplies 5. Bathroom resource? Chris suggested a manufactured composting toilet by Sunfrost. B. Announcements 1. Earth Day Expo @ Smith Elementary - Chris G. is organizing this and suggested we table there. 2. April 5th, 7PM @ the Carrboro Century Center - Carrboro public meeting about our energy future - We should table this event. Here's the event announcement:
Carrboro Public Meeting The Alliance for Community Economics, along with many other local organizations including the Chamber’s Foundation for a Sustainable Community, has organized a free public meeting to be held at the Carrboro Century Center on April 5 at 7:00pm to address our energy future with a focus on local solutions to global problems. The program will open with the premier of Jim McQuaid’s half-hour film, After the Peak, followed by a panel discussion with Simon Rich, former CEO of Louis Dreyfus Natural Gas, Eric Henry, bio-fuel producer, and Patrick McDonough, board member of the Village Project. This public meeting is free. Contact Mike Lanier for more information at (919) 688-7334 or firstname.lastname@example.org.