Applications being accepted for community garden

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By Rose Chavez | Food System/Food Equity Coalition

The Vista Lake Community Garden at 230 Port Ave. by the gazebo in Vista will soon sprout a bounty of food for local families. 

The new community garden is taking applications for memberships available for 2022. Anyone can be a member of the garden, but preference is given to people who live in the neighborhood for the individual plots. 

Successful applicants will be provided seeds/vegetable starts, tools, soil, water and gardening instruction. Gardeners will get to keep their harvest if it is an individual plot or if they are tending the community beds that will provide food to be distributed to the neighborhood and food pantry network according to the Community Learning and Leadership Circle (CLLC) members that oversee the leadership of the garden. 

Applications for memberships to the community garden, which include guidance and supplies as well as a produce share, are available for $15/year. Individual plots are an additional $15/year. Scholarships are available for those with a demonstrated need. Please contact Jen Pitcher at jenp@plpoa.com to request/pay for a bed and/or membership to the community garden. 

All gardeners are required to complete one to two hours of volunteer work a month that benefits the garden as a whole. These hours can include weeding or watering common areas, composting, improving infrastructure, cleaning tools and helping with events. 

Plots are assigned first-come, first-served to Pagosa Lakes Property Owners Association (PLPOA) residents. Those who do not receive a plot will be placed on a waiting list and contacted if a plot becomes available during the season. Community members who do not live in PLPOA may still be members of the community garden, but will be restricted to growing in community plots and will enjoy all other member benefits. 

Another opportunity to join in on the garden activities will be this upcoming Sunday, June 12, from 4 to 6 p.m. Come help us plant the community garden with fruits, vegetables and flowers that will be grown and shared with the Vista neighborhood and surrounding community through engaging programming opportunities this growing season. 

We will have a guest speaker who will share the benefits of regenerative and sustainable agriculture.

For more information about the events and activities of the Vista Lake Community Garden, please contact the FSFE — Food Coalition at fsfearchuleta@gmail.com or (401) 371-3227.