to American River Community Church’s Ken Brizzi Gardens. There are three parts to this multifunctional one-acre garden.
1. Feed the Hungry Garden The largest garden area is devoted to growing food for Feeding the Hungry of the Sacramento area. “Loaves and Fishes” receives the majority of this food, which has been averaging 1,000 pounds each summer. The "Carmichael Food Closet" also receives food when the garden is at maximum production in the summer. In 2011, we' added the "Union Gospel Mission" to our list of recipients.
2. The Wonderland School entrance is a colorful hand painted sign reading “Veggie Trails”. School children grow tomatoes, pumpkins, strawberries, & cucumbers, watermelons, and much more. Family participation is encouraged.
3. Community Garden Plots The second largest area is devoted to local families wanting to garden organically. Each garden plot is 10’ by 12’ and rents for $30.00/.year. Of course, this means production most of the year with summer crops followed by winter crops. The fee covers water costs. Each gardener signs a "good neighbor" agreement annually. Vegetable seed is free as is advice, use of tools, safety training, camaraderie, food and recipe trading, and educational classes. We encourage a weed-free environment and minimal, if any, pesticide use. Gift Certificates are awarded to superior gardens in periodic contests.
Future Plans The garden area is also used for the annual church picnic. In the future, we hope to hold an event to be called “Art Under the Oak” where anyone wishing to display their artwork may have a public showing as approved by our Art committee. Many gardeners are excellent cooks and have special recipes they can share. In 2012, we’ll start a recipe book featuring the best from our community gardeners. Other events planned include an herb seminar, multi-grafting fruit trees, summer pruning demonstrations, growing giant pumpkins, multi grafting tomatoes and more. We have plans to be in the Carmichael Times Newspaper in spring of 2012 thanks to Susan Maxwell Skinner's reporting.
Memorial and Dedication Rose Garden With the idea of continued giving, the memorial rose garden will bring pleasure to and will connect with many care home residents for years to come, there is a rose memorial and dedication garden, with the idea of growing and giving away long-stemmed fragrant roses all spring, summer and fall to the residents of local care homes. Contact Barbara Morgan for more information at 483-3465.
Happy, Healthy Growing!