The cold winds blew in October as the Connellsville Community Gardens focused on thanking our volunteers, putting the gardens to bed, and preparing for next year. Along with beautiful fall foliage, we enjoyed warm and sunny weather for only a week or two this year, before the cold rain blew in. We took a few of these golden days to harvest the remaining dry beans and bag those that still needed to dry out of the rain.
On October 20th, we celebrated the growing season and the harvest with a Volunteer Thank-you potluck for all of the garden and trail volunteers. This friendly feast met in the Blue Building along the bike trail, thanks to the YTRC. Two outstanding volunteers were acknowledged, Dave Stupka and the Sherwood family, with a Thank-you card and seed gifts. Dave Stupka has been a great teacher and project-leader this year by teaching the Youth Action Crew and leading projects like the creation and installation of the Bean Bike. The Sherwood family has adopted the Crawford Ave and Pittsburgh corner plot, keeping the corner flourishing with colorful flowers and herbs through the entire season. We have heard so many compliments for the beauty of this garden, which is all the work of this wonderful family!
Our other October activities included turning the garden beds and seeding Winter Rye to restore nutrients to the soil and deter weeds from returning to the beds. This week, a few volunteers from my office and Dave Stupka transplanted strawberry plants from 3rd St. to the Community center garden. Also, we plan to receive leaf mulch from the public works department to spread over the beds before the frost comes. In preparation for next year, we have been harvesting seed throughout the season and I am working to catalog this for next year’s gardeners along with the remainders of the Herman’s Garden seed box. I will be continuing this project as well as planning for next year’s gardens in November. If you would like to be involved in this planning process, learn about saving seeds, or volunteer in the garden next season – e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org !