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By David Dancy

It’s early July and Utica’s first and best urban, raised bed garden is thriving. For The Good’s Community Garden’s located on Linwood Pl. and Jay St are in need of people to help consume and maintain the bountiful harvests pouring out of the garden at Linwood Pl..

Any volunteers that help maintain the beds,mow the lawn or simply pick up litter, can earn a pound of free produce for sixteen minutes of help in the garden. This is truly a community effort and the proof of it’s success is in the produce and will soon be in someone’s refrigerator and/or stomach.

The well-manicured environment is safe for kids, friends and family. Actually it’s an ideal place to relax in our busy little city. An ‘oasis’ in the midst of a food desert. The raised beds have been growing collared-greens, garlic (scapes), onions and chives. There are three beds of maturing tomato plants, beans , lots of squash, okra, soy beans, burdock, long green beans, cabbage, bush beans, cucumbers, squash, lettuce, spinach, radishes, dill, carrots, Swiss chard, kale, mustard, potatoes, beets, turnips and watermelon for future volunteers. We also have strawberries, black berries, pumpkinmulberries, currants, raspberries, asparagus, sage, parsley, chamomile, various mints, cilantro, and thyme
ready for consumption.

Lead Gardener, David Dancy and Colgate Intern, Kaitlin Abrams, will help facilitate and delegate responsibilities for any interested parties or individuals. And here is a shout out to all of the able bodied volunteers who have helped make the garden a success thus far. Do not fear, all the back breaking work
has been done, “We are not looking to work anyone to death” Dancy assured. He continued “we have a lot of small, simple things that need to be done and we do not need experts, but yeah , if you have expertise, all the better.” Dancy emphasized FTG’s mission regarding urban raised beds. “The main goal is to familiarize people within the community with producing their own food in their own back yards preferably through the raised bed, to prevent lead contamination from the many contaminated backyards through out Cornhill and greater Utica.” He said.So far so good, sweat equity pays the bills, but both locations: Jay St and Linwood Pl can useyour help. If you have any questions about where and when you can volunteer please call David Dancy @ 315-723-5020 or For The Good Inc. @ 315-797-2417

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