Beverly residents will have the opportunity to share in the work and bounty of two community gardens this season, thanks to funding provided by the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation and the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources.
The Beverly ON TRAC community garden has been established with assistance from a Healthy Community Grant made possible through the West Virginia Development Office and the Benedum Foundation.
The gardens will feature raised beds, built by the community garden group, which will be located behind the Collett House and Goff House in Beverly.
The Inter-Mountain photo by Beth Christian Broschart
Beverly resident Joan Hicks helps plan the Beverly ON TRAC community gardens at a recent informational meeting. Community members will work to build raised beds; plant and tend the gardens; and share the harvest.
"Interested parties gathered Thursday at the Beverly Heritage Center to make some initial plans for the gardens," said Beverly Heritage Center Executive Director Darryl DeGripp. "The group is working out the particulars regarding the planting and care of the garden and how crops will be divided."
The $3,000 grant will help with supplies to build the gardens, buy equipment and purchase plants. The total estimated cost for the entire project, including donated items and labor, is $8,000.
"The great thing about the garden is that it will be able to be self-sufficient," DeGripp said. "We can harvest seeds from this year to plant next year in the gardens."
The gardens will total 500 square feet, with raised beds built by the members. The idea is to keep the gardens in the style of the traditional 19th century and use heirloom and historic plants.
"During the process, we will also sponsor workshops on planting, caring for the garden and some cooking techniques," DeGripp said. "We also have Hannah Fincham from the West Virginia University Extension Service, who will be talking about safe food preservation."
DeGripp said he wrote the grant as a way to help neighbors become more involved.
"I thought it would be a great way to get the community together and working," DeGripp said. "Work scheduling will be on a monthly basis, and each member will be required to participate in the upkeep of the gardens. By working together, each member will reap the rewards of a successful harvest."
Additional information about the community garden is available by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.