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Growing Together: A Recap of Vedgewater Community Garden's 2023 Successful Year

Updated: Dec 18, 2023

As we are now bundled up and hopefully resting from gardening work for the winter, we are sharing a recap and highlights for Vedgewater from the 8 months of gardening in 2023.


For all the volunteers, gardeners, and organizers - thank you for everything you did to help the garden grow, thrive, and give joy and sustenance to the community.




Households and Plots:

  • 182 households gardening / plots rented out

  • 17 of those plots provided for free or at sliding scale for charitable purposes


Group Gardening Involvement:

  • Edgewater Environmental Coalition

  • Broadway Armory Migrants

  • One Northside

  • Edgewater Mutual Aid Network

  • Misericordia


Garden Maintenance and Improvements:

  • Reduced rental cost by 25% from 2022

  • Repaired many beds

  • Put the garden “to bed” to maintain a tidy appearance in off-season

  • Added composting onsite and pickup services

  • Added two wheelchair-accessible beds

  • Added new signage, informational and educational


Donations and Contributions:

  • About 240 lbs of food donated to the Edgewater Mutual Aid Network weekly community food distribution from July through October

  • 1 car load of harvest donated to Care for Real (local food pantry) in the final garden clean up in November


Community Engagement:

  • 135 emails on volunteer mailing list

  • 8 monthly volunteer work days

  • 440 logged volunteer hours

  • Welcomed people staying at Broadway Armory to garden

  • Hosted Senn “Freshman Connection” Field Trip

  • Hosted Loyola freshman for “Saturday of Service”

  • Donated seed collected to Edgewater Library’s Little Free Seed Library 


Events

  • How Does Your Garden Grow Workshop: Put Your Bed to Bed with Chicago Community Gardner's Association

  • Seed Workshop & Community Share Event

  • Garden Herb Walk

  • Wild Edible Picnic and Plant Walk

  • Plant and Seedling Swap

  • Gleaning and Harvest Party

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