Gardening Articles and Videos
2015 Garden Help Needed Year round
1/30/2014 | Sheryl McGlochlin
Help in as many of the following as you like.
- Giving tours as needed and talking with potential members
- Helping in a booth at a Community fair or festival
- Making refreshments for workers
- Oversee preparations/serving food for meals/harvest at a group work session
- Organizing and Arranging tools and supplies in the greenhouse
- Helping us find and collect needed tools and equipment
- Resource Collector
- Computer work
- Crowd Funding work
- Social media work
- Public Relations
- Prize Collector
- Laying Black Plastic
- Clean up
- Posting photos online
- Garden Supervisor
- Garden Assistant Supervisor
- Greeter/Roll attendance
- Handy Man/Woman skills
- Bartering Services
Recruiting - Help us get the word out about our community garden group! Any way you can think of, we will appreciate your help! Whether it’s by word of mouth, posting flyers, helping us with garden tours & open houses, etc. Share info in your place of business, on Facebook, Meetup, and any other social media site, etc.
Bottom line: We always need help with recruiting since we have no shortage of land and are able to grow as much food as we have people to help. In late winter and early spring gardening is very popular. Once summer and fall arrive, fewer people come but our gardens continue to be as demanding as they were in the spring. Harvest during this time is the BEST but people are drawn to many other activities so we continue to recruit through these months. NOTE: If members come and help, they get food. If they don’t come and help, they don’t receive food. If a member wants to put in several hours in the spring and then expect to stop by during the rest of the year and pick up food, they may be disappointed, since many people would like to do that. Since we have no employees, we depend solely on garden members to help with the work year round. A member may work for 1 hour a week and receive food. It’s not a burdensome task to help. Those who work receive all of the food. Anyone interested may join our group ANY month of the year. Membership is $100/annual fee/household (based on a family of 5) and begins when they register. Membership continues for 12 consecutive months.
Planting - From January through October, we are generally planting something, somewhere in our gardens.
Assisting w/ Weekly Orientations for New People - We see potential garden members nearly every week. This job involves helping new people get better acquainted with our program and handing them info on where to learn more. This will take place during our regular group work sessions. This person will need to be informed in order to answer basic questions about our group and how it works. An abundance of information is located online at my website: liveandthrive.com
Helping in a booth at a fair or festival - There are some fairs or festivals we participate in during the year that require additional help. We need to create a booth and talk with people about our group. This is one of the many ways we promote and showcase our group and recruit people. More info will be given soon. It can be hectic at times so those working in this job need to be professional and have some experience with this type of work, if possible.
Cook, Chef - Most group garden work sessions include some kind of edible treat for our members i.e. bagels, a hot bowl of homemade soup, banana or zucchini bread, fruit smoothies, etc. I do this to show appreciation for the efforts and hard work of our members. Garden produce is used as much as possible in our dishes. It’s also a chance for us to teach members a variety of ways to use the produce we grow. Sometimes produce we use is fresh from the garden and other times it has been preserved through freezing or canning. Recipes are included online OR feel free to use a family favorite. The job requires you to make and bring a food item the following Saturday to share with the group.
Oversee preparation for meals/food at group work session - This person is responsible for setting up a food area at our group garden work sessions and oversee the serving and cleaning up afterward. I’ll provide serving spoons, utensils, plates, bowls, tablecloth, etc. This job does not require you to cook the food in advance. Someone else will be doing that.
Digging & Shoveling - Whenever planting is involved, there is always some type of digging or shoveling going on. This may be with a full length shovel or small hand shovel. Generally requires arm and back strength. If you have any tools, bring them. I have some tools for members to use as well. I will try to inform you in advance what type of work we’ll be doing.
Weeding - An ongoing job in the garden is weeding, however, when we use the black plastic mulch, weeding is minimal. If you have an old steak knife that you can bring with you each time, this is a great weeding tool. It makes weeding fast and easy. Weeding can be done nearly anytime - not just during group garden work sessions. However, before you work in any of our gardens 1) I need to be confident that you know the difference between a weed and a plant - which can be tricky sometimes 2) members must notify me in advance before working on their own in any garden.
NOTE: It is helpful but not necessary to contact me in advance if you plan to attend the group work sessions.
Hoeing - When planting furrows, a hoe is used. We create many furrows in our gardens so plenty of opportunities will be available to help us hoe. You will be instructed on how to do this, if you don’t know already. If you have a hoe or any garden tools, let me know. Always put your name on them before bringing them to the gardens.
Organizing & Arranging - There is a need for ongoing straightening and tidying up, in the greenhouse, in the back of our truck used for mini farmers markets, etc. If you like to organize and keep everything straightened and clutter free, you will find plenty of opportunities to do this throughout the year.
Staking - Before we begin planting, stakes are required to help us create furrows that are straight. This is light weight but requires bending over or kneeling down.
Garden Quiz Assistant - One of our goals is to teach members how to grow food, we encourage members to read our garden text book. In every weekly garden newsletter, there will be a short quiz. I would love to take a few minutes on our group work sessions and offer a prize to the person who can answer the questions from the past week’s quiz. You may be asked to help put together a short quiz from our garden text book or info about our garden organization.
Resource collector - Local businesses have been very generous in the past in giving us a variety of garden product and supplies i.e. seeds, plants, tools, etc. In addition, we look for garden product at yard sales, thrift stores, etc. We are always in need of members who will talk to local businesses and ask for donations. We may also barter some of our harvest to get supplies and tools that we need.
Prize collector - Any type of garden product, big or little, that we can give away to members for prizes.
Laying black plastic - Each spring we lay a lot of black plastic. This creates a water-wise garden AND weed-free garden! This chore is done on a day with no wind. The work goes fast with several people helping. It saves us hundreds of hours throughout the season where ever this is laid.
Cleaning up - By the time the work is done, garden members are tired. Cleaning up is a job all on it’s own. Getting tools back to where they belong and making sure the property is all cleaned up before we leave, is a very important job.
Raking - If you have tools for raking, let me know. We also provide tools. Raking may require a landscape rake or leaf rake, depending on the job we are doing.
Hauling (rocks, produce, etc.) - We use rocks, bricks, or small logs to hold down the black plastic mulch. Hauling produce out of the garden back to the vehicles is another ongoing job. Hauling anything to and from the garden generally requires strength to lift and sometimes a strong back and legs.
Tour Guide - This job requires showing new people around the garden property that we are working in and explain basic garden info to them. A tour guide must be welcoming and friendly.
Posting photos online - Computer skills are required. I am looking for members in our group who have experience working on a Mac Book in iphoto. I have hundreds of garden photos that need to be uploaded on 3 websites. You would be doing this work in my office on my Mac Book.
Photographer - Bring your camera - take photos, post them on a few websites that we use. One photo really is worth a thousand words! This helps us show off our gardens and gets the word out. I love photos you send to me as well.
Garden Supervisor - I am always looking for qualified people to help with supervising our garden work. There are times I need to be out of town or may be sick. I may have other commitments and can not attend, but the work always goes on whether I am there or not. I will always have a qualified supervisor on hand. Once the snow is gone, our group work sessions include week days as well as Saturdays.
Greeter - Since we have new people attending nearly every week, one person needs to be appointed a greeter. The greeter finds out if the new person is there to work or just wants a tour. The greeter will welcome not only any new people but regular members as well. They also need to record names of those in attendance and gather contact info.
Handyman Skills - Anything that needs to be fixed, repaired, etc. A handyman (or handy woman) can do just about anything that no one else can do!! A handyman is invaluable in our group!! Please let me know who you are!
Tilling - If you have a tiller or know how to use one, let me know. We need you! If you don’t know what a tiller is, come in the spring and learn more about tilling. Tilling must be done before planting.
Barter Services Assistant - We have a barter system within our garden and outdoor adventure groups. A barter assistant will help me gather info from our members. We ask you to fill out two questions: 1) What is on your wish list? (These may include products or services you need, things you are looking for or need, etc.) 2) What do you have to offer? (These may include products, services, talents, skills, knowledge, experience, etc.) You’ll receive info on this that give you examples, so you can assist others in filling out their forms. A person’s needs and wants are constantly changing, which is common.