Community Garden Plots

Aviary entrance with garden plots at the backI grew up with six siblings in rural Ontario and we all put in serious time tending two huge vegetable gardens. I wasn’t always smiling then but memories of eating yellow beans, warm from the sun (when I should have been working), are partly what got me renting a garden plot this year.

My parents are both gone now but I can imagine them chuckling together over my $80 rental of dirt. City dirt. But it’s turning out to be good dirt and I’ve already got a bumper crop of radishes that would have cost me $10. By the end of the season when my pumpkins are ready, I’m certain I’ll have harvested more than $80 worth of food.

My 4m by 5m plot is at the Churchill Park Aviary, a volunteer-run home for dozens of exotic birds, in Hamilton’s west end. Sadly, I don’t get there often enough to keep the weeds down. I try not to drool over the perfectly kept plots and take some solace in others’ weedy plots. And yes, that’s a bit sick.

The Aviary is a beautiful spot with a wide variety of birds and a lovely herb garden in progress. All manner of people garden here and it’s been quite enjoyable to chat and compare crops. Which means Hamilton’s community gardens are good for at least two things – safely grown food and cultivating community spirit.

2 thoughts on “Community Garden Plots

  1. Hello Helen,
    Happy to see your new blog. As a Flamborough resident I am a reluctant Hamiltonian. When we moved to our home 13 years ago we had no idea we would someday be part of the City of Hamilton. However it is growing on me. I look forward to learning more about Hamilton and I invite you to come visit my corner of the city – the extreme northeast part that borders Halton and Wellington regions. I’ll be your tour guide. I hope you post more news of your harvest as the season progresses.
    Sonja @sonjaferne


    • Great idea Sonja, let’s compare calendars and pick a date! Since last week’s post, I’ve got a tennis ball sized pumpkin, tons of melon blossoms, tiny peppers and some yellow beans which should be ready to pick later this week. I met teenaged neighbours last night who were busy tending their family’s 3 plots, wow.


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