Community Garden Unrecognized


The Community Gardens group is responsible for the general maintenance and development of the open garden spaces. The group also serves as a forum for skill and knowledge sharing in the fields of ecology, agriculture, permacultural design and many other food related topics. Activities include upkeep of structures (the tool shed, fences, and the arbor), planting and management of perennial and annual plants, and coordination of independent student projects. Meetings, community project days, potlucks, and workshops all serve to educate and empower students through active engagement with the principles and practices of community focused gardening and food production.

The garden also has an awesome Community Oven.

Connect With the Community Garden & Earn CEL Credit

  • Join the garden list-serve:
  • Join the facebook group:!/groups/HCgarden/

The Community Garden is a great way for Div I students to complete the CEL-1 requirement! For more information: and

Current Community Garden Projects

Garden Re-Build Fall 2014

Current Working Design

File:RR-SITE-PLAN-2013-0715-2.pdf RR-SITE-PLAN-2013-0715-2.jpg

Poison Ivy Removal

There is a Valley-based organization called Goat Girls who bring a pair of goats around for a price after a consultation and estimate session to eat PI or trim undergrowth. Totally sustainable, no herbicides needed, no one gets PI after digging. Also, apparently the PI oils do show up in goat hair after they eat it. So they should not be petted right afterwards.

Raised Beds Ideas

Paste and type ideas for building raised beds, include links to good info sites

Here is a page on raised bed construction using small branches. Any small branches or prunings from trees would make an attractive and natural raised bed. I think substituting bamboo would also work, especially since it is quite abundant in the community garden. (Below is a more formal proposal for application in our garden).

One proposal for raised bed design in the redesign of the community garden is a “bamboo stick wall” design. This is made by putting many pieces of bamboo (cut to size) vertically into the ground, several sections wide to form a rectangular garden bed frame. The wall is reinforced with four pieces of wood extending the length of each wall, held in place either with nails, or fastened tight to the stick wall with twine. There are several major advantages to this style of construction. Firstly, the materials necessary to build these beds are for the most part available at Hampshire already. The community garden already has a significant amount of bamboo which could be harvested for no cost. Other materials that could be used in supplement to the bamboo are sticks that have been pruned from trees on campus. Another advantage is that there is zero carbon impact. Little to no motor transportation of materials will be necessary. Plus, bamboo can be considered a renewable resource due to its rapid regrowth. Construction of the beds would be done by hand, so no fuel-burning machinery will be involved in the building phase. The monetary cost will be lean — there may be some cost for nails, small sections of lumber, or twine/rope. The beds will be easily maintainable, so they should have great longevity. The timetable for collecting materials and building the beds should be fair: a conservative guess would be 1 bed per class period. However, with a whole mess of college kids working all at once, it could very well be faster than that.


Our goal is to create raised beds using Hugle-Kulture, which is a method of forming raised beds by creating mounds of soil-covered woody debris. The debris will come from around Hampshire’s campus and woods, making the cost zero and the source extremely local. Logs have mycelium in them already and can be a habitat for other small insects/amphibians/spiders, etc. and can act as a sort of water buffer to absorb and release moisture. Each mound will be surrounded with a short bamboo or rock wall for aesthetic and durability purposes. Both of these materials can come from the Hampshire garden/woods.

We will use a range of different wood types and sizes to simultaneously experiment on the effect of different woody plants and their effectiveness at decomposition and promoting a healthy garden by potentially supplying essential nutrients to the soil. Oak, pine, small shrubs, maple branches or chips, already decomposing logs, and mulch hay are all going to be used in the beds.


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[Black Locust, Robinia, False Acacia]

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Milled rough-cut locust boards in Colrain MA for $5.65 per foot at 12 inches wide – if beds are 4 ft by 6 ft, how much lumber nad $ per bed if 1 ft tall? 2 ft?

How far is Colrain from Amherst?

Repurposed Materials


  • Sources?
  • Reconstruction?


Recovered masonry

  • bricks, blocks?

Question: How far are we willing to go for free things?

Woven saplings, bamboo

Work Groups

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Matt, ???, Morgan, Alex, Cindy Ben, Chad Ben, Maggie, Peter, Chava Frank, Matt, Alex, Scott, Annie, Nick
Tristan, Annie, Nick, Molly, Jack, Tony Grace, Connor, Josia, Sarah, Cindy, Dineen Tristan, Annie, Molly, Nick, Stevie

Work Diary

Wednesday 12 September 2013

cut back bamboo, harvested and cleaned stems for projects (trellises, wattle walls, etc)

dug up and saved asparagus crowns (store dry and cool in paper bags – Farm Center Root Cellar?)

dug up and saved mint shoots and roots (need to pot up in CSC greenhouse)

Garden Redesign Spring 2013:

Here is a map of the Community Garden. During the Spring 2013 semester the Community Garden student group will be creating a redesign of the Garden and will be planning its implementation. We encourage the participation and input of all student groups in this process!

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Work with Rehamping: Currently, the Community Garden student group is working in collaboration with Rehamping, an architecture student group on campus, on The Barn Project

  • The barn will be placed adjacent to the garden and will house the student food co-op, Mixed Nuts

Garden Shed Project: Also, Thanks to the efforts of Sue Pickering, over the summer of 2012 the community garden got a brand new tool shed! It is located in the back of the garden by the Prescott path, and though it will be locked community garden members will have access to it.

Here are three photos of the shed. The first two were taken before the Community Garden student group painted it, and the third was taken after we painted it.

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Thank you for visiting the Community Garden Hampedia page, and check back for updates soon!