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Think Spring! Emmetsburg City Council Initiates Community Garden Plots

By Staff | Feb 3, 2009

It’s time to think about Spring. Seed catalogs are arriving in the mail and thoughts turn to planting a garden.

Don’t have enough land to plant a garden??The City of Emmetsburg will provide space for you.

The idea for a community garden came up several months ago, but too late for the 2008 planting season. The idea germinated through harvest and into winter and Emmetsburg City Council took action on a community garden at their Jan. 26 meeting.

“People are losing jobs and income,” said Mayor John Schad. “If they had a place where they could grow their own food, they would.”

An area on west 17th Street, near the old dog pound, had been identified last year as an area for garden plots. This is city property which could be used at no cost to city residnets.

Emmetsburg Councilman Cory Gramowski recommended that the council’s Public Properties Committee meet to set guidelines for prospective gardeners.

“If you have people willing to serve on a committee, go that route,” said Councilman Pat Degen.

Councilman Steve Finer questioned what the city’s liability would be. Councilman Brian Campbell thought it would be like a city park.

“There is always an assumption of risk,” City Attorney Brian Thul told the council. He recommended some type of waiver that participants would sign.

Mayor Schad told the council he would get a committee together to work out the details for a community garden.

Emmetsburg residents interested in planting a garden may take advantage of the new garden area. Plots will be made available for planting this Spring.

“The concept is to make unused land available for people who want to raise a garden but don’t have to space to do so,” commented Mayor Schad.

Interested parties are asked to contact Mayor John Schad via e-mail at johnschad@smartsbroadcast.com or by telephone at 712-852-5001. Participants will be asked to fill out an application form and also to sign a hold-harmless agreement. There is no charge for the gardening space.

Some ideas for prospective gardeners include: keeping their area clean and neat; they will supply their own seeds, plants, and equipment; at the end of the growing season, gardeners will be responsible for removing all garden refuse.