Morgan Sherburne (231) 439-9394 - email@example.com
9:19 AM EDT, April 29, 2013
Cyndi Kramer, first-year director of the community garden at Hungry Hollow, has a few big ideas for the Petoskey garden this year.
First, she and the other organizers of the garden — Kramer works with the nonprofit Farming for our Future to oversee the garden — would like to finish the garden's irrigation system. Currently, she said, 26 of the 40 plots are irrigated.
Second, Kramer would like to see the garden turn into more of a community gathering space, and is talking with the city about constructing a small shelter for events.
"It would be a covered structure where we could have educational activities not standing either in the hot, hot sun or in any kind of drizzle," said Kramer.
Of course, these two plans would take a little bit of money — which is why Kramer has applied for a grant competition on Facebook called "Seeds of Change, Share the Good."
Community gardens submit proposals and try to garner support. The top 50 proposals will be considered by judges. Fifteen gardens will be selected to win a $10,000 grant, and one garden will win a $25,000 grant.
Kramer said she would be happy with a $10,000 grant — that would be more than enough to finish the irrigation system. But an extra $15,000 couldn't hurt. She would also like to turn a potential pavilion into a food-growing operation, with slatted walls gardeners can grow lettuce in.
"You attach gutters to the building, fill them with dirt and grow lettuce," said Kramer. "I think that is just the coolest thing."
Kramer said the garden also has 12 plots still open for gardeners this summer. A $35 fee gets gardeners a plot, access to water and compost.
Rene Bieganowski, a Petoskey resident, will be the garden's compost manager.
"I actually don't know what I'm getting into," said Bieganowski, who has composted for 15 years. "My hand went up before I realized it."
Bieganowski said there is compost currently on site, but she plans to distribute compost at various levels of readiness. Much of the compost will come from waste from the garden, but gardeners are welcome to bring kitchen scraps — except meat or bone — to add to the compost heaps.
"They can bring anything they want, but once they start using it, they will want some for their home, too," said Bieganowski. "But it's kind of like black gold. You won't want to give it away."
To sign up for a plot, or for more information, contact Cyndi Kramer at (231) 330-5575. Visit www.facebook.com/seedsofchange/ to vote for Hungry Hollow's garden grant proposal.