Hospitality Grounds community garden has sprouted
After years of planning, Shannon van Der Bosch, Sandra Jones and Aimee Altizer finally organized the Hospitality Grounds last spring.
The project is a community garden set up in the eastern section of an open lot next to St. Luke’s Episcopal Church and van Der Bosch is spreading the word.
"We want everyone to know it’s a garden for the community and not just a St. Luke’s Church thing," van Der Bosch said to The Park Record. "It reflects hope and offers intentional hospitality to everyone in the community, regardless of faith."
The idea for a community garden in the space had been whispered about for years.
"Sandra, Aimee and I gathered last spring over dinner with a representative with Summit County Gardens to discuss the feasibility of bringing our vision into a reality," van Der Bosch said. "After spending last summer visiting other community gardens and businesses who have donated building supplies to us, we explored the possibilities, and had our first building party last fall."
During that event, the three and other community members built the garden beds.
"To date, we have built six garden beds that measure four feet by 20 feet, and we’re gong to rent them out for in four-foot by five-foot spaces for $50 a year," van Der Bosch said. "There is a $25 refundable deposit that ensures the beds are cleaned out at the end of the season in the fall."
The spaces are available for anyone in the community to rent.
"We just want to be sure those that do will be dedicated to keeping up the garden," van Der Bosch said. "We require the gardeners put in a certain amount of hours in the work parties to maintain the project.
"We will also encourage groups to rent spaces so many people can share and trade off the maintenance workload," she said.
In addition, scholarships will be offered to people who can’t afford a garden bed, but want one.
"It’s a great opportunity for other developments, and our hope is to continue building more beds so we can meet any demand," van Der Bosch said. "The lot is rather large and we have great opportunity for growth."
What is grown will be up to the independent gardeners.
"They can grow veggies or flowers," she said. "It’s really their call."
One of the hopes for Hospitality Grounds is to keep in touch with Summit County Gardens events, so renters can work with professional gardeners for educational opportunities about what types of vegetables and plants grow in the Park City climate.
"Also, since we have a short window for growing opportunities in our environment, we are recommending people start planting their seeds so we can transfer the plants to their garden spaces in June," van Der Bosch said. "It’s going to be a learning and growing experience for all of us. There is a lot to learn and time is on our side."
Another goal is to harvest enough produce to donate to the Peace House or the Park City Christian Center Food Bank
"We want the community garden to be a community garden and not just some place to grown things when you don’t have space where you live," van Der Bosch said. "We want it to bring unity in our community."
The idea for naming the garden Hospitality Grounds is rooted in a quote by arborist William Bryant Logan.
"He said, ‘Hospitality is the fundamental virtue of the soil. It makes room. It shares. It neutralizes poisons. And so it heals. This is what the soil teaches. If you want to be remembered, give yourself away,’" van Der Bosch said. "This ties in with the some of the values of St. Luke’s, but not to be taken in a churchy way."
What van Der Bosch would love to see in the near future is the inclusion of a topiary labyrinth.
"That would provide a spiritual experience of meditation that would complement the experience of planting and nurturing a garden," she said. "We would also like to build compost bins and tool sheds to complete the garden.
There are two different ways to obtain information about renting a bed.
"We have a blog at hospitalitygrounds.wordpress.com and a Facebook page," van Der Bosch said. "On those pages, we have links to the terms and conditions agreements."
People can also contact van Der Bosch at (801) 597-8560.
"We’re grateful to the surrounding neighborhood for welcoming us and the community-garden concept," she said. "We hope it will grow beyond our expectations."
On Sunday, April 21, Hospitality Grounds, a Community Garden, located at 4595 N. Silver Springs Dr, next to St. Luke’s Episcopal Church will hold another work party beginning at 12:30 p.m. Please contact Shannon Van Der Bosch with any questions at (801) 597-8560.
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