“Community gardens provide a wide range of benefits including: improving the quality of life for people in the garden; acting as a catalyst for neighborhood and community development; stimulating social interaction; teaching self-reliance; expanding access to nutritious food; creating opportunity for recreation, exercise, therapy, and education; providing opportunities for intergenerational and cross-cultural connections; and helping children understand where their food comes from and how their food choices impact their bodies, the environment, and their communities at large.” (Sustainable Jersey)
The Ewing Community Gardens Association was formed in response to the need for organizing the gardeners who participate in gardening at the Ewing Community Gardens on Whitehead Road Extension. These gardens were revitalized during the 2013 season. The amount of space for cultivation was doubled with the clearing of land to the east of the prior year’s garden. It was mostly allowed to lie fallow for the 2013 gardening season. The entire area was enclosed in an 8′ deer fence, a huge relief for gardeners battling the many four footed critters in the area. An additional water source was also provided for the new space. Finally, working in cooperation with the Ewing Green Team members, a new governing organization was formed by the gardeners with its first election of officers in September. By-laws for the gardening organization were approved, as were guidelines for gardening on the site.
The 2014 gardening season was off to a fine start with the Site Cleanup held on March 22nd. With the assistance of about 20 TCNJ student volunteers, the gardeners extended the site paths by putting down wood chips to complete almost the entire perimeter. Clean up and other maintenance chores were performed and the gardens look in great shape for plowing and the coming season.
The mission of ECGA is:
- to represent the interests and concerns of the gardeners to the township;
- to recommend guidelines that serve the interests of all of the gardeners; and
- to organize and coordinate improvements and activities for the benefit of all gardeners.