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Community organization focused on environmental issues

Come Grow With Us at the Ewing Community Gardens

Spring is not far off and it’s time to get involved in community gardening in Ewing.  The Ewing Green Team invites interested residents to be a part of the “grow local” movement and register for a garden plot at the Ewing Community Gardens on Whitehead Road Extension.   Returning gardeners can register beginning on March 1st.  New applicants may register beginning March 15th.    Plots are limited so come early.

There is an active gardening organization so be sure to meet your neighbors and get involved.  Regular site clean ups will be held.

Registration Details for the 2018 Gardening Season

The 2018 Registration for Garden Plots at the Ewing Community Gardens on Whitehead Road Extension Will Begin in March in the

Office of the Clerk (2nd floor)
2 Jake Garzio Drive
Ewing, NJ 08628

Plots are $5.00 each and you can purchase up to two plots.

Registration Dates

  • Thursday, March 1, 2018 Registration will Open for Previous Year Plot Holders
  • Thursday, March 15, 2018 Registration will Open for New Applicants

Owners of Plots in 2017 will have an opportunity to reserve their same plots from the prior year.

If there are still plots available on April 15th, 2018 you may purchase additional plot(s). Please call the clerk’s office at (609) 538-7608 to find out if more plots are available.

Requirements

You must be present to buy your plot(s).

Ewing Township residents only (proof of residency is required) No Exceptions!!!

The official opening of the gardens is weather determined and announced later in the season.


For information about the Ewing Community Gardens Association email ewingcommunitygardens@gmail.com.  Look for the upcoming ad in the March Ewing Observer.

Registration for Plots to Begin March 1

Attention Ewing Township Resident Gardeners!

Mayor Bert Steinmann Announces

The 2016 Registration For Garden Plots At The Ewing Community Gardens On Whitehead Road Extension Will Begin In March In The Office Of The Clerk, 2 Jake Garzio Drive, Ewing, NJ 08628

The Plots Are $5.00 Each And You Can Purchase Up To Two Plots

Registration Dates

MARCH 1st, 2016 Registration Will Open For Previous Year Plot Holders

MARCH 15th, 2016 Registration Will Open For New Applicants

OWNERS OF PLOTS IN 2015 WILL HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO RESERVE THEIR SAME PLOTS FROM THE PRIOR YEAR

If There Are Still Plots Available On April 15th, 2016 You May Purchase Additional Plot(S). Please Call The Clerk’s Office At (609) 538-7608 To Find Out If More Plots Are Available.

REQUIREMENTS

  • You Must Be Present To Buy Your Plot(s).
  • You Must Be A Ewing Township Resident (Proof Of Residency Is Required) No Exceptions!!!

The Official Opening Of The Gardens Will Be Weather Determined And Announced Later In The Season.

For Information About The Ewing Community Gardens Association Email Ewingcommunitygardens@Gmail.Com

Spring 2016 Organizational Meeting Feb 17

meetingby Pete Boughton

Those of you planning to sign up for Ewing Community Gardens plots at Whitehead Road Extension this Spring, please mark your calendars for 7 pm on Weds Feb 17 at the Ewing Sr & Community Center for the first organizational meeting of the season.

Registration

Look for confirmed registration information in the March edition of the Ewing Observer that is mailed to every household in the township.   But for now:
  • Registration for returning gardeners should begin on March 1st.
  • Registration for new gardeners should begin on March 15th.
Register in person at the Township Clerk’s office on the upper level of the Municipal Building.  Each resident is entitled to register for 2 plots.
  • After April 15th if there are still unclaimed plots, you may register for more.

We intend to check with the Township offices on the following prior to the meeting:

  •  confirming signup timing and details with the Township Clerk, and
  • with Parks and Rec on their tentative schedule of activities for tilling of the non-organic half of the gardens, and the dates for turning on the water and porta-potty placement.

We also should consider who if any wish to keep the Garden Council alive, and who if any is willing to be the go-between to the Township on needs and wishes and concerns.

If you have neighbors or relatives intending to garden this year, please get their contact info to us via our web form at https://ewingcommunitygardens.wordpress.com/learn-more/.

So as the first serious winter snowstorm rolls in, think Spring flowers, veggie sprouts, bird songs, honeybees & little critters.

Garden Update

All plots have been claimed  for the 2015 gardening season!

Check out the final plot map here.  Click on the map to enlarge it.plotmap

Many thanks to everyone who came out last Saturday for the site clean up.  Though it was cold, a lot was accomplished.   We’ll look to connect with you all again at the gardens and at the April 15th 6:30pm meeting there.

FYI, for those in the inorganic section, the township hopes to till some time this week weather permitting.

The 2015 Gardening Season Begins!

2015plotlayoutWelcome to the unofficial start of the 2015 gardening season! We’ll begin with a garden clean-up this Saturday, March 28th and gardening can begin in the non-organic plots as soon as the soil is tilled the week after, and in organic, non-tilled plots, gardening can begin any time!

Announcements and updates

  1. Ewing Community Gardening Association (ECGA)
    The ECGA is a township-recognized organization formed two years ago to serve as a liaison between gardeners and the township, plan and implement improvements to the garden site, develop guidelines for successful community gardening, and to create a community of gardeners. We meet monthly to make plans and socialize; you’ll receive occasional emails with announcements and reminders, and they’ll be posted on the garden site kiosk as well. Michael Nordquist is chair of the association and can be reached at ewingcommunitygardens@gmail.com. More information about the ECGA and gardening at the Ewing Community Gardens, including guidelines, can be found at this website: https://ewingcommunitygardens.wordpress.com/
  2. March 28, 10am-4pm: Garden Site Clean-Up
    This Saturday, March 28th, we’ll have a community garden clean up and workday, with assistance from TCNJ students. All gardeners are requested to come and help prepare the site for tilling, maintain the paths, and make some general improvements to the site as a whole.  The community garden only exists because of the work that gardeners do for it; please do your part to make this important resource available to you and others now and in the future.
    We will be cleaning up any trash, debris, or materials left from last year and working on extending the paths for the coming season.   If you still have materials in your (non-organic) plots from last year, please use this as an opportunity to remove them. The township will be tilling the site shortly after this date, and we need to have the ground clear of anything that could damage or get caught in the tiller. If you have a site on the organic/east side of the plot, since your site will not be tilled, you can leave your materials there, if you desire.Any reusable materials that are removed from the non-organic plots will be set either along the fence or in the common plots near the back center of the site. If unclaimed by April 15th, the materials will be made available to anyone who would like them.Please bring gloves, tools (pitchforks, shovels, rakes), your wheelbarrows, cardboard for path maintenance, wear warm clothes, and work with some of your fellow gardeners to put the gardens in a good order for the beginning of the season.
  3. Registration Update
    As of March 18, only 17 of 102 plots remain unclaimed. If you know of folks who are interested in getting plots, tell them to act soon! As of April 15, unclaimed plots will be made available to gardeners who would like more than two plots.
  4. New Gardeners Mentoring Program
    This year, we would like to match new gardeners with returning gardeners so the new gardeners have someone to go to with their basic and more complicated questions. Of course, everyone should always feel free to ask anyone around the garden; we’re generally helpful people.
    Returning gardeners
    If you’re willing to be someone’s mentor, please email this account to let me know. You don’t need to be an expert, just have a few years of gardening at the site and be willing to be available occasionally to new gardeners.
    New gardeners
    If you’re interested in having a mentor, please email this account and we’ll try to match you up with someone. Also, if you’re interested in being part of a new gardeners’ email group for sharing information and experience with one another, please email this account to let me know and I’ll set that up.
  5. Isles Garden Support Network
    For any interested gardeners, we will be purchasing a membership to Isles Garden Support Network. Isles, Inc., a Trenton-based community development organization, offers a series of workshops to new community gardeners to provide basic introductions to principles and practices of gardening. As members, any Ewing Community gardeners will be able to participate in their workshops. You can find more information about Isles Urban Agriculture program here and a schedule of the garden workshops here.
  6. Next meeting and Garden Orientation: April 15th, 6:30pm, at the garden
    Our next meeting will be held at the garden. We’ll do a brief overview and orientation of the garden for new gardeners, going over the general guidelines and answering any questions gardeners may have. The earlier 6:30pm start time will allow us about an hour before official sundown. If there’s bad weather, I’ll send out an email that afternoon and we’ll meet at the ESCC instead.
    New gardeners
    Please plan on coming if you can so you can meet fellow gardeners and learn about the general practices at the garden.
    Returning gardeners
    Please plan on coming so you can meet fellow gardeners and offer up your guidance and mentoring skills to new and other returning gardeners.

March 20th marked the official start of spring, even as it snowed on us.  Order your seeds, plant your seedlings, and start planning out your garden plot!

 

Ewing Community Gardeners Will Meet to Plan for 2015 Gardening Season

The January meeting of the Ewing Community Gardens will be held on Wednesday, Jan 21st from  7 – 8:30 p.m. at the Ewing Senior and Community Center in the Board Room, 999 Lower Ferry Road.  There are a number of housekeeping items to attend to, including the election to determine the garden leadership for the coming gardening season.  All 2014 plotholders are eligible to vote.  Please come and help determine the future of Ewing’s community of gardeners.

Share Your Favorite Recipe With Your Fellow Gardeners

We have all begun to reap our garden harvests and have surely been enjoying some excellent home made food dishes by this time of the season.  Spread the benefits and delights of fresh, healthy, home grown food by sharing your recipes with your fellow gardeners. Just email your favorite recipe to ewingcommunitygardens@gmail.com and it will be posted to our recipes page. Here is an example of a different recipe for using eggplant that makes use of my eggplant surplus:

caponataEggplant Caponata Sandwiches with Mozzarella & Basil

[Makes 5 cups of caponata – abt. 10 sandwiches]

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 medium eggplant, peeled & cut into small cubes
  • ½ diced green pepper
  • 1 sm. diced onion
  • 4 oz. chopped white mushrooms
  • 3 cloves garlic – minced
  • ½ cup black olives – pitted and sliced
  • 1 6oz. can tomato paste
  • 3 tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1 ½ tsp. sugar
  • ½ tsp. dried oregano
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Baguette
  • Fresh mozzarella – 2 thick slices per sandwich
  • Fresh basil leaves

Directions

  1. Heat oil and add eggplant, pepper, onions, mushrooms and garlic. Season with Salt & Pepper. Cook for abt 10 minutes.
  2. Add olives, tomato paste, vinegar, sugar & oregano. Season again with S & P. Lower heat to medium – low, cover and cook for 30 min. Stir a few times during cooking. Add a tbsp. or 2 of water if the mixture is too thick.
  3. Allow Caponata to cool.
  4. Spoon onto bread, top with mozzarella and basil and serve.
  5. Or, serve warm as a dip.

July Meeting Updates

Highlights from the July meeting are listed below.  Please contact the ECGA if you have any questions or concerns.

Unmaintained Plots

weedsAt the last ECGA meeting, volunteers agreed to maintain and/or plant in unmaintained and unclaimed plots so that the weed population is kept under control. If a plot neighboring yours is not being maintained, please contact the Community Gardens Association and we’ll try to assign someone to it, if someone hasn’t been assigned already. We’re in the process of updating the plot layout map on the website to reflect the volunteers’ efforts.  Below is a picture of the assignments as we know them at this point.  (click on it to enlarge the image)

plotlayoutjuly222014

Food Donations

We have not had an organized system to donate excess produce in the past. Starting this week, Michael Nordquist will collect any unwanted and decent quality food on Wednesday mornings to deliver to Mercer Street Friends, which then distributes it to food pantries in Ewing and the region. Each week, on Tuesday afternoon/evening, a crate or basket will be placed on or under the picnic table to collect food donations. On Wednesday morning, between 9am and 10am, he or a TCNJ Bonner will come by to collect and donate the food. We’ll see how this works for a few weeks and adjust as needed. This will start this week – July 23,2014 – so there should be a bin on the picnic table tomorrow afternoon to be picked up on Wednesday morning.

Hoses

There have been requests to put any hose that you use back in the general area and in the general condition in which you found it. Please do so.

Harvest Celebration

A suggestion was made at the last meeting that we hold a Ewing Community Garden Harvest celebration this year in September.  We are currently planning to hold a site wide clean up on Saturday morning, September 20th with a contingent of TCNJ student volunteers.  The picnic could be held during the afternoon.  More to come…