Group Work Makes Short Work of Garden Work

2019, more than any of our previous years, was most definitely the Year of the Group. We had more teams working in the garden, transforming more of our spaces, than any other year. Here is a look back on their accomplishments.

Children's Hand Garden After RestorationCognizant Work Group


On May 10, a large group of grade 11 and 12 students from Upper Madison College High School did a group volunteer shift in the garden, They shifted untold number of wheelbarrow loads of compost and wood chips, constructed a fence to hold the leaf compost, weeded, teepeed and planted snow peas, planted lavender and herbs, and completely cleared our square foot garden bed for planting. Thank you also to instructors Danna and John for all their work.


On June 11, a youth group visiting from Northern Pennsylvania completely restored our overgrown “children’s hand” garden. Emma, CC, Natalie, and Emily, accompanied by Bill and Rachel, spent hours puling out weeds, pruning herbs and trucking wood chips to restore this garden space intended for small children to get up close to garden plants.


Restored PNG OrchardNewly transplanted Raspberry PatchJuly through September saw pals Suz, Chad and Anthony take on and conquer some of our biggest challenges this year, including a complete clean up of our orchard, and replanting of our raspberry bushes.


On August 14, campers from the Gibson House Farmer, Baker, Toymaker day camp visited the garden and showed a surprisingly good knowledge of their veggies and herbs and we tried out our early Sungold tomatoes together.


Throughout September, work teams from our nearby Cognizant offices rotated through many garden activities, including weeding, pruning, harvesting, watering, planting bulbs, and rating our hot peppers.


On October 3, a group of work colleagues from Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Company donated their time back to the community as they always do, I warrant it is generally nicer weather when they do so, though! It was a cold and grey day but the troopers came anyway. Tammy, Anita, Tom, Bill, Achiel and Dario weeded and mulched an area in the north of the garden and harvested every single one of the hot peppers.