Community garden

Extension agents Julie Gardner, left, and Pasquale Swaner inspect a plot at the community garden in Gatesville last year.

GATESVILLE — The spring growing season at the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service community garden is about to begin.

This will be the third season for the community garden and interest has remained high.

“The community garden is designed for new or experienced gardeners who wish to grow their own vegetables, learn more about gardening and become healthier through healthy eating habits,” said county Extension Agent Julie Gardner.

The new season will start at 10 a.m. Tuesday with a workday and plot assignments at the garden site next to the U.S. Post Office on Leon Street.

Participants are responsible for assisting with preparation, upkeep and general assistance of the garden throughout the growing season.

The community garden relies solely on rainwater captured from the roof of the post office and stored in a 3,000-gallon tank.

Last spring, 16 gardeners signed up for the 31 raised beds in the fenced enclosure. By the end of the season, only two had dropped out, Gardner said, and many of the gardeners planted a fall garden.

Most gardeners also cultivated two plots and some had three, and the harvest included tomatoes, squash, peppers, okra, watermelon, strawberries, thyme, chives, cilantro and eggplant.

However, this year, plots will be limited to two per person and are available on a first-come basis.

“Two years ago, when the project started, gardeners were asked to contribute some of their produce to the Care Center food bank,” Gardner said. “Last year, seven clients of the Care Center opted to plant and tend garden plots to grow their own food.”

Participants will be asked to sign a gardening agreement that outlines the rules and guidelines for the community garden. Anyone who wants to reserve a plot must do so by Tuesday by calling the County Extension Office at 254-865-2414.

Contact Tim Orwig at


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