How does your garden grow?

There’s still time for gardening. Sure it’s the first of May but if you have the right soil, good sun and the last of the spring season plants, working a garden can be a great hobby, source of great home-grown veggies and a relaxing way to focus on something other than the issues of the day. Gardening in a community plot also offers fellowship and a learning experience.  
Chester Community Association (CCA), for the second year, worked with the Chesterfield Parks and Recs department to find and begin the early preparation for a safe and fertile place to test your green thumb.

But first the garden had to grow beyond hurdles that any project on Chesterfield property does. How will the arrangement be structured? What will be the water source for watering? Will it pass the taste test of the county attorney, Board of Supervisors and other county departments?

The short answer is yes. After being cultivated by Parks and Recs, the idea of a community garden for Chester and surrounding southeast Chesterfield came to fruition after the Board of Supervisors last week voted to allow the garden that is located next to the Chester House of Chester Road.

Elliott Fausz, CCA President, addressed the board during the April 25 meeting to thank Sarah Snead, director of Human Services, Mike Golden and Mark Askin, of Chesterfield’s Parks and Recs, Debbie Burcham, executive director of Health Services, Sharon van Pelt, manager of Chester House and Greg Fulk also with Chester House, in addition to Bermuda District Supervisor Dorothy Jaeckle.

The CCA has sponsored a number of projects during its 12 years, and according to Fausz this project fits right into the organization’s mission of “Enhance the community quality of life while creating a sense of place through the Chester Plan.”

“This will be a great project for the Chester Community Assoc. and the community, and an added value for the Village,” said Fausz.

Jaeckle said after approving the garden and responding to a thank you from Fausz, that she really likes community based projects and she thought the project would be a good addition to the community.

“They [county staff] work very hard to support the citizens and their projects,” she added.

The plot is a safe location for a garden, according to Fausz who has worked hard to bring the project to bloom. Surrounded by fences on three sides, the Chester House closes in the third side. There are some restrictions on parking but the Chester House has been very generous and cooperative by endorsing the garden.

Both the CCA and Chester House are looking forward to creating a new partnership through gardening.

Spaces vary in size from 20 feet by 20 to as small as 5 by 5 feet. Some garden soil and compost are currently being mixed with the existing soil to beef it up a little. Larry Madison, a horticulturist, is also involved in  assuring the soil is what is needed for successful growing.

The CCA is also reaching out to Chesterfield Master Gardeners to consult on growing techniques throughout the summer. For more information go to www.chestercommunity.com/garden for an application and rules or call Elliott Fausz for more information at (804) 405-5443.

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