Gardening Know How Sponsorship Recipient: Summerloch Green Community Garden

This
year, Gardening Know How’s School and Community Garden Sponsorship Program was
fortunate enough to help support 20 gardens with $1,000 each. These gardens
represent a wide array of community and school programs, from Florida to
Saskatchewan and many places in between. Each has its own unique and powerful
story, and we’re excited to share them with you. Every other week we’ll
highlight one of our sponsorship recipients to help spread the word about how
amazing they really are. This week we’re featuring the Summerloch Green Community Garden.

Summerloch Green is a small
retirement community in Casselberry, Florida, a city of about 26,000 people.
While the community has several recreational activities, it’s always gone
without a garden. And with a large number of its residents living on social
security checks alone, fresh produce hasn’t always been at the forefront in
everyone’s kitchens.

That’s going to change this
year, however, as the Summerloch Green Community Garden breaks ground in its
first season of operation.

The brand new garden board
has been given a given a piece of land by the community, and as we speak, it is
being leveled and graded to create a “blank canvas where we expect to create a
masterpiece,” according to Raymond Simmons, one of the masterminds behind the
new garden. Soon the beds will be installed, including several elevated beds
specifically designed for the inclusion of elderly and handicapped community
members. A few prototypes have already been built.

Prototypes of Elevated Beds

Once the beds are in place,
it’ll be time for planting under the supervision of a resident Master Gardener.
The planting will begin with vegetables and herbs that will be donated to the
community’s food bank, a service so many residents rely upon. Since Casselberry
is located in central Florida, it’s gifted with a near year-long growing season
and will be able to provide fresh produce the whole year through.

Raymond also has plans to
add a sensory garden, “so
people may enjoy the sight, taste, feel and smell of select plants.”

With the grant from Gardening Know How, the Summerloch Green Community Garden will be
bringing its residents fresh local food and giving them a place to get in touch
with nature and put their hands in the dirt. We’re proud to be able to help
them realize this dream.