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Join the fun at the Garden

By Sustainability Office on August 2, 2014

If you have been following our blog, then you know that Colgate’s Community Garden has a new location.  This spring, we moved from College Street (near the Newell Apartments) to Broad Street, just south of the Townhouses and Community Hospital.  The garden team including interns Alex Schaff ‘16 and Quincy Pierce ‘16 and our garden manager, Beth Roy, have literally built the garden from the ground up!  The team tilled the field, built a compost bin, formed garden rows, weeded, planted seedlings, and are now harvesting our first vegetables (including zucchini, squash, peas, cucumbers, and spinach).

The garden team is working closely with the Hamilton Food Cupboard and Hamilton Central Schools to grow, share, and donate food.  We also offer fresh produce from our garden through a farm stand at 104 Broad Street every Tuesday at 5:00 p.m.

From left to right: Beth Roy, Quincy Pierce '16, Alex Schaff '16, and Prof. Christopher Henke

From left to right: Beth Roy, Quincy Pierce ’16, Alex Schaff ’16, and Prof. Christopher Henke at the new garden.

The garden team has been thrilled with all of the support and enthusiasm from community members throughout this summer.  A lot of new faces have stopped by to attend work parties, movie nights, and volunteer hours.  Others stop by to care for their own personal raised bed garden.

So, please, stop by to get your hands dirty or just to say hello and get a tour of the garden. All are welcome!  Check the Colgate Calendar for upcoming events.  Also, volunteer hours are on Monday and Friday from 2:00-3:00 p.m. and on Wednesday from 4:00-5:00 p.m.

For more information, email communitygarden@colgate.edu.


Apply to be a garden intern!

By Sustainability Office on July 31, 2014

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Hours per Week: 6 hrs during fall semester

Job Description:
The Sustainability Office is offering a paid Garden Internship to a qualified student starting in late-August 2014 until November 2014 (the end of the growing season). The garden intern will help manage and promote the one-half acre vegetable/herb garden and greenhouse on campus. This is a physically demanding, yet very rewarding job. Work includes exposure to outdoor elements (e.g., heat, sun, rain, etc.). The student intern is expected to coordinate and organize volunteers and student work parties. The Garden Intern will report directly to our garden manager (Beth Roy) and work in close collaboration with another garden intern and other Colgate students, faculty, and staff. The student intern will gain life-long skills and knowledge in harvesting and maintaining a garden, organizing events, and supervising volunteer workers.

Required Skills and Experience

Key Responsibilities:

  • Work with garden manager (Beth Roy) to plan and manage the garden during the fall season. Specific tasks may include preparing soil, cultivating, planting, weeding, and harvesting.

  • Organize and supervise volunteer work parties.

  • Coordinate with Green Thumbs presidents to schedule a weekly time for volunteer work parties (usually for harvest, the day before pick-up), and be at the garden during those scheduled times to supervise those work parties.

  • Provide continuity for work on the garden throughout the 2013 growing season.

  • Prepare for and run a weekly Farm Stand to sell produce from the garden.

Recommended Qualifications and Skills:

  • Strong work ethic and self-motivated.

  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills.

  • Preference will be given to those with experience and firsthand knowledge in farming and/or gardening with vegetable crops; though previous garden experience is not required.

  • Experience organizing and supervising the work of others.

  • Tolerance for hard work and exposure to outdoor elements.

  • Excitement about promoting local farming and local food production

Work Requirements and Benefits
The garden internship position is rewarding but demanding work that involves physical exertion and exposure to the outdoor elements.

Starting Hourly Rate: Fall semester – $8.50/hour (estimated because Financial Aid determines pay rate)

Supervisor: Beth Roy, Garden Manager

Key Contacts: John Pumilio, Director of Sustainability; Christopher Henke, Associate Professor and faculty advisor to the garden; Beth Roy, Colgate Community Garden Consultant

To apply, send a resume and one page cover letter to the Garden Manager, Beth Roy (eroy@colgate.edu) and fill out an application on the Colgate Portal.

The application deadline is August 15. Employment will begin on or around August 25.


Community garden hosts first farm stand of the summer

By Sustainability Office on July 17, 2014

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We held our first fabulous farm stand of the season on the evening of Tuesday, July 15th! The Colgate Community Garden Team as a whole would like to give a huge thanks to everyone who stopped by our stand on the porch of 104 Broad to take a taste of our chocolate chip zucchini bread and buy a few fresh veggies and herbs.  We are extremely grateful to have the privilege to connect the community to fresh produce from our garden.  The farm stand selection included zucchini, squash, peppers, radishes, peas, exactly one cucumber, and a few bunches of herbs.  We are happy to report every piece of produce sold.  Again, thank you to those who stopped by and gave their support.  We are looking forward to having community members over to the garden this fall to help harvest! Happy gardening!

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Thank you from the community garden!

By Sustainability Office on July 14, 2014

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The Colgate Community Garden team would like to give a huge thanks to all the volunteers who have been coming by to visit and lend a hand in the garden.  On July 1st, interns and professors from the SOAN department spent the morning helping us paint the greenhouse and plant a flower bed next to our herb garden.  The extra sets of hands made the work fly by like a breeze, and we were happy to be able to give a tour of the space and show how its grown in the past few weeks. A huge thanks to department head Professor Chris Henke for putting the work party together!

We’d also like to thank Kathy Harold from the Hamilton Center for the Arts for reaching out to us to do a vertical garden project with the kids at the HCA summer camp!  We had a lot of fun teaching the kids about gardening in a small space, and loved hearing about their gardens at home. We used a pallet, landscaping fabric, and chicken wire to create a standing-up space where plant’s roots can roam.

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This summer we are enjoying being able to connect with the surrounding community.  If you’re interested in visiting the Colgate Community Garden, keep an eye out for volunteer hours or send an e-mail to communitygarden@colgate.edu. Happy gardening!


Community garden hosts work party

By Sustainability Office on July 7, 2014

With a new herb garden installed, plants in the ground, and a cover crop of buckwheat successfully sprouting in the back corner, the community garden has been progressing beautifully.  On June 18th, we held our first work party of the season.  Approximately 30 attendees helped plant herbs including chives, oregano, mint, and creeping thyme among others.  After an hour of work, we had nearly all of our paths mulched, the rows of tomatoes prepared with straw to hold in moisture, and the rock floor of the greenhouse weeded.  The event finished with a dinner including Oliveris pizza and a “potluck” salad to which community members added their own veggies and dressings.  We are so grateful for the assistance and enthusiasm provided by the volunteers and look forward to inviting them back to the garden for another event in the near future!

Click here to learn more about this event.

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Let the gardening begin!

By Sustainability Office on June 10, 2014

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Colgate’s Community Garden has officially changed locations this summer and is looking forward to the growing season! The new garden is now located on Broad Street, just South of the Colgate townhouses and Community Hospital.  Colgate Community Garden interns Alex Schaff ‘16 and Quincy Pierce ‘16 are starting from the ground up, forming rows, building a compost bin, planting seedlings, and adapting to the new site.  Long-time friend of the garden, Sam Stradling from the Hamilton Food Cupboard, recently dropped off a plentiful load of plants ready to be planted in the garden.  This is the second year in a row Sam and the Food Cupboard have donated seedlings in exchange for produce to be harvested and donated by the Community Garden later in the season.

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We hope to hold events in the near future, and can’t wait to have visitors..stop by and have a look at all the work being done.  Or even better, come on down and get your hands dirty by helping out!  See you soon!


The New and Improved Colgate Community Garden

By Sustainability Office on March 24, 2014

rsz_greenhouse_snow_removalSpring is officially here and the Colgate Community Garden is getting a major face lift! Flooding at the current Newell apartment site last year proved to be too much to fully overcome. Over the winter the garden team and Green Thumbs members worked hard to put together a proposal to move the garden to a new location.

We are pleased to announce that, with the support of the University, the Colgate Community Garden will be relocating to a new (and flood-free) location for 2014! The new garden will be located just past the townhouses on Broad Street as you head south from campus. There is currently a greenhouse that was utilized in part by the garden team last year and plenty of land that does not flood on a regular basis, which could not be said for the Newell location!

Over the next few months, the garden team will be hard at work setting into action all of the plans that were made over the winter. First up is a major overhaul of the current greenhouse. The greenhouse will get a new covering and several new raised garden beds installed inside of it. Re-covering a greenhouse of this size (30 feet wide by 60 feet long) is much easier to do with lots of helping hands. Stay tuned for our announcements about how YOU can help with this project!

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Once the snow melts (thank you Upstate New York for yet another long winter…), there will be plenty more happening at the new garden site. Tasks will include tilling the grass, moving the garden fence from the old location, moving the shed, forming garden rows, moving plants, and of course planting seeds. Anyone who is interested can come down and lend a helping hand. The more help we get, the quicker we can be on our way to a successful garden this year!

Thanks to all who have helped with the garden so far, and we look forward to many more exciting times to come!


Colgate Community Garden Accepting Applications for 2014 Growing Season

By Sustainability Office on February 10, 2014

It is cold now, but soon enough buds will be bursting, plants will be sprouting, and birds will be singing.  It is time to start planning for the 2014 growing season.  We will be accepting applications for two interns through April 9, 2014.  Read below for more of the details.

Student in the Community Garden

Read more


Colgate Community Garden’s Fall 2013 Highlights

By Sustainability Office on November 10, 2013

Article submitted by garden interns Zoe Huston ’15 and Gabe Block ’15

After a long and wonderful season, we are wrapping things up at the Colgate Community Garden. We were able to grow vegetables right up until the end of October (thank you Hamilton, NY for providing us with those few extra weeks of sunshine) and implemented a number of new projects during the fall season. We finally had to pull the pumpkins, but we’re keeping our fingers crossed for a few remaining root vegetables.  In the meantime, here are some highlights from the fall growing season:

Community Garden Farm Stand
In an effort to bring fresh and homegrown produce to students up the hill, the garden interns set up a weekly farm stand in the O’Connor Campus Center (Coop). The interns harvested, weighed, and washed the produce on Sunday afternoons and displayed it for sale from 11:00-12:30 every Monday in the Coop. A wide variety of produce was available each week, ranging from the famously delicious cherry tomatoes to the more obscure daikon radishes. An assortment of lettuces, herbs, peppers, and cucumbers were also available for purchase. To make veggies more accessible to students, customers had the option to pay directly with their ‘Gate Card. Proceeds went to the community garden, and excess produce was donated to the Hamilton Food Cupboard. Be on the lookout for a Farm Stand again in the Spring!

Green Thumbs Work Parties
The Green Thumbs club was able to come down to the garden a few times this semester to work on larger scale projects. In October, the club helped lay down recycled cardboard to create walking paths around the herb garden and between beds. We used wood chips that had been washed up from the flooding during the summer to cover the cardboard and mark the pathways. The Thumbs were also able to help harvest produce for the Monday farm stands in the Coop.

Cold Frame Project
In order to extend the garden’s relatively short season (even shorter no thanks to the flood!), the Community Garden teamed up with Green Thumbs to build cold frames. These are structures that are built around the garden to help plants continue to grow even as it gets colder outside – almost like mini green houses. They can be made from miscellaneous materials and built right over existing crops. We built two different styles of cold frames; one with panels and a hinged lid, and one made of a frame of hay bales with two windows resting on top. Two weeks after building the cold frames and planting seeds, our first seedlings appeared!  We will be checking in on them throughout the winter and early spring to see how they fare in the cold weather.


Using Cold Frames to Extend the Growing Season

By Sustainability Office on October 16, 2013

In Upstate New York, the gardening season can sometimes feel extremely short.  The average time between the last frost in the Spring and the first frost in the Fall is about 144 days… not even half of a year!

Cold frames are structures designed to extend the growing season in cold climate gardening. They can be used at the start of a season, or at the end of a season. They are smaller than typical greenhouses, easy to move around the garden or even place over existing plants or shrubs.

Visit Organic Gardening’s website for some terrific information about cold frames and how you can extend your own gardening season.

Green Thumbs and the Colgate Community Garden team will also be hosting an event this weekend to learn more about cold frames. There are many different ways to create a cold frame that will suit your gardening needs, and we will be building 2 different ones on Sunday.

The event will take place on Sunday, October 20 at 4:30 pm at the Colgate Community Garden behind the Newell apartments on College Street.  Come on down and see how easy it can be to add an extra 30-60 days to your own growing season!  Hope to see you there!

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