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How we created a Community Garden...

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Bolton Community Garden
Official Opening, Ribbon Cutting and Potluck
Postponed to Rain Date
Sunday, 13 Sept, 4 and 5 pm

Saturday, 12 September

Bolton Community Garden

4 pm

The Official Opening and Ribbon Cutting

5 pm


See attachment below for details.




This Friday, 11 September, 7 pm, Bolton Town Hall

Seed Saving Lecture by Eugene "Pete" Christoph.

See attachment below for details.

July 23 Update

Hello All,

Listening to the rain brings pictures to mind of the plots at our garden which will have puddles. The water table is just too high this year. We are following up on a possible offer of soil, which we could use to raise the level of the afflicted plots. To think that in the spring we were all so concerned about having access to water!

This past Sunday, Joe drilled all the large holes. This was made possible by Tom, who came with his flatbed to drive Joe’s tractor to the garden and back to Joe’s house again. Sue and Charlie, Teresa and Kenyon, Matthew and Dominique, Rona, and Dick, groaning and straining their muscles, worked on getting stones out of the holes to make it possible for Joe to work his drill, while John B., Ada, John S. (Matt ‘s and Dominique’s son) plus a friend of his, distributed woodchips on the paths. The woodchips were donated by Lancaster Gardens. We are planning to get more Friday, weather permitting.

The fence-raising has run into some additional problems. Because of the high water table, the poles are going to need extra support. Teresa, Kenyon and Joe put their heads together and drew up plans to make sure that especially the tall poles on the corners and next to the gates will be securely anchored. Teresa is locating sources for the materials needed.

The garden actually is beginning to look quite nice. Many gardeners put in plants and seeds, even though the fence is not up yet. We strongly encourage the people who are waiting for the fence to be installed to work on their plot. The deer and rabbits so far have left the plants alone, even the corn and the beans that are coming up. Plots that have not received some tender loving care are beginning to show signs of neglect: grass is beginning to grow. This needs to be turned under.

We will not have a fence-raising party this weekend, but we need people to help distribute the woodchips. If you come to the garden to work on your plot, plan to spend some time on the woodchips. Milton left a small cart as well as other tools for anyone to use. Do bring some buckets. And bring bug dope; the mosquitoes are hungry.

Plan on helping with the fence next weekend.

Ada, Teresa, Rona.

July 2, 2009

The Bolton Community Garden is ready for planting. The garden plots are staked out and numbered. However, we have not yet received enough donations to get a fence up. Without the fence, seedlings are likely to be enjoyed by the large rabbit and deer population that share the field with the garden. If seedlings are put in now, they will be eaten.  If seeds are planted before the fence is up, their sprouts will be eaten also. It is recommended to only plant seeds with a long germination time.

Materials Needed! Our requests, published in the local newspapers, for new or used deer fence materials, have had limited result.  The fence will need to be 8 feet high, but can be build from narrower pieces or brightly colored wire can be used at the top.  Extra fencing is needed as well, made from chicken wire or so, to bury part-way (at least 18 inches) into the ground to discourage the rabbits from digging tunnels under the fence. The posts should be 10 - 12 feet long.  The perimeter of the garden is 414 feet, so a lot of supplies are required.  Lancaster Agway has donated 200 feet of 7' netting.   Please, look to see if you have any wire in good condition and especially posts you could donate so that gardening can start.  Right now, there is no worry about water!

Numerous letters have been written to local businesses requesting donations for the fence, posts, and gates. Replies, unfortunately, may take a week or two. Once all the materials are there, an email will be send out to encourage everyone to participate in the Fence Raising. We are hoping for the weekend of July 11 and 12.


To protect the Bolton Community Garden from deer and rabbits we need:

Metal Pipes:

        5 - 12 ft long - 1 received!

        6 - 10 ft long

T Posts (Green Garden Posts):

        23 - 4 ft long - RECEIVED!

Wood Poles (2x1'):

        23 - 8 ft long - RECEIVED!

Chicken Wire (1 inch mesh):

        420 ft - Vinyl Coated - RECEIVED!

Deer Netting (7 ft high):

        220 ft - RECEIVED!

Gates (7 ft high):

        4 - 3 ft. gates - received but two are short and we are looking for someone to work on them...


Contact Teresa at: 978_634_1723 or

DO NOT leave items at the Garden.


23 June update

The members of the newly-formed Bolton Community Garden would like to thank the many people who have been so helpful getting the garden area ready for planting. Volunteers have plowed, harrowed and tilled the soil; compost and lime have been donated as well as bags with leaves. People young and old have removed zillions of rocks of all sizes, while carefully relocating the beneficial toads that inhabit that area. However, we have one more plea.

Hear Yea; Hear Yea,

Contractors, Builders, Excavators, Handymen, Fixer-Uppers, Etc.:

The Bolton Community Garden’s land is ready for planting. The abundant deer and prolific rabbits are eagerly waiting for the first green sprouts to show up against the black soil. We, the people, are in desperate need of fencing to keep these critters out. Please, look at your stores of materials for fencing including brightly-colored wiring, posts and/or pipes – around 10-12 feet long is best - , gates, stakes and fence itself to see what you can donate to the garden. New or used but in good condition, we’ll take it if it can become part of a deer- and rabbit-proof fence. Have you ever had a vegetable garden but don’t anymore? Look around in your yard and in your barn or shed. There might be hidden treasures. The perimeter of the garden is around 420 feet, so we will need a large amount.

Please note that in accordance with the ordinances of the Town of Bolton, materials may not be dropped off at the garden. Instead, phone Teresa at 978 634-1723.

Thank you for your generosity.Community Garden Rock Bonanza

Another ten yards of compost has been delivered by Joe Donato at a very much discounted price. We are currently waiting for two more loads of donated compost. Once the weather clears up, Billy will spread out all the compost and the rest of the lime with his front end loader. Farmer Bob Coolidge will return to harrow the field which will mix all the compost and lime into the soil.

 Our North-east is famous for

A rock, a rock a rock, and more.



Toppled from some mountain height,








Carried by a glacier’s might,







Tumbled in a river’s stream,







Brought to our field as in a dream.







A rock, a rock a rock galore.

I cannot stand to see one more!


 June 15, 2009 Update

A big thank you to Reg Burgess from Hudson for bringing his tractor and rototiller and for the tilling of the garden area. There were eleven people all together to collect rocks and deposit them in the tractor’s bucket ahead of the tilling. We worked for almost three hours. Reg stayed to spread most of the about 2000 pounds of lime Chris Slade had donated and Billy Vattes hauled to the garden site. Tom kept Reg company.

Another ten yards of compost has been delivered by Joe Donato at a very much discounted price. We are currently waiting for two more loads of donated compost. Once the weather clears up, Billy will spread out all the compost and the rest of the lime with his front end loader. Farmer Bob Coolidge will return to harrow the field which will mix all the compost and lime into the soil.

On Saturday, June 20, at 1pm there will be the Rock Bonanza. It will be the last time we will get the rocks out of the garden collectively. Undoubtedly, there will still be many left for each plot owner to take care of. Reg is hoping that he will be able to come, help, and do some more tilling. The rocks are being put in a designated place. Bring gloves, bug spray, water, and a picnic lunch!


Please RSVP to Teresa at or 978-634-1723, or Ada at or 978-779-5081.


Hope to see you there!

We were advised not to add more lime to the soil this year since it would hurt the plants. Next spring, another 2500 pounds is going to be turned into the soil.    

June 2, 2009 update

We are all set to go! Farmer Bob Coolidge came with his plow today, June 2, and tilled the soil. The ground is very rocky, he warns, and he suggests using twice as much compost as has been donated so far, as well as loam, sawdust, and leaves. We are picking up one load of compost tomorrow, and more will be delivered another day. This then will need to be turned under together with lime and other nutrients.

On Sunday, we cleared an area of invasive bushes along the edge of the field to make space for a tractor or the town’’’’s mower to go around the garden. It is amazing how much brush there was in such a small area. The pile is huge. BPW will remove it. (Thank-you!)

A deer fence needs to be erected after all the tilling is done. Many hands are wanted for that. Once the date has been set, we will send out an email asking for you to come and help.

A heartfelt thank-you to the people who offered compost for the garden. We still are looking for more organic compost and top soil, as well as loam, sawdust and leaves. If you know of any, contact Teresa. We can come and pick it up, since a generous Bolton resident offered the use of his pick-up truck.

The Lion’’’’s Club invited us to give a presentation on the Community Garden on May 20. There was much interest. We received several offers of help. Some of the Lion’’’’s Club members will come and build raised beds for seniors. One or two of these beds will be high enough off the ground for wheelchair-bound people to use. We need leaves and hay bales to fill the the raised beds. Please, bag the leaves and let us know before you put them on the field against the bushes near the pallets.

Some Bolton Local members offered to assemble the compost bins. Thank you! However, there is still a lot that we need to get started.

April 30, 2009 update....Time to celebrate!  The Bolton Board of Selectmen officially accepted our proposal for the establishment of a Bolton Community Garden on the Lower Field of the former Bolton Fair Grounds.  One meeting still needs to take place, the one with the Conservation Commission.  During that meeting we will find out which measures we need to take to comply with their requirements.  These will mainly have to do with the preservation of our waterways.   Selectman Ken Troup will contact the owners of the Office Complex to work out parking, "tress passing" and possibly the use of the building's water supply.  Otherwise we will need to haul water to the garden.

There is still a lot that we need to get started.  Please see our
wish list and hopefully you can help out.  Contact Teresa to volunteer, donate or for more information at or  978-634-1723.  The Community Garden Application Form  and Pamphlet are attached below.
Since there are only four plots left, we also introduced to the selectmen the subject of the land on Farm Road that belongs to the Conservation Trust.  In coming years, we might need to establish a second Community Garden there.  We will start improving the soil as soon as possible, in other words right away, since there is no topsoil but only mainly gravel and sand. 

As mentioned at some point or another, the result of the soil tests came in.  It would have been great if we had been able to obtain a piece of land ready for plowing and sowing, but that was not the case.  The Lower Field needs to have organic matter added to its soil as well as lime and some other nutrients.  This is where we need to start working as a community: we need to ask every horse, llama, goat, rabbit and sheep owner in town for their manure.  Aged manure can go directly on the Lower Field.  Fresh manure can be deposited on the Farm Road land.  Of course, the delivery of this smelly "gold" will need to be organized and supervised.  What if we select two days, one for Garden 1 and another for Garden 2?  We need to get the Lower Field ready as soon as possible so that we can start plowing and planting.  It would be wonderful if we could get the aged-manure donors to deliver their loads next week Saturday, May 9.  Donations of compost would be absolutely wonderful too!  Let Rona, Teresa or me know as soon as possible the result of your quest for the humble endowments.  And yes, someone offered to plow the field!!!
Deliveries to Garden 2 can take place on a to-be-announced day.