Westview Community Garden Work Day

Westview Community Garden Work Day

The first official work day in the garden following the acquisition of the land took place on October 10th, with food and drink provided by Fresh2Health and LeLovebird.

Please feel free to join the Garden Committee every Saturday from 10:00am-2:00pm at 1439 S Gordon Street.

To see photos of the work day view the photo gallery below.

Fall/Winter Garden Planting

Westview Community Garden“Welcome Back Westview” – Join the Westview Community Organizations’ Garden Committee, the Atlanta Community Food Bank, and FoodCorps volunteers to get ready for the fall/winter garden at 1439 South Gordon Street.

Yummy food from local farms will be there just for you.

This is our land – it’s time to get to work!

Westview Community Garden

Neighbors Rally to Save Community Garden

The idea of the Westview Community Garden first came to fruition in December 2009 when neighbors were presented with an opportunity to turn a wide vacant lot on South Gordon Street into a community garden. After the Westview Community Organization signed a 3-year lease with the owner plans were started for the 2010 growing season.

The original concept of the garden was for community members to purchase a plot for the year, allowing each plot owner to be in charge of their own area and what was grown. A separate area was designated for shared land so that crops that would perform better in groups, such as corn, could be grown for everyone. The participating gardeners held work days to till the land and build raised beds, and additional work days were held throughout the year to work on keeping the common areas clean.

Over time an emphasis was placed on needing to work with neighborhood youth to teach them where food comes from, how to garden, and providing a sense of pride for their accomplishments when vegetables and fruits were ready to be harvested. In turn the garden took a shift from the individual plot concept to a shared community garden concept where everyone would work in the garden and could enjoy the crops.

The gardeners additionally worked to receive grants to build a garden shed and a chicken coop (it should be noted the plans never materialized to the point of chickens being at the garden), hosted various volunteer groups for garden maintenance, a rain barrel workshop, and were featured in the BeltLine newsletter and as a stop on bicycles tours of Atlanta-area gardens.

While the community garden continued to function, a series of unfortunate background events occurred that would lead to the sudden and surprising end of the garden in March 2015. The owner with whom the community had signed the lease passed away in 2012. After the lease expired at the end of 2013 the community unsuccessfully attempted to contact the heir to renew the lease, and hence the community continued to garden on the land as “tenants at sufferance” (i.e. continuing to occupy the space with an expired lease but without being asked to leave by the owner). Unbeknownst to the gardeners the property fell into foreclosure in April 2014 and was taken over by Capitol City Bank. Capitol City Bank would collapse in February 2015, leaving the FDIC to take over the bank’s assets, including the Westview Community Garden. Community members became aware of the situation when a “No Trespassing” signed appeared in the garden at the beginning of March, followed by a bulldozer at the end of March.

Thanks to the swift action of alert neighbors, members were able to rally and jump into action and salvage the majority of the garden shed. A vote was taken at the April Westview Community Organization meeting to raise the funds for the community to officially acquire the land. The community is currently in negotiations with the FDIC to buy the land. If successful, a fundraiser will be held to raise the money to pay for the land, officially making the garden a community owned asset.

We hope our next article about the garden will be a positive one with a happy ending. In the meanwhile you can read the thorough Creative Loafing article, “Westview Community Garden demolished, but not the neighborhood’s dreams,” as well as take a trip down memory lane with pictures of the garden from our archive:

Kids Stop by Community Garden

Kids Stop by Community Garden

The neighborhood “garden babies” came to visit the community garden and check on and harvest the vegetables that they helped plant. It is a beautiful sight to see how much our children remember what we teach them!

To see photos of the children at the garden view the photo gallery below or visit the Westview Facebook page.

Westview Youth Summer Art Camp

Youth Summer Art Camp

Westview youth will be participating in an art summer camp through August 1st. A kick-off meet-and-greet for the kids and their families was hosted in the Westview Communal Garden on South Gordon Street with music, activities, and learning about growing and harvesting food.

To view photos of the meet-and-greet view the photo gallery below or visit the Westview Facebook page.

Westview Garden Harvest

Westview Garden Harvest

Westview neighbors were able to reap the Westview Community Garden’s first big harvest of the season – tomatoes, peppers, beans, okra, cucumbers, and fruit were picked.

Westview Pizza Café received all of the tomatoes, many of the peppers, some okra and a couple of cucumbers to incorporate into their menu. D Café used some cucumbers for their menu as well, and additional cucumbers were given away to a neighbor on South Gordon Street. Talk about truly local garden-to-table for our Westview restaurants!

Please join community members at the Westview Community Garden (1439 S. Gordon Street) every Saturday from 10:00am to 2:00pm.

To view photos of the Westview garden harvest view the photo gallery below (click “continue reading”) or visit the Westview Facebook page.

Continue reading

Garden Planting

Garden Planting & Shed Construction

On Saturday, May 10th, community members came back together to continue work at the Westview Community Garden. Additional beds were prepared, kids received instructions on how to put plants in the ground, and construction-oriented neighbors continued work on the shed by adding a gutter to collect rain water. Also notice the still-in-progress artwork on the shed wall!

To view photos of the garden work day day view the photo gallery below (click “continue reading”) or visit the Westview Facebook page.

Westview Community Garden Spring Planting

Community Garden Spring Planting Photos

After a cold and long winter the night time temperatures have finally become mild enough to plant the seedlings in the community garden. And so young and old joined together to mow, till ground beds, and to start planting the first tomatoes, okra, bush beans, and peppers in the raised beds. The work is not done, but we’re excited to finally have the first set of plants in the ground!

To view photos of the planting day view the photo gallery below (click “continue reading”) or visit the Westview Facebook page.

Continue reading

Community Garden Spring Planting Day

Community Garden PreparationWith the winter behind us and night time temperatures rising it’s time to plant our veggies in the Westview Community Garden on South Gordon Street. Over the past few months neighbors have been prepping beds and growing plants from seeds in their homes, but it is time for the little seedlings to move to their permanent homes!

Come join the Westview Community Organization on their big planting day on Saturday, April 26, 2014.

This season we expect to plant:

  • Tomatoes (8 varieties!)
  • Peppers (2 varieties)
  • Peas (bush variety)
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Cucumbers
  • Okra
  • Radishes
  • Beets
  • Carrots
  • Leeks
  • Watermelons
  • Melons
  • Tomatillos
  • Beans
  • Onions
  • Collards
  • Kale
  • Swiss Chard