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Micro Enterprises in Community Gardens

  • Subject: [cg] Micro Enterprises in Community Gardens
  • From: "Cheryl Toth" <ctoth@livewisely.org>
  • Date: Fri, 18 Jun 2004 14:46:16 -0700

Dear Community Gardeners:

I am so happy to have found the ACGA and this listserv! I am on the board of
the Patagonia Community Garden, in Patagonia, Arizona - we are 18 miles
north of Mexico in a beautiful valley, 4,000 ft above sea level. We
currently have 10 gardners tending plots and are heading toward small scale,
organic vegetable production, and a greenhouse business to provide seedlings
to our gardeners and the community.

A question came up at a recent board meeting about micro-enterprises in a
community garden. Two locals want to start a small biz growing greens and
herbs. They would erect a small hoop house over 2 plots. They would pay for
the plots as any gardener would - and sell their product to the local health
food store and local restaurants/people. Currently, our gardeners are
encouraged to sell their excess to the local health food store (which LOVES
buying it) as well as at a summer farmer's market. But up until now, this
has been done by individual gardeners - not an enterprise, per se.

In general, the Board is ok with this - as long as we get a written
statement that outlines things like "they are responsible for damage that
may be done to the hoop house, " "they cannot ask another gardener to water
in their absence," etc.

Are there any models out there of community gardens that encourage micro
enterprises? And if so, could someone point me toward them so I can contact
them to find out pros and cons?

Thank you very much!

Cheryl Toth
President, Patagonia Community Garden
PO Box 567
Patagonia, AZ 85624
P: 520-394-9039
C: 520-603-4434

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