Biking at the Garden
by Art Larson
Garden Steering Committee Member
Hi Folks. I’m Art Larson. I’ve got a plot at both Grow Food Northampton Organic Community Garden and at the Northampton Community Garden. I live in Hadley and biking is my primary mode of transportation by choice. Both community gardens are bike-friendly, especially the Grow Food Northampton Garden. There are lots of tools available in the shed and a nice bike rack. I occasionally will bring one or two of my favorite hand tools (sickle, sharpening stones), but everything else I need is in the shed.
The bike path provides a pleasant and safe ride from Hadley and drops me off in the center of Florence. I don’t need to go to the garden every day to water, although it is nice just to visit. The soil at the garden is very similar to the soil in Hadley and retains moisture well. I mulch my plants heavily and at present I am only watering newly planted seeds. I haven’t watered established plants since July 1st. I note that the fields planted in Hadley are not watered daily by farmers’ with hoses! The plants are not even mulched and they seem to be doing fine. Plants become more deeply rooted and follow the water down when watered infrequently.I encourage more folks to ride their bikes or walk to the Garden, and to favor heavy mulching over heavy watering. It’s a beautiful ride, water is a beautiful resource, and both car parking and water are in precious supply at the Garden!