When was the last time you enjoyed fresh vegetables, having only moments before pulled them from the earth with your own hands? Today, it’s a pleasure that’s become more and more rare. But it’s one that the Mosaic Community Garden hopes to rectify. David Jackson, president of the organization’s board of trustees, shared his own personal account with a young boy enjoying his first taste of a radish. “We warned him that radishes are a little hot, so he took a small bite,” said Jackson. “When I asked him if he liked it, he took a bigger bite and said, ‘Yes!’”
During a recent growing season, a host of fresh foods was harvested at the community garden located in downtown Pottstown. What was once a vacant lot is now a thriving patch of land for tomatoes, cucumbers, pumpkins, watermelons, squash, carrots, Swiss chard, kale and peppers. The gardens are divided into plots that measure either 3.5 feet x 4 feet or 4 feet by 10 feet. At the height of the season, there were 33 occupied plots, with room for more.
It’s hard to pin down a generic definition of who is using the garden, as a diverse swath of the community enjoys its benefits—from elementary school classes to families and local businesses. Many share one similarity: They simply don’t have the luxury of land for their own gardens. Others, especially kids, learn valuable lessons through school programs. One, for example, features a professional bird watcher who explains how to use binoculars and identify species of birds.
All benefit from the sense of camaraderie and support, as the group exchanges best practices on growing techniques. While the garden may remain dormant through the winter months, look for its rebirth every spring. There are a limited number of plots available, so interested community members are encouraged to download the application and request their space today (a small fee is included).