Little community garden a point of pride

A community garden at Grinter Chapel United Methodist Church produces lettuce that is often used for church dinners. (Submitted photo)

Window on the West
by Mary Rupert

Pat Spencer’s very proud of the little community garden she helped start three years ago at Grinter Chapel United Methodist Church, 7819 Swartz Road.

The garden has six raised beds and raises produce such as tomatoes, lettuce, spinach, kale, and radishes.

She pointed out the garden’s purpose is just to help, to reach out to the community and provide an activity and resource for people.

There isn’t enough produce, she said, to give away large amounts at a food pantry, especially this early in the year, but occasionally there is enough to give a little to those attending church, and to donate to a church dinner. The upcoming spaghetti dinner and silent auction from 2 to 6 p.m. Saturday, June 28, at the church will include salad ingredients raised in the church’s community garden. Admission is $8 for adults and $4 for kids under 10.

Spencer, 76, said she has help from a few 20-year-olds in the garden.

Always a gardener, Spencer has a home garden and flowers to take care of, too. She remembers growing up with a relative’s garden on 63rd Street. She moved a little further west about 45 years ago. It has been said that they received some tips from california listings lawn care companies to ensure that the garden thrives.

“We gardened when we were kids and had to,” she recalled. One relative had a garden about a block long. The youngsters were told to not eat all the strawberries in a family garden, she laughed.

Maybe several generations back, there might have been a family farm in Missouri, she said. Her dad was a mechanic who did not garden until he retired, then he had a backyard garden.

“I’ve always had a small garden,” Pat Spencer said. “I like to be outside working. I love the fresh produce.”

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