Meet two of the new site leaders that help coordinate the garden sites and grow our community.
Milton, Riverside Site Leader
Milton relocated to Burlington to feel more grounded, and according to him, “Growing food and flowers is one way in which I’m striving for that grounding”. He said that he joined BACG a few years ago because he lives right around the corner and thought instead of creating a garden in his own back yard, that it would be better to be a part of the local community.
After being a gardener for a few years, when the opportunity arose, Milton stepped up to the challenge of being the Site Leader (on top of having a very demanding job in the nursing field). And let’s just say that the Riverside garden, as well as BACG, is lucky to have him! Milton has taken initiative at the garden and takes care of things on his own without any hesitation. He was there in full force for Day in the Dirt leading the troops in all of the tasks that needed to be done, he helped Dylan, Elena, and Meghan with a pollinator planting project, he mows the garden, and does countless other jobs around the garden. And he does it all with a smile!
Milton’s got big plans for the remainder of the season. He’s hoping to turn the northeast embankment behind the garden into a perennial “terraced nook in the woods”. He has already cleared out all of the weeds and is working with Parks & Rec to get plants for the area. Thanks to Milton, the Riverside garden is looking better than ever!
Kathryn, Medical Center Site Leader
Kathryn is one of the Site Leaders at the Medical Center garden! She began gardening when she, “stumbled over a community garden in the park across the street from my complex”. When she moved to Burlington three years ago, she found out about BACG through a friend and has been a part of the program ever since. She has always, “loved digging in the dirt and being able to grow my own food” and she, really enjoys cooking and like being able to grow so much of what she uses in the kitchen. Kathryn has used BACG to connect with the surrounding Burlington community! She has, “enjoyed getting to meet people from many different walks of life through the garden” and has “met many people that I wouldn’t have otherwise”.
After being a gardener in the program for a few years, when there was an opening to be a Site Leader Kathryn decided to increase her level of commitment to the garden. It has given her a chance to get to know all of the gardeners at the site. She has done an incredible job of keeping the garden up and running and making sure all of the gardeners are getting what they need to have a successful growing season! It isn’t easy being thrown into a leadership position, but she did it beautifully.
She and her co-site leader were tasked with the coordination of raised community beds this season, and they have done a magnificent job with them. Kathryn explained that they have used them, “for pollinators and for food to help fight food insecurity in our community” and that, “the flowers have been a great visual addition to our garden and we’ve donated over 140lbs of food so far this summer”.
One of her big goals for creating community within the garden was to organize a potluck, and she and her co-site leader made it happen! It can be difficult to coordinate everyone’s schedules and create a time and space for everyone to gather together, but it is an exciting thing when it happens. She’s hoping to have another one next year!