The large group of volunteers pose with some of the boxes they had constructed at the planter build. The crew gathered at the food bank April 6 for a day of yard clean up, construction and soil filling. Photo by Kaylyn Whibbs/Sylvan Lake News

Volunteers gather to build planters for Sylvan Lake community gardens

The eight garden beds will grow fresh produce for the food bank and library’s Little Free Pantry

The beds for Sylvan Lake’s two new community gardens are set up and waiting to be planted.

There are eight garden beds total, six at the Sylvan Lake Community Food Bank and two at the Sylvan Lake Municipal Library.

The gardens will work together to provide fresh produce to the food bank and library’s Little Free Pantry.

All eight boxes were constructed by a group of volunteers at the food bank’s garden location.

The garden boxes are made of spruce, coated in linseed oil and lined with a moisture barrier to keep them in good shape for years to come.

The beds are now set in their permanent locations and filled with soil waiting to be planted.

Tammy Montague, project manager for the two new community gardens, says volunteers will be planting and maintaining the garden at the food bank throughout the summer, while the children in the library’s Summer Reading program will be planting and tending to the library’s garden as part of their programming.

The “Planting Party” for the beds at the food bank is being held on May 26.

“The Art Society also wants to beautify the locations, so they want to paint the beds and build some benches and they have lots of other plans too, but we have to discuss all that,” said Montague.

She added there is also plans for a lady bud release, as well as adding rain barrels and compost buns to the gardens.

“The rain barrels will teach about conservation and it’s a much better way of growing plants and the compost bins will provide free fertilizer,” explained Montague, adding they are also looking into growing potatoes in old tires or tomatoes with old pallets.

The project was kicked into high gear with the Community Spirit Capital Grant from the Town, but has remained virtually untouched so far.

LEARN MORE: Grant leads to two new community gardens in Sylvan Lake

Majority of the supplies were donated or provided at a discount to the committee by local businesses around Sylvan Lake.

The committee will also be looking for donations of seeds and plants in preparation for planting day.

Montague says they are hoping to have enough room in the budget to stock the shed at the food bank with tools so volunteers won’t have to bring their own, but the project still needs to purchase items like hoses to keep the gardens running.

Anyone interested in volunteering for the planting bee on May 26 is asked to reach out to Community Partners.

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The six boxes in their permanent home behind the Sylvan Lake Community Food Bank. The remaining two were transported to the Sylvan Lake Municipal Library. Photo by Kaylyn Whibbs/Sylvan Lake News

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