Good Sam's Community Garden
If you have not had a chance to visit the church over the last few months, you might enjoy taking some time outside on the Good Samaritan grounds to see what’s growing in the Community Garden this year. Where is the garden you might wonder – not far from the main sanctuary, on the southern side across from the entrance to the young children’s meeting rooms, adjacent to Paoli Pike. You’ll find ten plots and a pollinator garden, all with well-tended soil teeming with flowers, herbs, and vegetables, most provided by one of our food security partners, the Chester County Food Bank.
Each plot is tended by individuals and/or families. You’ll see vegetables, including varieties of peppers, beans, tomatoes, sugar snap peas, collards, broccoli, cabbages, watermelon, chard, beets, okra, eggplant, scallions, lettuces, and kale. Flowers planted throughout the garden, brightly and abundantly attracting bees, butterflies, and other pollinators, include zinnias, ageratum, false sunflowers, sunflowers, Mexican sunflowers, daisies, coreopsis, coneflowers, bee balm, black-eye Susans, veronica, verbena, and yarrow. We have herbs, too!: sage, parsley, marjoram, fennel, basil, thyme, and cilantro.
One of the primary goals of the Community Garden is to share the garden’s bounty. Several of the plots are labeled “Community”, which you are welcome to pick from. These plots are also devoted to providing veggies and flowers with our other food security partner, the Good Samaritan Food Closet, serving over 350 households per year. We anticipate sharing much of the produce and flowers with the Food Closet as we did last year.
If you did not know that Good Sam had a Community Garden, the fenced site was restored in 2019, accompanied with a mission, vision, set of core values, and a new pollinator bed -- to help the garden continue to nurture the body, mind, and spirit well into the future. If you are wondering what the garden’s mission, vision, and core values look like:
Mission: To grow food, knowledge, and relationships
- To bring glory to God and blessing to ourselves and others
Vision: We want to foster a community that is committed to caring for our corner of the creation by:
- Pursuing wholesome gardening practices
- Providing opportunities for experiential learning through hands-on activities, informal classroom situations, and one-on-one mentoring
- Promoting sustainability in both land and leadership
- Sponsoring cooking instruction and shared-meal events
- Sharing from the bounty that comes from a well-tended garden, including offering hospitality to many
- Enriching the concept of stewardship as a whole-life endeavor in response to a loving God’s provision to us
- Cultivating joy in a context of beauty and providing a place of peace and safety
- Partnering with neighboring organizations and businesses
- Education: offering workshops on such topics as nutrition, cooking, and composting to groups as diverse as preschool students and their families, high school students, Food Closet guests, and other Good Sam congregants
- Sustainability: observing team-oriented practices in leadership as well as using organic and sustainable practices that reflect long-term care for land
- Stewardship: promoting respect for resources of knowledge, experience, and finances
- Hospitality: providing a place for sharing and connecting with others as well as reflecting on God’s creation
For more information about the Good Samaritan Community Garden, please contact Bess Yates.