Watertown Community Gardens

Grove Street Community Garden (GSCG)

The Grove Street Community Garden 

 (across from Mount Auburn Cemetery at 165 Grove Street) returns again for the 2021 growing season with open plots. 

Grove Street Community Garden Rules

Written by the GSCG steering committee in collaboration with Watertown Community Gardens (WCG) 

The Grove Street Community Garden (“GSCG”) was organized in the winter and spring of 2012. The land on which the garden is located belongs to Mt. Auburn Cemetery (“MAC”). Fees are collected from all gardeners to support Watertown Community Gardens (“WCG”), our parent organization. A steering committee (“SC”) has been organized to oversee the GSCG.

In registering for a garden plot you agree to the following rules:

  1. The GSCG will exist until January 2021 after which time WCG and all community gardeners will need to vacate the garden plots. Each year you must re-apply for a Plot.
  2. This is an organic garden. Non-organic herbicides, pesticides and fertilizers are prohibited. Organic fertilizers may be used in compliance with manufacturers’ instructions and shall not be left on-site or unattended at any time. Garden operations must be conducted safely. Hand tools must be stored in the shed or off site. The operation of power tools is prohibited at the GSCG.
  3. STEALING (that is, picking other peoples vegetables, fruits, herbs, and other plants) is strictly prohibited. Please respect your neighbor’s property. Ask before you use other gardener’s tools or hoses, and put them back where you found them. Stealing is unconscionable.
  4. Dogs on leash are welcome at the garden and their scent may help deter pests.
  5. Please bring your children to the garden. It is a wonderful experience for them to see things growing. Our gardening future depends on the little ones. Children are free to play in the children’s garden and digging area. Please do not allow your child to wonder beyond the garden area to where MAC maintains heavy machinery or into the bio-swale, which may fill up with water and pose a drowning hazard.
  6. You may grow any annual vegetables or flowers, except plants over 4-5' in height are prohibited because they shade other gardeners' plots.
  7. Planting invasive perennials is prohibited. If you are not sure what you are planting, please consult a member of the steering committee (SC). 
  8. The garden will be locked from sundown to sunrise. The combination to the gate lock will be shared with all gardeners at the beginning of the garden season, and may change each year. The site is patrolled periodically by the Mount Auburn Cemetery Staff, but it is the responsibility of ALL gardeners to ensure gate is locked when leaving the garden. 
  9. Water is a valuable resource which should not be wasted. Our ability to lease this land from Mt. Auburn Cemetery is dependent on our ability to NOT WASTE water. Please turn off the water immediately after you finish using it. Gardeners must keep hoses off other peoples’ plots and roll up the hoses after use. We strongly suggest that you not water your plants during the heat of the day, best to water in the early morning. You may only water by hand, hose, or rain barrel. Sprinklers are NOT allowed.
  10. Only one community garden plot per household is permitted. You may only garden in the plot assigned to your family. Plots sizes may not be enlarged. Each plot will have clearly defined edges that are not to be moved. You must have your plot care and planting underway by June 15 or you forfeit your plot for the year. 
  11. You must keep your garden weeded. Weeding responsibilities extend to the walkways around your plot. Weed seeds from your garden become the weeds in your neighbor's garden. If you don’t weed, your plot will be considered abandoned even if it is edged and planted. You will be allowed to use landscape fabric sometimes called “weed block” in your plot. This fabric does contain some of the weeding.
  12. Watertown Community Gardens may provide compost bins for the community gardens. Please follow the guidelines for putting things in the compost bins. Not all weeds and plant materials belong in the compost. If you’re not sure, ASK.
  13. Some pests (bugs, fungi, etc.) can spread quickly. If you are notified that you have pests or disease in your garden, you may need to remove the infested plants to avoid spread in the garden, or allow them to be removed if you are not able. Do not compost diseased plants. Please put them in your trash. Failure to remove and dispose of pests or diseased plants in your plot may lead to loss of your plot at the discretion of the Steering Committee.
  14. No trash pick up or recycling collection is offered by the town for the garden. Please remove all of your trash and recycling.
  15. Supports/Decorations for your Plot. You may use tomato cages, trellis, poles (bamboo, wooden, metal) to support your plants. Just remember to be courteous to your neighbor, i.e., a 20 foot trellis to grow green beans may be considered not to be too courteous.
  16. A Garden Coordinator may be appointed for the season each year by the Steering Committee, and would get a free plot. A coordinator must be a community gardener in the garden for which s/he is the coordinator. Coordinators would assist the garden captains in such tasks as: orient new gardeners to operating procedure, coordinate mulch, composting activities and clean-up days, answer questions, etc.
  17. If ripe produce is not harvested, the Garden Coordinator will remind the gardener to harvest. If it still remains one week later, the Steering Committee reserves the right to harvest such produce and distribute to the food pantry.
  18. If you anticipate being gone from the garden for an extended period (two weeks or longer) you must let the garden coordinator or a member of the Steering Committee know, and arrange for your garden to be tended in your absence.
  19. All gardeners must participate in at least 3 Workdays each growing season or complete an equivilent work project approved by the garden captains.
  20. At the end of the season, all gardens must be prepared for winter. Cover crops, cold frames and other season extending apparatus are allowed. If you don’t show up for work days you may forfeit your plot for next year, at the discretion of the Steering Committee.
  21. Please garden safely: WCG and the GSCG are not responsible for personal injury or theft of belongings.
  22. Parking for GSCG – No one is allowed to park in the Garden. There is parking at Filippello Park and along the side of Coolidge Hill Avenue also. WCG and GSCG will not be responsible for any parking tickets.
  23. In order to combat foraging animals, each garden plot will be fenced in accordance with plans developed by the steering committee. Maintenance of the fence will be the responsibility of each gardener. Please do not alter the fence in any way.
  24. Grove Street Garden Captains and Steering Committee work hard to maintain a positive gardening experience. Please contact any of these individuals for assistance.

Grove Street Steering Committee

 Christine Pasterczyk*    
 Darya Mattes*    
 Anne Donnelly    
 Linda Palange
 Pam Phillips    

 Betty Gordon


*denotes garden captain

Watertown Community Gardens is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

P.O. Box 1041, Watertown, MA 02471

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