You need to make sure that you've signed and returned your 2020 Gardener's License Agreement and Health & Safety Protcols.
These are unprecedented times and in order for us to open, the Ontario Government and Durham Public Health are requiring that we not only put Health & Safety protocols in place, but that all Gardeners agree to them.
There will be - the location will be forthcoming.
Follow the Health & Safety protocols, including sanitization and
A handwashing station will be set up. Members may also bring soapy hot water in a thermos.
If you or someone in your residence does become ill, you must inform your health professional that you are a member of St. Andrew’s Community Garden, and what days you have been there.
The Durham Region Health Department requires that members keep track of when they garden, so that if anyone in our community becomes ill, it will be easier to contact those who might be affected. If you or someone in your residence does become ill, you must inform your health professional that you are a member of St. Andrew’s Community Garden, and what days you have been there.
Lots! As per guidelines set out by the Province of Ontario, and the Durham Region Health Department, you will find that St. Andrew’s will be operating in a completely new way this year.
There will be temporary fencing placed around the garden, so that we can limit when we are open, as well as how many people can be in the garden at the same time. Physical distancing will be easier to maintain, as odd numbered plot holders will only be permitted to garden on odd numbered days, and even numbered plot holders will only be permitted to garden on even numbered days.
Access to the garden will be limited to plot holders only, visitors will not be allowed to visit at this time. A handwashing & sanitization station will be set up at the entrance. Members will have to bring their own tools and watering cans at this time, so that any cross-contamination can be kept to a minimum. Members are encouraged to wear masks & gloves, and volunteers will be required to wear them at all times. There are a lot of changes, but we’re here to help you through it!
If you have an even numbered plot, you may come on even numbered days. If you have an odd numbered plot, you may visit on odd numbered days.
There is no limit, at this time, to how often you can come visit the Garden.
There are 20 people allowed in the Garden at any time. This includes volunteers, the Gatekeeper, etc. The Gatekeeper will let you know if there are too many people in the Garden for you to enter.
We would recommend that you wait in your vehicle until the Garden has fewer visitors. If you walked over, please line up outside the Garden, spacing yourself at least 2 metres, or 6.5 feet, apart.
Yes, you need to check in with the Gatekeeper, let him/her know which plot is yours, and you are required to keep track of what days each week you come to the garden, as well as who comes with you. The Durham Region Health Department requires that members keep track of when they garden, so that if anyone in our community becomes ill, it will be easier to contact those who might be affected. If you or someone in your residence does become ill, you must inform your health professional that you are a member of St. Andrew’s Community Garden, and what days you have been there.
The Gatekeeper's role is to check people into the garden and monitor it, and to address any Health & Safety protocol violations.
The Gatekeeper is authorized to ask people to leave the Garden if they are not following the Health & Safety protocols, and to take steps to ensure that the Health & Safety protocols are being kept.
Only two members per household may visit the Garden at any one time.
While we ask that you come by yourself if you can, we understand that sometimes that’s not entirely possible. If you need to bring children, they must either be able to follow the rules and remain at your plot (no running around), or they must remain seated in a stroller. Pets are strictly forbidden, other than service animals.
From Monday to Friday, the Garden will be open from 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. and again from 2:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
On Saturdays, Sundays & statutory holidays, the Garden will be open from 10:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
If you see a gardener who you think looks unwell, we ask that you first ask them how they are feeling. Please don’t assume that someone is sick simply because of how they look; working hard in the garden can make someone appear flushed, they may also be short of breath. Take a walk over, and while still maintaining physical distancing, ask them a few questions: you look like you’re working really hard, are you feeling okay? Do you need a hand with anything? Have you got a water bottle to keep hydrated?
If you’re still concerned after speaking with the gardener, then we ask that you send us an email so that we can inquire with the gardener as to their well-being. The Durham Region Health Department also asks that if you think that someone is displaying the warning signs of COVID-19, that you make an inquiry with a health professional.
We are sorry - normally we love visitors! However, the Garden is open only to our members who have signed their Garden License Agreement and the Health & Safety Protocols.
The Town of Ajax is going to open seven spots for our gardeners - you may park there.
I don't feel comfortable coming to the garden this year, or have been advised by my healthcare professional to limit my time outside the home. I don't want to lose my plot. What do I do?
We understand your concern, and we want to assure you that none of our members will lose their plot due to the COVID-19 pandemic. If you’re unsure about participating in the garden this year, rest assured that your plot will be saved for you for next year. In fact, we’ve put together a pretty exciting program for members just like you, people who want to garden, but are nervous about gardening this year, called the Community Share Program. (Check out the FAQ section on that below).
I’ve been out of work due to the pandemic, and I can’t afford to buy my own tools. How am I supposed to garden?
If you aren’t able to purchase your own tools, please don’t hesitate to send us an email. We understand that many members of our community have been affected by the pandemic, and we are here to help. Tool bursaries will be available to those who need; our goal is for all of our gardeners to be able to garden this year.
Access to the sheds will be limited to allow gardeners to borrow long-handled tools. The exact schedule as to when that will be available is still being confirmed.
To comply with sanitization requirements, clean tools will be picked up from the south side of the East shed. Dirty tools will be dropped off on the north side of the Committee shed.
They will be filled twice per week. Now, more than ever, it's important that we do not overwater and really conserve our water so it will be available to everyone.
The water from the water barrel should not be used for cleaning your tools off.
As in normal years, all Gardeners are responsible for maintaining their plots, keeping them neat and keeping the north side of the walkway clear and weed-free.
Unfortunately, all St. Andrew’s social events have been cancelled for this year, though we are still hoping to host our 2020 AGM in the fall. We can maintain physical distancing and still have conversations with our fellow gardeners, and for those who wish our Facebook page is active. Our newsletters will be coming out soon, and we gladly accept submissions from our members – another great way to keep in touch!
If there is enough interest, online tutorials or workshops can be arranged throughout the season. We are home to a wide variety of experts, all very willing to share their knowledge with their fellow gardeners. If there’s something in particular that you’d like to learn about, let us know and we’ll try to figure something out!
We're sorry - no visitors to this Garden, as long as the COVID-19 restrictions are in place. We look forward to having you visit once this is all over!
The Committee is still figuring out the details as to how the general maintenance of the Garden will be maintained.
Yes - you will still need to contribute 6 hours during the season.
An initial email has gone out requesting volunteers and Melissa, our volunteer coordinator, will be in touch throughout the season with opportunities to contribute.
We are going to need a variety of volunteers throughout the year, including:
- Food Bank volunteers (for planting, maintaining, harvesting and delivering)
- Community Share Program volunteers (for planting, maintaining, harvesting and delivering)
- Gatekeepers (to check people into the Garden and monitor the Garden during open hours)
- Filling Water Barrels
- Technical Support (i.e. helping with the website, our social media, etc.)
- and more!
Our volunteer coordinator, Melissa, will be in touch throughout the season with volunteer opportunities.
We understand that some people will not want to garden this year. They will not lose their plots, they will just be reallocated into our Community Share Program.
Volunteers will be taking care of those plots, and CSA-type boxes will be provided to those members weekly as the season progresses (once harvest-time begins). We will ask that you help us out by contributing either plants or seeds, the same that you would have purchased anyway, and we’ll take care of the rest! St. Andrew’s Community Garden is firmly committed to helping our community, and our members are at the core of that community. Please let us know if you’d like to participate in this program as soon as you can; the sooner we get all of our plots planted, the quicker we get to harvest!
We are still working out the details but email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to contribute towards the plants or seedlings that we will be planting.
It is for members who have plots and will not be gardening in them this year due to COVID-19.
However, we will continue our Food Bank program and continue sharing with our local charities to feed those in need in Ajax.