Grow Your Own Food at The Farm at St. Joe’s
Have you always wanted to try your hand at growing a vegetable garden? Are you looking for a place close to work with comradery and advice about how to start gardening? Or, maybe you’re an expert gardener, but your yard is too shady? Then join with fellow SJMHS Ann Arbor staff at the Staff Community Garden at The Farm at St. Joe’s!
SJMHS Ann Arbor employees will be able to sign-up for a garden plot on a first come, first served basis this spring.
For a fee to cover the use of the plot for the summer, SJMHS staff gardeners will get a composted, tilled plot in a communal, fenced-in area with sustainable paths and access to water. There is a workday to add the compost– see below. The garden is located outside, near the hoop houses at The Farm at St. Joe’s.
Standard plot: 10′ x 12′ The cost is $15 plus a refundable deposit of $25 (total $40).
Large plot: 10′ x 15′ The cost is $25 plus a refundable deposit of $35 (total $60). We ask that experienced gardeners or groups of people who are committed to maintaining their plot sign-up for this size.
Signing up: You may sign-up as an individual or as a group. However, when registering, we ask that one person registers and pays for the plot.
- Sign-up and pay the fee for the standard plot or the large plot by completing a form and then paying at the Wed Farmer’s Market (starts at 11:00am in the main lobby of the main entrance at SJMHS) starting Wed. 4/12. There are a limited number of plots.
- One plot per person.
- Note: Gardeners must be SJMHS employees at the time of signing-up.
- Refunds of the deposit will be provided to gardeners that clean-out their plot in the Fall.
Deposit: Checks for the deposit should be made out to “St. Joseph Mercy Hospital” and preferably dated for November.
The deposit and a signed Employee Community Garden Contract (see below) will be collected at 1) orientation for gardeners new to the Staff Community Garden or 2) through the Garden Coordinator, for those who are returning to the Garden.
Orientation to the Staff Garden (required for gardeners new to the Farm): To participate you must attend one of the orientation dates. Orientation will last 30-45 min and will include a tour of the Farm, a review of the governing rules, and a chance to meet Amanda and Rozelle. Bring a deposit. Orientation will be scheduled at the Farm (5557 McAuley Dr.), Tuesday April 18th at 4pm. After you sign-up for a garden plot, information will be send to you regarding the orientation.
Opening: This depends on the weather and our ability to prep the soil. Dates typically range from the last week of April to mid-May.
Closing: Gardens must be cleaned up by Nov 1st.
Here is the Employee Community Garden Contract:
For more information or if you have questions please contact the Community Garden Coordinator: Rozelle Copeland (Rozelle.Copeland@stjoeshealth.org)
Community Staff Garden Workday: Date TBD- Thurs at 4pm in April or early May. This workday will be to place a layer of compost over the garden and till it into the soil. This will prepare the beds for planting and help grow strong, big plants.
Intro to Gardening Training (optional): Date TBD. This class is for the those new to gardening who are looking for information on how to get started. Rozelle Copeland, the Garden Coordinator, will cover a variety of topics, including: heirloom vs. hybrid, what to expect, figuring out what and how much to plant, how to plant, and tips for tomatoes.
Building the SJMHS Staff Community Garden
In the Spring of 2016 on sunny Saturday afternoon a few of the people who signed-up for a plot, a volunteer and Amanda, the Farmer, gathered to helped build the Staff Community Garden. Later, after the fence was put in and paths were laid down, staff got started on planting.
Staff Community Garden in the Winter
Here is what the garden looked like in March 2017. That is the Reichert Health Center Building in the background.