King Conservation District partnered with World Relief, Kent to create a community garden on an acre of parking lot donated by Hillside Church at 930 East James in Kent. With the help of hundreds of volunteers, the 12,000 square feet of parking lot asphalt was removed and new soil was brought in to fill cinder block outlined garden beds. The garden is open for public use and easily accessible by over 1,000 immigrants and refugees settled in the area by World Relief. In addition to 50 garden beds, there will be 5 rain gardens, a pollinator garden and water catchment cisterns for irrigation.
All of the garden plots are rented for the 2018 growing season and gardeners represent the following 15 countries: Afghanistan, Burma, Bhutan, Nepal, Somalia, Iraq, Kenya, Haiti, Nigeria, Chad, Ukraine, US, Palestine, Bangladesh and Barbados.
Having a place to grow fresh, healthy, culturally relevant food is the goal of the Hillside Paradise Parking Plots Community Garden.
Hillside Community Garden-Imported Soil
After de-paving nearly 12,000 square feet of asphalt from Hillside’s parking lot to create the garden beds, the gravel and native sub-soil was removed. Over 260 yards of clean 3-way garden mix of compost, sand and loam was brought in to fill the cinder block outlined beds. No soil test was performed on the new material, however, to help keep the nutrients in the soil, a cover crop seed of 95% rye cereal and 5% vetch was sown.
Cover crop offers the following benefits:
- Adds Organic Matter
- Improves Soil Structure (helps eliminate soil compaction and erosion)
- Increases Soil Fertility
- Suppresses Weeds
- Establishes Winter Habitat for Beneficial Insects
More information about Cover Crops at: http://kingcd.org/pdf/cover-crop-fact-sheet.pdf
Have you had your soil tested? KCD offers 5 FREE soil tests to qualified King County residents (visit KCD’s website for details).
Do you have a story of volunteering or growing at Hillside Community Garden? Contact Melissa.Tatro@kingcd.org to share your story.
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