The Last Post from the Brighton Community Garden


Now that December is here, this post about wrapping things up in my little spot in the Brighton Community Garden is way overdue. But I must write this final post as a conclusion to the unforgettable experience it has been digging, weeding, watering and reaping alongside my fellow Brighton  neighbors.

My neighbors and I have shared watering and weeding responsibilities through a hot dry summer. Our tomato patches bursting with more than one family could possibly consume, we’ve traded beefsteaks for exotic varieties such as the green-striped zebra or tiny yellow jelly bean.

Sue Gardiner-Smith, the manager of the garden, made sure that we kept up with our commitments to clear the common paths of weeds and not let our own plots get too overgrown (that meant taming my wild pumpkin vines!) In return, she gave me carte blanche to take as much Swiss Chard as I could cut from her never-ending crop of the green leafy stuff.

My garden experience ended on Veteran’s Day. The kids had the day off. First, we paid a visit to the brand new Veteran’s Memorial sculpture, just next door to the garden:

The talons and feathered legs of the Eagle sculpture at the new Brighton Veteran's Memorial.

The talons and feathered legs of the Eagle sculpture at the new Brighton Veteran’s Memorial.

Then, we got to work. We pulled out the last of the vegetation, blackened and dead as a result of a hard killing frost that descended over Rochester a night or two before:

DSCN1964

We pulled up the fencing and the poles ( the boys had to have a stick fight with them atop the compost heap, of course):

DSCN1966

Harvested our last pumpkins and carrots, and finally, chopped down the remains of that sunflower that grew to be about 10 feet tall.

DSCN1965

Putting this garden to bed would be the first of many lasts for me in Rochester.

Like clearing out this garden, I’m literally pulling up my roots again. Rochester may not be my hometown, but it is for my kids.

When I cleared the last weeds with my kids, I  knew I would never garden here again.

In the end, the plot looked just as it did back in March. You would never knew how it was covered with tomato, bean, pumpkin and flowers just weeks before.

In the end, the plot looked just as it did back in March. You would never knew how it was covered with tomato, bean, pumpkin and flowers just weeks before.

I would not be putting down my $25 deposit to renew my lease on this 10’x10′ piece of land that gave me so much delight. Next spring,  this plot will be cared by someone else.

Next spring, I’ll be well on my way to finding our next home, and hopefully our next garden somewhere in Michigan.

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About stacylynngittleman

I have been a public relations professional and reporter -- and always thought I would live in the New York Metro area - before my husband took a job in Rochester, New York. Most in Metro New York can't find Rochester on a map,and neither could I before we moved. I am now a columnist and a freelance writer for Rochester's only daily newspaper, the Democrat & Chronicle. I also am passionate about gardening, fitness and most of all, Jewish education and Israel Advocacy. Here's my perspective on Western New York living - the good, the bad, and the snowy.

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