Spring is definitely in the air and that means increased activity at Meetinghouse Farm. The Farm, located on Route 149, near the historic First Parish Meetinghouse, is planning its annual Volunteer Clean-Up for April 22, 23 and 24. (2004)

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The Meetinghouse Farm Management Team has completed a comprehensive landscape plan for the site. The plan was recently available for review by abutters at a coffee hour, held at Whelden Library. The plan will he implemented with the support of the Town of Barnstable's Conservation Commission and Natural Resources Department. Design for specific gardens and details of plant selection and installation will be developed during the spring and summer.

The Farm will also participate in a Spring Planting Day to be held at Country Garden in Hyannis on April 18. Volunteers will be available to discuss the goals of the Farm and offer a variety of small gardening projects for children. Information will be available on organic products that enhance the environment as well as beautify the landscape.

Last summer's Container Garden Lecture and Sale was a great success and will be held this year on Saturday, June 26. Gardeners are asked to plant container gardens around Memorial Day and donate them for the June sale. Last year's container gardens reflected the personalities and talents of individual contributors and provided instant color for many July 4 celebrations. Catherine J. Paulson, a Massachusetts Certified Horticulturist, will be available again to discuss plant selection and soil and water recommendations for container gardens.

Andy Morris, a resident of Cummaquid and member of the Barnstable County Beekeepers Association, continues to maintain two hives for the Farm. He reports that both hives made it through the winter and "the girls" are doing well.

Composting is always a "hot" topic among gardeners interested in rich soil and healthy plants. The Farm is planning to display a variety of composting options at the site this summer. AmeriCorps Cape Cod will construct the sample bins with the support of Debbie Fitton of the UMass Extension Service. Whether you've had great or mixed results with your composting, stop by the Farm this summer to see our black gold and compare composting secrets!

And don't forget to watch for the annual display of roadside flowering bulbs in April and May. They are a colorful invitation to visit Meetinghouse Farm. You might even decide to grab your rake and shovel and join us for a day of community gardening!

The writer is chairperson of the Meetinghouse Farm Management Team.

What is it?
Meetinghouse Farm is a community-based horticultural initiative with a mission of fostering community horticultural and agricultural practices.

Some Facts

  • Located off Route 149, it is part of the town's 23-acre Meetinghouse Farm Conservation Area, which includes a 3,000 sq. ft. greenhouse.
  • To support its mission, it will model and teach sustainable farming.
  • It will communicate and collaborate with local "green industries."

For more information, write to: Meetinghouse Farm, P.O. Box 330, West Barnstable, MA 02668