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Fall 2022 Workshops at the Community Farm

This fall we will host several workshops at the GFN Community Farm at 140 Meadow Street in Florence. Details below:

Pollinator Health and Diversity in the Garden

September 15, 5:30 – 7pm

Join us for an interactive workshop about pollinator health and diversity in your garden with UMass Extension and the Western Massachusetts Master Gardeners.

We will start with a tour of the Pollinator Garden managed by members of the Western Mass Master Gardener Association.

UMass Extension Educator Hannah Whitehead will talk about native bee diversity, and demonstrate a common bee monitoring protocol. Participants will have a chance to practice this technique in different sections of the GFN Community Garden, and we will compare our findings.

Sign up here- Pollinator Health

Effective Methods for Composting in Small Spaces

October 11, 3:30 – 6 pm

Hosted by Grow Food Northampton and American Farmland Trust 

Join us to learn about composting in small spaces using a method that  ‘cooks’ down weeds and garden refuse in about 3 weeks, in a hands-on session. We will show you how to build a small, fast-acting compost pile and discuss the composting process, what to put in the pile, and how to manage and use this great resource in the garden or farm.

Before the compost demonstration, we will take a tour of the farming operations and community gardens at the Grow Food Northampton Organic Community Farm and Song Sparrow Farm. Following the demonstration, Jack and Caro from AFT will talk briefly about resources to get your soil tested, both for nutrients and for contaminants you should watch out for (like heavy metals), and what to ask your compost supplier if you do need to purchase compost for your site. They will bring a soil screener that can test samples for heavy metals and will provide on-site screening as time allows. Any samples that can’t be screened at the event will be collected and results returned to the participant within 3 weeks.

Family Garden Visit

TWO TIMES! Thursday, October 13, 2022, 9:30 am and 5:00 pm

Hosted by the Northampton Public Schools’ Early Childhood Center and Grow Food Northampton

Families of all ages are invited to join the NPS Early Childhood Center and Grow Food Northampton for a sensory tour of the Community Garden and a chance to harvest sunflower seeds to grow at home! Meet us at the front of the garden to the left once you enter the driveway. 

Link to sign up for this and several other workshops presented by the Northampton Public Schools’ Early Childhood Center. 

This event is FREE.


Living History in the Garden: Lydia Maria Child and Sugar Beets

Sat, October 15, 2022, 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Hosted by Grow Food Northampton and David Ruggles Center 

Join Grow Food Northampton and David Ruggles Center for a hands-on outdoor workshop to learn about the abolitionist history of sugar beets in Florence in the 1800’s and our Living History garden where we are growing sugar beets, broomcorn and flax.

Historian Tom Goldscheider will present on Lydia Maria Child, David Child and the abolitionists of the 1800s who lived and farmed on this land in Florence and used agriculture as a means of resisting injustice in their time. We will do a demonstration of processing sugar beets into sugar, and discuss the historical context.

Sign up here – Sugar Beets

This event is FREE in honor of celebrating our 10 year anniversary of the community garden.

For all workshops:

Space is limited, registration required.

If an event isn’t free, the base price for tickets is $10 per workshop.

We encourage BIPOC participants, those experiencing economic hardship, and those from systemically marginalized communities to opt for a fee that works for you.

And we encourage those who wish to help GFN increase our support for low income and BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) gardeners to pay more than the base fee. Please opt for a fee that works for you and that fairly represents your ability to support our work.

If you want to pay $0, please email and we will register you.

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