Programs

Folks working in the community garden

Community Garden

The Garden was first planted over 20 years ago by the Brooklin Youth Corps and the Brooklin School. Now part of the Brooklin Food Corps, the Community Garden’s teaching plots and the plots allocated to individual town residents continue to educate and to feed Brooklin. The Garden is located on property reached by the Brooklin School drive, off Bay Rd. — look for our sign at the drive’s entrance, and a short way in you’ll find a path to the Garden on the left, just before our white tool shed.

There are about 10 individual plots allocated each season, and any available plots for the following growing season will be allocated early in the year. Enjoy some company and support while growing your garden!

The other plots are used to teach Brooklin School students the skills and joy of growing food. The produce from the teaching plots is donated to the Magic Food Bus, the seasonal traveling farmstand run by Healthy Peninsula, which offers free, fresh, local produce and information about food-security resources to Peninsula residents in nine locations each week all summer long.

Lisa DePasqual is the director of the Garden, and if you’d like to visit or to inquire about a plot, please contact her at tneqra@oebbxyvasbbqpbecf.bet.


Workshops

Our workshops bring local experts together with interested community members. They are free and open to all. Check our Events Calendar for date, time, and location, which we’ll post when scheduled. We encourage you to propose ideas for workshops, including ones that you could lead (send a note to vasb@oebbxyvasbbqpbecf.bet or talk to anyone on the steering committee, which is listed at the bottom of this page).

Past sessions have included:

  • Clamming
  • Sustainable gardening techniques
  • Hot-water-bath and pressure canning, taught by the University of Maine Cooperative Extension
  • Fruit-tree pruning workshops
  • How to grow shiitake mushrooms from oak logs
  • Gardening-season extension techniques
  • Raising backyard pigs and chickens
  • Beekeeping workshops
  • Putting your garden to bed for the winter

Seed library.

Seed Library

Our Seed Library, located inside the Friend Memorial Public Library, is a free resource open to all. The Seed Library is available from March until August each year, during regular Library hours. Here you can donate or select vegetable, herb, grain, and flower seeds to grow in your garden. We have provided over 20 different seeds to the Seed Library for 2024, ranging from arugula to zucchini. You can find these seeds in the special small manila envelopes. New this year, we are starting a seed-saving project! We have selected a few varieties that are easy for first-time seed savers. Find all the pertinent info at the Seed Library. We are hoping to be able to fill this Seed Library with varieties that have growing traits specific to this region of Maine and to help make our local food system even more robust.


Crop swap in front of the Brooklin Friend Memorial Library.

Saturday Crop Swaps

Swap, drop, or just take — you’re welcome whether you have a crop to swap or not. Gardeners who have surplus to share with neighbors should bring freshly harvested and washed produce; even if you don’t have anything to donate, come to share in the bounty knowing it helps prevent waste, reduces carbon emissions, is super-healthy, and tastes delicious. Check our Events Calendar for date, time, and location, which we’ll post when scheduled.


Shovel digging in the dirt.

Tool Lending Library

We are building a library of gardening tools available to be borrowed by community members. We have a pole pruner, a broad fork, a soil corer, a post digger, and more. Email vasb@oebbxyvasbbqpbecf.bet with questions and to reserve.


Volunteers helping with the compost sale.

Compost Sale

Build healthy soil for strong plants and exceptional food! Our annual compost sale takes place each April, at the start of the growing season. Offering both pickup and delivery, it makes high-quality organic compost easily available to the community, with proceeds supporting Brooklin Food Corps events and programming. Check our Events Calendar for date, time, and location, which we’ll post when scheduled.


Seedlings.

Seedling Swap

Held annually in late May, the seedling swap offers community members the chance to swap seeds and plants. All are welcome, even if you don’t have seedlings to swap. Gardeners are on hand to answer your questions. Check our Events Calendar for date, time, and location, which we’ll post when scheduled.


Reading and talks in the community garden.

Readings & Talks

Readings and talks are offered periodically and often in collaboration with like-minded organizations, especially the Friend Memorial Public Library, which generously offers its space and grounds in addition to expertise. Check our Events Calendar for date, time, and location, which we’ll post when scheduled.

Past readings and talks have included:

  • A book club reading of All We Can Save: Truth, Courage, and Solutions for Climate Change, edited by Ayana Elizabeth Johnson and Katherine K. Wilkinson
  • A book club reading of The Seed Keeper, by Diane Wilson (with the FMPL)
  • Growing-themed story time and activities for children (with the FMPL)
  • A talk on Maine’s Right to Food constitutional amendment and Food Sovereignty ordinances
  • A talk on the 2023 Farm Bill — how it can strengthen climate-smart agricultural practices for climate health and how to get involved (with Maine Farmland Trust and Climate Action Net)
  • A book club reading of Onward and Upward in the Garden, by Katherine S. White, edited and with an introduction by E.B. White

Folks enjoying the garden party.

Annual Community Garden Party

Held in the Garden in late August, this gathering shares the summer’s bounty with a gorgeous spread of peak summer food prepared by community members, garden-themed cocktails, and games for all ages, reminding adults and children alike that fresh is best. It’s proved to be a joyous celebration of this special spot that provides beauty and nourishment for all. Check our Events Calendar for date and time, which we’ll post when scheduled.