Find inner ‘peas’ at the garden

Sep 13, 2023

Tucked away behind a tall row of shrubbery on Tihonet Road lies a small community of gardeners.

In the garden, 50 sectioned off plots grow tall stalks of plump tomatoes, large squash ready for harvesting, thriving patches of kale and spearmint as well as dozens of multicolored flowers.

The Community Garden is open to Wareham residents and residents from neighboring towns, as well as school groups and other community organizations such as the Boy Scouts.

Wareham’s Laurie Christiana and Kathy Williams, along with their dog Yuki Williams Christiana, own a double plot in the garden. 

The land on which the garden sits is owned by the A. D. Makepeace Company. The company’s workers once used the garden and could pick produce.

The gardens are now managed by a committee, though A.D. Makepeace supplies water to the plots. 

On Tuesday, Sept. 12 Christiana, Williams and Yuki stopped by the garden on Tuesday, Sept. 12 to plant some garlic.

Christiana said the garlic will sprout in the fall and will be ready for harvesting next spring.

She said they have owned their plot for three years and have previously had plots in other towns. 

“There's nothing like fresh vegetables,” Christiana said.

“We don't have a lot of land now where we live,” Williams said. “We actually tried to garden at home, but there were too many squirrels and chipmunks.”

Williams and Christiana agreed the benefits of the Community Garden also include the social aspect as well as a form of selfcare.

“I work out problems,” Christiana said. “You don't even know something's bothering you and weeding just takes care of it.”

Wareham’s Jim Graham has owned a plot in the garden for six seasons.

Currently, Graham is growing tomatoes, bok choy, non-heading Chinese cabbage, endive, escarole, lettuce and herbs.

Graham said the garden has been “terrific.”

“I enjoy it and eat well,” he added.

He said, “It's a tremendous resource, and people here are very nice.”

Marion’s Ann Stor and her husband own a double plot and have been at the garden for 3 years.

“It’s a beautiful, peaceful place,” Stor said.

She said although she’s still new to gardening, “one of the really nice things about it is there's people like Jim [Graham] — who's like a real expert — and other people here who are very knowledgeable and everybody's very friendly and they love to share.”

One of the ways the community shares their tips is through their potlucks. There, gardeners can discuss what plants are doing well in the season, get help with their gardens and share their harvests.

Stor said some members of the community have skills in preserving the fruits and vegetables such as through freezing, drying, pickling and cooking. 

She added the gardeners are always happy to share excess with friends, family and food pantries. 

However, rules are in place to ensure no one is harvesting from anyone's plot without permission.

Stor said there are also a few rules about fertilizers and pesticides to keep all the plants organic.

Stor was visiting the garden on Friday, Sept. 8 to water her plants and harvest some ripe tomatoes.

“It's a really nice place to come with nice people to spend restful time with,” she said.

For more information about the community garden, search for “Wareham Community Garden” on Facebook.