Rental program makes gardening more accessible | News, Sports, Jobs

Rental program makes gardening more accessible | News, Sports, Jobs

Ben Pifher/MDN
Dinnah Mogaka, a member of the gardening community, stands next to her family’s plots at Rainbow Gardens.

For those who are interested in gardening but do not have a place to do so, the Rainbow Gardens Association has land available for use through a rental program managed by the Minot Public Library.

Deb Sisco is the treasurer of the board that oversees the program and shared some information about how it works and what people can expect.

There are various options available to gardeners: full plots, which are 30 feet by 50 feet; half plots, which are 30 feet by 25 feet; and boxes, which are raised garden beds of various sizes.

According to Sisco, the garden plots should be undertaken by gardeners with some experience, as weed control, fertilizing and other tasks in the large plot can become a handful for novices. “Boxes are better for less experienced gardeners,” Sisco said, “because they are smaller and it is easier to manage things like weed control, fertilizing and other tasks, which can become a handful over a larger portion of land.”

There are 222 plots and 49 boxes available for use, located near the South Hill Softball Complex.

Ben Pifher/MDN
Gardening boxes and plots line a large section of land dedicated to Rainbow Gardens.

Dinnah Mogaka, a member of the gardening community who immigrated from Kenya, was working in her family’s plots after the recent rains. Her family has planted a variety of vegetables there, and she said they work it during the short growing season to give their family some fresh produce.

“Vegetables need to be eaten with meat to have a balanced diet. We should have vegetables, proteins and carbohydrates,” she said.

Through a grant given by the Minot Area Foundation earlier this year, eight new boxes were built and those were installed April 1. Funds were raised through a combination of grants, donations and plot rents.

The gardens are at your own risk, or rather the risk of your vegetation, as deer and other animals have found the gardens to be a great place to find their own dinner. Fences can deter the animals but Rainbow Gardens Association should be contacted to get permission and clarification on what can and can’t be used to protect plots. Gardeners also are reminded that they are responsible for the upkeep of the plot and should ensure it is kept tidy.

Applications for the program can be found just outside the gardens. Prices vary from $20 to $100 per growing season, depending on the type and amount of land rented. Multiple plots can be rented as well for those aspiring to grow more food. Trading and sharing is common and encouraged for those with excess crops.

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