MILLEDGEVILLE — Area volunteers and residents are helping members of the Milledgeville Community Garden Association (MCGA) make progress at the community garden located at the Collins P. Lee Center in the Harrisburg neighborhood.
“All of this is so exciting,” said Debbie Harshbarger, MCGA treasurer and outreach chair. “The Collins P. Lee Center is being rented out for private affairs and is being used by the Baldwin County Parks and Recreation Department for its summer camp. The center is really becoming a hub for activity for the community.”
The project includes a plan to place a fruit orchard, pavilion and nearly a quarter of a mile-long edible walking trail around the maintained property, which was a former elementary school with the kitchen and cafeteria area currently remaining. The fenced community garden includes 22 raised garden beds, consuming a space of about 50 by 100 feet.
“Southside Equipment came out with a tractor and auger and they dug 27 post holes for us to install a deer fence; that was huge assistance in moving this project forward and securing the garden from wildlife. First United Methodist Men contributed toward the cost of the fence and they hope other churches will help support the project too,” Harshbarger said. “All of the beds are complete and gardeners are already putting in plants donated by Lockerly Arboretum, including tomatoes, peppers and herbs. We’re now waiting to build a permanent, durable main entrance with a swinging gate for the garden. With the pavilion project pending, we hope to have that all underway before fall.”
Participants in First United Methodist Church’s 16th annual River of Life will begin paving the walking trail in mid-July.
“Baldwin County is grading the property ahead of time which is tremendous assist in terms of labor to provide that,” Harshbarger said. “This will make for a really smooth and professional job.”