The Walnut Hills Garden of Faith, Food, and Learning is a joint venture between our congregation and the Chin Christian Church, a congregation of Burmese refugees who live in the Clive area. The garden is now in its third year of existence.
Planning for this garden began in the spring of 2015, with our 48-plot garden opening in April of 2016. In 2017 the garden expanded to 64 plots. This year (2018) 40 plots are gardened by our Burmese neighbors and 24 are tended by our own members.
This is an allotment garden, which means each gardener is responsible for gardening his/her own 11’x13’ plot. Four small community plots were added in 2017 (herbs, rhubarb, strawberries, and flowers), and gardeners are encouraged to help themselves to the bounty of these community plots. Traditional crops of tomatoes, peppers, beans, lettuce, and squash grow abundantly, as does roselle, a favorite of the Burmese gardeners.
Not only have the Walnut Hills members been generous financial supporters of this garden, the Walnut Hills Garden of Faith, Food, and Learning has been awarded grants from Metro Waste Authority, the Iowa United Methodist Foundation, the Central District of the Iowa United Methodist Church, and the Hopkins Grove United Methodist Church. Local Boy Scout Eagle Projects at the garden have included picnic tables, benches, and a bulletin board. A permanent shade structure is this summer’s Eagle Scout project. A Little Free Library and two Adirondack chairs have also been placed in the garden and receive much use from the gardeners and their families.
For questions about the garden, call the church office at 270-9226, or e-mail Jean Swenson at J_Swenson1954@yahoo.com