RE: [squirrel_garden:626] Plot assignments

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Patricia McGrath

Apr 9, 2013, 11:01:42 AM4/9/13
to Julia Hallman,, Letourneau, Jennifer (
Hi Julie,

Unfortunately, we have been unable to reach Lauren Farina, prior coordinator. I have agreed to volunteer to coordinate this year (with help from YOU and other gardeners). We are working with Jennifer Letourneau, City of Cambridge, to update the assignment and waiting lists; looks like we will be a bit late this year. I will find out contact information for Works in case there are water issues like we experienced in the past-let me know input on other potential issues.

Your plot will turn over this year. There appears (from old lists I got last year) to be a long list of gardeners waiting for plots. In addition, very few plots appear to be at the 4 year mark (5 of 34), so little turnover this year. As well, some who were assigned shared plots last year should receive full plots this year or next (several). If there is an opportunity for sharing, we will let you know. Looks like~ 10 plots will turn over at the end of 2013 season.

If you are interested in getting a new assignment in the future, I believe the system is for you to fill out a new application and send to the City. After we review the current lists, we can let everyone know potential wait time. I know I waited at least 3 years!

If you could all do us a favor and email me your full contact information, we can update original lists. Also, if you know of other Cantabridgeans who think they are on the waiting list, please have them contact me, so we can cross check.

I will not be available this weekend to assist with the clean-up, but hope we can plan some activities later April/May-

1) anyone interested in seed swap? I buy packs, but usually too many for one year. FYI, Ocean State Job Lot in Watertown has Burpee seed packs 40% off.
2) anyone without transportation who would like soil bags? HD or Rickys? I may be able to drop off at SG.

I am sure we all have itchy planting fingers with this great weather. I cannot wait for a fresh tomato!

Call me with any questions or input.

Patricia McGrath

39 Inman Street


-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf Of Julia Hallman
Sent: Tuesday, April 09, 2013 10:12 AM
Subject: [squirrel_garden:626] Plot assignments

Hi gardeners!

Have the plot assignments gone out this year? Last year was my 3rd year so I know that I might not have my plot anymore :( but I wanted to make sure! My plot is/was plot 8 right by the compost (with the raised beds).

Thanks everyone!!


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Letourneau, Jennifer

Apr 9, 2013, 1:30:52 PM4/9/13
to Tim Kiely, Patricia McGrath, Julia Hallman,

The policy as instituted by Squirrel Brand is the approved City of Cambridge Policy for all new gardens on City land.  The turn-over at Squirrel is exactly the turn-over needed in the densely populated area.  Thank you for adhering to the policy.



Jennifer K. Letourneau, Director

Cambridge Conservation Commission

344 Broadway, 3rd Floor

Cambridge, MA 02139


phone: 617.349.4680

fax: 617.349.4633




From: Tim Kiely []
Sent: Tuesday, April 09, 2013 12:48 PM
To: Patricia McGrath
Cc: Julia Hallman;; Letourneau, Jennifer
Subject: Re: [squirrel_garden:626] Plot assignments


Hi all,

I just wanted to let everyone know that the policy of kicking gardeners out after 3 years is not the standard practice.

Many of the community gardens in Cambridge do not do this, but come up with innovative ways to welcome new gardeners.

Last year, Lauren and I were trying to organize a meeting to come up with a policy for Squirrel Brand.  Unfortunately that did not happen.


Just wanted to pass that along and offer my hope that you can find a way to build community by welcoming new, committed gardeners without destroying community by kicking people out.


Letourneau, Jennifer

Apr 10, 2013, 8:43:38 AM4/10/13
to Tim Kiely, Patricia McGrath, Julia Hallman,

When the land that Squirrel Brand is located was purchased by the City over 10 years ago, the City of Cambridge Community Garden Policy was written.  I explained to Dan as well as to Lauren that any changes to the policy needs to be approved by the City.  Given the density of the area and large waitlist, the policy will not be altered as to tenure in the garden.


Thank you!




From: Tim Kiely []
Sent: Tuesday, April 09, 2013 5:53 PM
To: Letourneau, Jennifer
Cc: Patricia McGrath; Julia Hallman;
Subject: Re: [squirrel_garden:626] Plot assignments



What "policy as instituted by Squirrel Brand" are you referring to?

I have been a member of the community for 5 years and have discussed plot assignment policy with Dan, the previous garden coordinator, with Lauren, the current coordinator, and with many community members.  The consensus has always been to try to find a way to manage such a scarce resource fairly - to not kick out community members and to find a way to bring new gardeners into the community.


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