Community garden plots up for grabs

Waiting list is open for people wanting to reserve spaces

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Residents who want to test out their green thumb have the chance to reserve a plot in one of the Highlands Ranch Metro District's three community gardens now that the waiting list is open.

The gardens — at Cheese Ranch Historic and Natural Area, Foothills Park and Dad Clark Park — are good for growing many things like peppers, tomatoes, zucchinis, potatoes and squash, program coordinator Kathleen Pileggi said.

There are about 100 plots available.

“We're pretty much full most years,” she said.

While preference is given to returning gardeners, there are lots of first-timers as well, she said. Organizations and schools can sign up, though most gardeners are individuals or families.

“People really, really enjoy it,” she said. “It gives them a sense of community. They get to know the other gardeners in their plots …They help water each other's plots while they're gone.”

Some people grow their produce exclusively to donate it, she said.

The 10-by-20-foot plots cost $50 for residents and $58 for non-residents.

The gardens will open to gardeners in April and close in November. Growing seasons can vary depending on weather.

Before the garden opens, the metro district will prepare the plots by tilling them. They will also provide a water source for growers, Pileggi said.

In April, gardeners who have reserved a plot will have the chance to hear from the owner of Wilmore Nursery Garden Center, who will offer tips and tricks of growing in Colorado.

Plots will be allocated after March 1.

Those interested in adding their name or organization to the waiting list can call 303-791-2710.

“It's just a great way to meet your neighbors and have some fun together,” Pileggi said.

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