“Pine Hill Meadow Victory Garden” continues to give

Above: One Southborough neighborhood has turned its open space into a bountiful garden for doing good. (images from Facebook Group)

Last year, a resident from a Southborough neighborhood shared news of their successful efforts to grow food for others in need. This summer, one of the Pine Hill Meadow Victory Garden’s founders asked me to give readers an update on volunteers’ efforts.

last week's harvest for food pantriesIn 2020, the community cultivated and donated over 1,600 lbs of vegetables for food pantries in Worcester County.

This summer, they have already donated over 400 lbs of potatoes, zucchini, eggplant, cucumbers, beans, and tomatoes to pantries. And the bounty is still coming, including a growing crop of corn.

Recipients so far include the Southborough Food Pantry, the South Worcester Neighborhood Center, and Rachel’s Table.

Last September, Kathy Cook wrote to readers, advocating that the garden serves as a model for what the community can do with open spaces. She explained that the garden is on 26 acres owned and controlled by the Pine Hill Road neighborhood under a trust:

wildflower garden in May and JuneAl Hamilton and his wife Diana Wainrib (two of my neighbors) realized that the pandemic has increased food insecurity for many. Historically, our neighborhood has planted wildflowers on our open land. Al and Diana proposed to our organization that we use part of the land to grow healthy food for a Worcester based organization. . .

We were still able to plant the wildflowers in the front part of the garden that fronts Pine Hill Road so that walkers can still enjoy the pretty flowers as they walk. And they can see their neighbors working in the back part of the garden.

This week, Hamilton pointed me to a Facebook Group created this spring. Residents have been sharing photos and updates on the community efforts and success. It includes details on volunteers, invasive pests they’ve battled (like the Colorado Potato Beetle and Stem Borers), and successful harvests.

Below are a sample of the photos from the page. (For more details, click on thumbnails for captions.)

Ledoux family highlights from volunteering in the garden in 2020 Scout Jack Tommany pulling rocks from the dirt patch Planting crops in May Volunteers from St Matthews weeded and installed deer fence uh oh - invasives rear their ugly heads 

Rivers Edge Garden Center donated six flats of veggies steady growth in June and July budding zucchini St. Matthew's Youth Group planted beans, weeded tomatoes, and squished beetles St. Matthew's Youth Group weeded, killed Potato Beetles, and picked rocks

First 2021 delivery in July to Southborough Food Pantry Second harvest Emily and Linda Ledoux harvest yellow beans squishing beetles paid off growing corn 

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Pat D
2 years ago

That is fabulous!! Everyone should be very proud of the work they are doing in this project.

Lisa Feder-Feitel
2 years ago

Diana and Al and their volunteers at Pine Hill Meadow Garden are doing amazing work, especially during this rainy summer, to bring hundreds of pounds of food to neighbors who need it. I hope that this great post inspires others to volunteer!

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