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TOWNSEND — The community gardens perched at the top of Bayberry Hill Road are tilled and awaiting area growers.

This is the third season the gardens have been on the grounds of the Townsend Ecumenical Outreach headquarters.

It is an ever-evolving endeavor. This year, the plot was moved to the other side of the septic system, organizer Nancy French said, so it would not interfere with the leach field.

The garden is a group effort.

Organizer Darryl Clark tilled the ground, but some rocks remain. It is New England, after all.

A deer fence, funded by a grant from the New England Grass Roots Environmental Fund and installed by volunteers, surrounds the lot and a gate will be done soon, French said.

A group of youth volunteers from a local church installed landscape material and stones along the perimeter to prevent animals from digging under the fence.

There is room for more gardeners. Last year, nine people signed up for plots.

The extra space was used to grow 20 pumpkins and seven cases of butternut squash for clients of the TEO food pantry.

Land will be allocated for the food bank again this year, and individual gardeners can always give some produce away on food pantry day as French did last year.

In previous years, a picnic area provided a place for people to sit and chat. The picnic area is gone but “it would be nice if we could set up a little seating area,” French said as she eyed a pile of bricks that could be used to create a patio or pave paths.

Plots are 15 feet by 20 feet and cost $25 plus five hours of volunteer labor for the season. Current year clients of the food bank will not be charged for a plot.

The other costs can be minimal. Compost and water will be provided.

In the past, the Flower Hutch has donated seedlings. French obtained herbs and perennials through freecycle. All it cost her was the gas to pick the plants up.

A work and planting session is scheduled for Tuesday, June 5, at 6 p.m. at the garden. All are welcome to visit the garden and to volunteer, even those without a plot.

New gardeners will have a chance to meet more experienced growers and learn the ropes.

French is hoping plenty of people will garden this year.

“The more people renting plots, the more people hanging out here,” she said.

For information about the garden at 82 Bayberry Hill Road, contact organizer Darryl Clark at or 978-877-7954.

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