From Parking Lot to Paradise

The Nutley Health Department, Department of Public Works, Greenutley, and the Nutley AmVets have joined forces to lay the groundwork for a Nutley Community Garden.

Joni Mitchell would be proud: instead of paving paradise, this initiative intends to return paradise to the parking lot. Plans are underway to install twelve aboveground planting beds located on property owned by the Nutley AmVets. Residents will have the opportunity to plant their own plot of land with the stipulation to “Grow a Row” in which they grow and donate one row of produce to the American Red Cross Nutley Food Pantry and the Vincent Methodist Care Kitchen. Plots are not only available to residents: Nutley organizations such as scout troops, civic organizations, or any other group interested in gardening are welcome and encouraged to apply.

Gardening is a great form of exercise as well as a fantastic way to get outdoors and socialize with other members of the community who share this common interest. The Nutley Community Garden will be promoted as a bike/walk destination and will include a storage shed and bike rack to accommodate gardeners. Another wonderful feature of the location is its close proximity to a stretch of railroad track that could one day become a “rails to trails” path for walking and biking.

The Nutley Health Department has a solid history of successful health and wellness initiatives such as Yantacaw Walks/Walker Walks, Mayors Wellness Challenge, Nutley Fit Kids, and Healthy School Lunch Recipe Contest. We are thrilled to continue our partnership with ShapingNJ and Partners for Health, which will afford us the ability to bring this long-awaited community garden to Nutley.

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