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Community garden plots available at Oregon Ridge Nature Center

Community garden plots still available at Oregon Ridge Nature Center in Cockeysville

About a dozen plots remain available for the 2017 season in the Oregon Ridge Nature Center's community garden in Cockeysville, according to center officials.

The garden, which is situated near Shawan Road and Beaver Dam Road, includes 81 10-by-10-foot plots available to interested gardeners who can rent a plot for the season in which to grow vegetables, herbs and more. The garden is managed by the center.

The plots are attractive to people whose yards are too shady for gardens and those who live in an apartment and don't have the available ground space, said Winny Tan, the senior naturalist at Oregon Ridge.

The community garden has been at the center for at least 20 years, according to Tan. She added that the garden is a good way to get the community together, while also generating food.

"People talk to each other, learn different techniques, even share crops sometimes," Tan said, adding that the garden includes protection from deer that might otherwise eat the plants.

The garden is open from March 1 to the end of October. Plots cost $20 for nature center members and $25 for non-members for the season; people can rent more than one plot if desired.

Several rules accompany using the garden space, and users must sign a contract. The garden is organic, so members may not use chemicals on their plots, Tan said.

Additionally, for every plot a person rents they must volunteer four hours to the community garden each year to perform such general tasks as weeding.

A shared shed for tools is provided; users can leave equipment there and others can borrow it, provided they return the equipment.

The nature center will also test the soil in the plots to let gardeners know what might need to be added for optimal conditions; for example, if the soil is very acidic a gardener might add lime, or if there is low organic matter they might add composted leaves.

"We want our gardeners to be successful," Tan said.

To get more information about the plots, or to sign up for one, send an email to info@OregonRidgeNatureCenter.org or call the center at 410-887-1815.

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