DVIDS – News – Fort Knox Community Garden coordinator cultivates enthusiasm for shared green space

Jen DeHaan | Fort Knox News

Fort Knox, Kentucky – Fort Knox has a new face leading its social gardening efforts.

The Fort Knox Community Garden provides a place for growers to come together and share their passion for planting and growing. New Garden As his coordinator, Alisyn Kandybowicz says he wants to apply his experience to green spaces.

“The garden is a beacon of mental and physical health to me,” said Kandibowitz. “My motto is ‘bloom where it is planted’.”

Kandybowicz previously served as a community garden coordinator when his family was stationed in Texas. She said she’s been working on some exciting changes to the Fort Knox space since she was here, the first of which will be a unique new setup.

“Usually community gardens give people a place to garden themselves,” says Kandybowicz. “We are doing something different this year.”

Kandybowicz said he created a more collaborative style garden with a single overall plan that community members could adopt different projects, so everyone could turn them into weekly and monthly tasks according to their interests. You can sign up.

“We have a tomato project, a sunflower project, a pumpkin patch, and so much more,” says Kandybowicz. “With this plan, we are learning together, but everyone can focus on their individual areas.”

According to Kandybowicz, the new plan offers opportunities to collaborate with fellow gardeners or find quiet time alone when needed.

“Each person can do their own project and help each other,” says Kandybowicz. “There are also options that have their own plots.”

Each year the Community Garden has a focused theme. Kandybowicz said this year will help bring different organizations together at the post.

“Our 2023 mission is Food Forest,” Kandibowitz said. “Its main goal is food and safety through education in gardening and nutrition. It has partnered with the Army Physical Resilience Work Group and the Red Cross Helping Hands Food Pantry.

“Excess produce goes to the food pantry.”

Kandybowicz said she’s excited to learn that food grown in her garden has a direct impact on sustaining her community.

“I think the most exciting thing is that our mission is to target each other’s food and safety here at Fort Knox,” Kandibowitz said. “We help each other by providing our produce.”

Kandybowicz explained that harvested crops will be made available in stages. Those who work on individual projects prioritize what they have contributed to growth. Garden members are then notified of the surplus available and all remaining produce is donated to Helping Hands.

In addition to the new yard layout this year, Kandybowicz said there will be another update to aging signs. She came up with a fun way to not only update it, but involve the community in its creation.

“We recruited seven participants to design the new sign,” says Kandybowicz. “They are five schools in the post, then the School Age Center and the Devers Teen Center.”

Kandybowicz said each competitor has a different approach. For example, Scott’s art club works on autographs, whereas Kingsolver’s students all design autographs, and the school votes for the winner, she said.

Once all signs have been completed, Colonel Lance O’Brian, Commander of Fort Knox Garrison, is tasked with picking the winner. Hang the 1st and his 2nd place on either side of the main sign, the 3rd place at the entrance to the garden, and the rest of his 4th place elsewhere in the garden.

Winners will be announced at the garden’s opening day event as well as heralding the start of spring —

“On March 20th, the rice-planting season also begins,” says Kandybowicz. “It depends on the weather, but that’s when we start pushing things forward.”

Although the gardens are the property of Knox Hills, Kandibowitz invited all interested members, inside and outside the Post, to participate. She also said there will be a gardening class on March 4th to teach the basics of planting vegetables.

Whether participants are seasoned gardeners or novices, Kandybowicz said he hopes the new update will spark interest and show Fort Knox the value community gardens bring.

“It’s not just about socializing, it’s also educating the community,” says Kandybowicz. “Like-minded people can gather here and make friends.”

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Editor’s Note: For more information or to receive garden updates, please text Alisyn Kandybowicz at 602-284-5406 or email garden@knoxhills.com.

Acquired data: 2023.01.17
Posted on: 2023.01.17 14:38
Story ID: 436832
position: Fort Knox, Kentucky, USA

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