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Old 06-16-2010, 11:14 AM
 
Location: Youngstown, Oh.
4,779 posts, read 7,337,104 times
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I'm trying to convince my neighbors that we should create a community garden.

But, they are older, and aren't interested in taking on the maintenance of another garden that isn't theirs. (I think I could convince them to help with the initial building/planting, though)

I'm still in the early stages of figuring this out. But, what I'd like to do, is create the framework for a garden on a vacant lot. (create raised beds, and get everything ready for planting) Then we would offer garden plots to the neighborhood kids who would then be responsible for their plot. We would teach them how to take care of their plants, and if they grew something edible, they would get the benefits of eating healthy food. If we find enough interested kids, and fill all of the planting space, they would do all the work, after we taught them how.

But, if we don't find enough interested kids, I would suggest planting low/no-maintenance perennials to beautify the area, instead of leaving it barren. And, that's why I started this thread, to get ideas about what we could plant, that would require minimal maintenance, if there are spaces left over.

Youngstown is in zone 5, and the lot I have in mind would get full sun. There would only be shade in the morning, and late afternoon.

So, does anyone have any suggestions?
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Old 06-16-2010, 11:22 AM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
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Daylilies
Rudbeckia
Achillea
hosta
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Old 06-16-2010, 11:27 AM
 
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echinesia (purple coneflower0
monarda (bee balm)
shasta daisy
coreopsis
whirling butterflies
helianthos
sunflowers
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Old 06-16-2010, 11:58 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
31,152 posts, read 57,274,608 times
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Day lilies would be great, especially the wild ditch lilies -- they'll eventually spread to fill the entire space. Drive along the roadside and dig some up ... that's how I got mine!

Low-growing ground cover roses also would look good, and keep out the weeds.

Blanketflower (gaillardia) or coneflower (echinacea) also are very colorful, bloom all summer, and fill out the space. You can grow them from seed -- plant in the late summer or early fall, and they'll bloom the next summer.
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Old 06-16-2010, 12:06 PM
 
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For springtime, try daffodils & tulips. Here in TN they spread like crazy without any work. I assume they would do the same in Youngstown. What about four o'clocks? They grow out of control here. But, I don't know about zone 5.
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Old 06-16-2010, 12:08 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
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The list above is pretty good, I think that is enough to have a really nice garden. The only thing I did not see that I would add are roses. They are pretty low key if you plant them in the right place. Good luck.
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Old 06-16-2010, 01:03 PM
 
Location: Youngstown, Oh.
4,779 posts, read 7,337,104 times
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Thanks for the suggestions! I would never even have thought to look for ground cover roses to keep weeds down.

I know plants like shasta daisy and rudbeckia are great, as I have some in my own garden. But I do deadhead (the daisies) and cut down dead stems (of both) in spring. Is that absolutely necessary? (I know I asked for no maintenance and low maintenance, but I'm leaning toward no maintenance if possible )

Thanks again, and any more advice would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 06-16-2010, 01:13 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
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if you don't deadhead, you will spread alot of seeds all over the garden which could be good or not. This garden sounds good but be sure you have alot of volunteer help lined up. Most community gardens get better results if they produce veggies instead of ornamentals. Everybody likes to eat.

Frankly I think a garden started and not maintained is worse than no garden at all.
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Old 06-16-2010, 01:29 PM
 
Location: Philaburbia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JR_C View Post
I know plants like shasta daisy and rudbeckia are great, as I have some in my own garden. But I do deadhead (the daisies) and cut down dead stems (of both) in spring.
That's why I suggested the blanketflower and echinacea; you really don't have to deadhead them for the plant to stay attractive. Their seedheads are attractive as well, and provide great food for nuthatches, chickadees, and finches.
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Old 06-16-2010, 04:02 PM
 
Location: Youngstown, Oh.
4,779 posts, read 7,337,104 times
Reputation: 4290
Quote:
Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
if you don't deadhead, you will spread alot of seeds all over the garden which could be good or not. This garden sounds good but be sure you have alot of volunteer help lined up. Most community gardens get better results if they produce veggies instead of ornamentals. Everybody likes to eat.
Well hopefully, we would have lots of volunteers to grow food. But, if we have more planting space than volunteers to use it, at first, I think planting flowers would be better than nothing.

Quote:
Frankly I think a garden started and not maintained is worse than no garden at all.
Well, right now, it's a vacant dirt lot on a fairly prominent corner. The house was demolished last year. Given enough time, I'm sure it will fill in with weeds, though.

Since the other neighborhood officers don't seem too interested in this project, maybe I should just get some seeds of native plants, and scatter them around the site this fall?
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