April 2022 Membership Meeting : Minutes

Garden Contact for inquiries: hollenbackcommunitygarden@gmail.com    33 people in attendance

Saturday, April 23rd, 11am

Introductions (Dana)

  • Welcome to the Hollenback Garden 2022 Season! 
  • Shoutouts: Ernesto et al. for rebuilding beds! Pat, Sandra, Moss, Eric K et al. for turning the compost!  We are in great shape for compost production this year because of their efforts!

 Steering Committee for 2022 season

  • Co-Presidents: Claire Henry and Dana Skallman
  • Ops: Ernesto Leon and vacant (Y Ris not returning this year)
  • Membership: Liz Wagoner and vacant (Emily Sommer is stepping down)
  • Treasurer: Vacant (Mark Lewin acting as interim Treasurer) 
  • Events: Kerri Brewer and vacant (Allison Lichter needed to step down)
  • BQLT Rep: Anastasia Standrik
  • BQLT alternate: vacant
  • VOTE: for Alicia Berbenick for Events NOTES: If there is quorum we would vote, but need to do online
  • SEEKING VOLUNTEERS FOR 
    • TREASURER ROLE: Sasha Malchik, who was voted in last year, is not able to take on the role. Mark, the 2020-2021 treasurer, graciously offered to stay on as acting treasurer until we vote in a new incumbent.
    • OPS ROLE: Is vacant so we need a volunteer to partner with Ernesto
    • MEMBERSHIP ROLE: Emily has to step down, so we’re looking for another person to work with Liz
    • BQLT Alternate ROLE: Looking for someone to partner with Anastasia

Votes for these positions to likely occur electronically in order to get folks in the positions ASAP. Remember, the bylaws stipulate that all members in good standing should serve on the Steering Committee in a capacity at some point.

Covid-19 and the Garden (Dana)

  • Hollenback will be open as usual in 2022; we will monitor any Covid-related developments and make changes to our open status accordingly.
  • Gate stays open when members are in the garden.

Membership Committee (Liz): 

  • SIGN BYLAWS
  • Membership requirements are: Dues & 3 Meetings/ 3 Workdays/ 4 Open Hour sessions 
    1. Memberships can be in pairs
  • Please sign bylaws on paper or online. 
  • Garden is open Saturday and Sunday, 10am-6pm; gardeners complete open hours during these blocks or during other blocks of time. Open hours get recorded in binder in the toilet.
    1. Expect an email for more details about open hour signup
  • There are additional opportunities to earn credits through workshops and sharing NOTES: We will help you make up any workday credits
  • Plant your plot by June 15th, or forfeit it
  • New members and being an apprentice
    1. Shared herb garden
    2. Children’s garden
    3. If you’re new, email: hollenbackcommunitygarden@gmail.com  with your email address, phone number, name, and if you plan to share a membership your partner’s name and contact info. 
  • The plottery/waitlist drawing was conducted on March 15. The results are recorded in the membership tally and those who have indicated they want a plot in 2022 are named below. 
  • We  have seven fully-available plots and two sabbatical (one year) plots to be shared.
  • Members may switch plots in order of seniority before plots are distributed to those without plots. 
  • Those who do not get a full plot assignment will retain their number on the waitlist for next year, and will have priority over 2022 apprentices for plot distribution in 2023. 

NOTES: SC has instituted a change in the way we operate the Plottery so that it is more in line with the bylaws. Now your place in line will be preserved. They ask members to add the year you joined to your name on the Membership spreadsheet

  1. eric k / matthew e
  2. alicia b
  3. moss l / rachel w
  4. anastasia s
  5. constance f / rob s
  6. annie m / isaac g
  7. chelsea f / dylan d
  8. jamie h
  9. stacey j / linsay a
  10. stephanie k / sarah n
  11. helen j
  12. amanda s
  13. sandra w

Operations Committee Update (Ernesto/Dana): 

  • Coordinate physical projects that need to happen. Can email Hollenback email with project ideas.
  • Rebuild raised beds–this is underway, THANKS ERNESTO
    1. Let us know if your bed needs rebuilding NOTES: Adrian wants to volunteer to be 2nd Ops officer
  • Early season goals include: clean up from winter, spring city water hookup, hook up rainwater harvester, replace beds
  • Compost Committee
    1. Has to be turned. Need to find interested folks to coordinate. Let Ernesto/Claire/Dana know if you are interested! So far we have: Moss, Pat, Sandra, Eric K.
    2. Water Committee: Simple — keep water barrels filled and put mosquito things in there. Let Ernesto/Claire/Dana know if you are interested.  So far Peter R. has committed; we need 2 or 3 more folks!
  • Trash–M, W, F (take out Sun., T, Th–trash + recycling)
    1. Take out on night before
    2. Please take out if you see it full or fill it or if you grill or add food
  • Plot maintenance (e.g. things overgrowing; surrounding pots)
    1. Please be mindful of things overgrowing and blocking walking ways and access to others’ plots. NO pots around beds smaller than 10” to ensure clear walkways.
  • Compost! Our food scrap dropoff has been paused since June 2021 due to the previous rat situation.  The bins have now all been lined with rat-proof hardware cloth and have had covers made. We are resuming making compost from garden-generated materials (e.g. weeds, cuttings, leaves, etc.).
  • VOTE: to resume food scrap drop off in our compost production.  This will only be for members, not for the general public.
  • Native Plant areas sub-committee: Shana and Andrea Parker=need other volunteers. This group will steward the native shade (under the Stewartia tree) and native sun gardens (Jane’s old plot), PLUS make a plan for the new rear seating bed with native plants.  They will need to make a design and source/cost new plants.  Then we bring it to the garden to vote on the expenditure.  This is a super fun opportunity to get involved with something that will impact the living structure of the garden for years to come!

NOTES: Shana says let’s try one test brown bin to see if the City is picking it up per her calls

Treasurer (Mark (interim)):

  • Treasury related questions/PayPal issues: hcgbk.treasurer@gmail.com. Please do not email Mark directly. NOTES: We need a new Treasurer candidate for the Members to vote on.
  • Dues and PayPal
    • Dues are $50 to $10, on a sliding scale, and are due by June 15th, via PayPal. NOTES: Mark asks all members to pay $50 unless it constitutes a financial strain. DO NOT USE THE GARDEN GMAIL ADDRESS TO PAY DUES; IT DOES NOT CONNECT TO ANYTHING.
    • The garden’s PayPal username is @HCGBK, or you can use this link: https://paypal.me/HCGBK
    • If your PayPal account isn’t in your name, put your name in the payment “message”.
    • Please select the “Friends and Family” payment type, not “Goods and Services”. 
    • Please do not use hollenbackcommunitygarden@gmail.com in PayPal to pay dues.
    • Unfortunately, we can’t accept dues via Venmo or Zelle.
  • Reimbursements for pre-approved garden-related purchases
    • BEFORE making any purchases, they need to be pre-approved. Email purchase requests to Dana and Claire at hollenbackcommunitygarden@gmail.com for pre-approval.
    • Note that items that exceed $200 require approval via community vote.
    • Once approved and purchased, send reimbursement requests including receipts to hcgbk.treasurer@gmail.com.
    • Reimbursements are paid via PayPal.

NOTES: Mark says there is about $3K in our HOllenback bank account

BQLT Updates (Anastasia): NOTES: We need a second BQLT Rep this year

  • What is BQLT?
    • Brooklyn Queens Land Trust: 35 community gardens as members
    • Liability insurance, nonprofit status, city water, maintenance support
    • Protected land
  • Water will be turned on at the end of April
  • BQLT Point People: Domica Roberts (BQLT) and Alonso Cordoba (our “Ambassador”) 
  • Emails full of info from BQLT to come!
  • Next BQLT Operations & Gardeners in person meeting is on May 7
  • BQLT Arbor Day Event, May 7th, see the email Anastasia forwarded to participate

Events Committee Update (Kerri and Vacant) NOTES: Alicia volunteers to be 2nd Events Chair, if voted

  • Fundraising Ideas: Plant Giveaway/Sale (grow our own seedlings and/or purchase from Go NYC plant sale), Sidewalk Sale during Workdays, DIY Workshop Ideas. 
  • Start propagating house plants! 

NOTES: Events wants to do an event once a monthly for the community. They also want to use social media presence to promote a garden newsletter they plan to create. They also want to connect with the Community Fridge on Myrtle to give any excess produce. Pat Mohr said he works the fridge and needs food but mostly volunteers. 

  • NOTES: Tara would like to have the Harvest Fest this year in tandem with the Block Party
  • Also, Tara requests Ops or another subcommittee make a map of the land, clearly denoting what has been planted there (tree, flowering bushes, annuals) so that members don’t mow or weed it out. Andrea volunteers to help with this. 

Email Protocols (Dana)

  • Listserv purpose; YR is the point person, Emily will help.
  • Only use listserv email for announcements and events that relate to gardening; ex: BQLT updates, events happening w/ Green Thumb, educational opportunities with BBG, watering requests, sharing gathering info with garden. Please do not reply all.
  • It’s NOT MODERATED so use sparingly.
  • Proposals, ideas, concerns, questions–send directly to Claire and Dana (send to Hollenback email: hollenbackcommunitygarden@gmail.com) who will share with SC and respond accordingly. 

Fun Stuff

  • We have our new peach tree in place:  thanks to Shana and all the volunteers who assisted with that effort!
  • Seedlings: GrowNYC order to come! We’ll send an email when they arrive
  • Seedlings: Also an order coming from GreenThumb on Saturday, May 7.
    • 2 flats of veggies/flowers/herbs mix sourced from Rise & Root Farm 
    • 2 flats of native plants mix provided by Greenbelt Native Plant Center 
  • Bees! Tara is spearheading the effort to bring a hive to Hollenback. More updates soon!

NOTES: We read the bylaws aloud, and must remember to change the new member plant date to June 15.

**Conversation about plots vis-a-vis email from Steering Committee of 4/19

Garden Meeting/Workday schedule 2022

  1. Sat. 4/23 at 11am. Meeting and Workday
  2. Wed. 5/18 at 6:30pm. Meeting (in Garden)
  3. Sat. 5/21 at 11am. Workday
  4. Sat. 6/18 at 11am. Meeting and Workday
  5. Wed. 7/20 at 6:30pm. Meeting (In Garden)
  6. Sat. 7/23 at 11am. Workday
  7. Sat. 8/20 at 11am. Meeting and Workday
  8. Wed. 9/14 at 6:30pm. Meeting (in Garden)
  9. Sat. 9/17 at 11am. Workday
  10. Sat. 10/15 at 11am. Meeting and Workday
  11. Sat. 11/19 at 11am. Closing Workday

NOTES:Tara wants to investigate the community funds being used for a paid teen internship/mentorship. Mark cautions about spending money we dont have. Financial resources could be linked to a specific event to pay for that thing.

Rachel S. talked about plot reconfiguration and how much it her her. No vote to member in good standing, but her physical mobility issues make her new plot hard to access. Asks for support to remediate accessibility of plot, to level ground, widen path more than a foot, and wants higher sides like Baraks. Also to remove the bricks and fill the new plot with soil, bc she can’t do heavy labor. She also asks future reconfiguration plans to be made public ahead of time.
Six people volunteer to help her. Barak offers his bed and she accepts, but wants it in her original space. So we separate his bed and trade it with hers, and people help her configure the path and bricks how she likes them, with new bricks donated by Dana.