Southwark / Queen Village Community Garden, EST. 1976
311 – 333 Christian Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147
Southwark / Queen Village Community Garden
c/o Queen Village Neighbors Association
P.O. Box 63763, Philadelphia, PA 19147
Southwark / Queen Village Community Garden (SWQVCG), created in 1976, is a space for public gardening, creating and connecting communities and nurturing bio-diversity. Southwark / Queen Village Community Garden is managed as a gardening park by the Neighborhood Gardens Association / A Philadelphia Land Trust and by the gardeners.
A. Each plot must have at least one voting member.
1. Plots may be gardened by one (1) or more gardeners. All gardeners must sign the bylaws and must have their names listed on the annual garden plot map. Each plot may have up to two (2) keys. At least one (1) gardener of each plot must be identified as the primary contact for all garden matters.
2. Gardeners’ voting rights and membership responsibilities are defined in terms of their plot’s rights and responsibilities. These rights and responsibilities are as follows:
a. Each plot has one (1) vote on any matter presented to the membership for a vote. If more than one (1) gardener of a plot is present at a meeting, the voting member must be identified upon sign-in of the meeting and
b. Each plot must attend five (5) meetings and five (5) cleanups (or equivalent) per year. Credit is earned at cleanup or meetings per plot, not per gardener in attendance.
c. Each plot must register for and perform two (2) weeks of watering duty per year, with at least one week during “hot” weather.
d. Each plot must renew its membership annually by May 1.
B. Eligibility for Membership
1. First priority will be given to Queen Village Residents: Delaware River to 6th Street; south side Lombard St. to the north side Washington Avenue.
2. The Garden Chair(s) maintain the waiting list of applicants for membership. Order on the waiting list is determined first by residency and then by date of application.
3. Applicants are accepted according to plot availability. Current gardeners have first preference to apply for a vacant plot. No household may have more than one plot. The Garden Chair(s) will maintain the plot list of assigned plots. Only the Garden Chair(s), after consultation with the Officers, may assign or transfer plots, and should do so based on the expected commitment of the applicants to the goals of the community garden and ability to meet ongoing membership requirements.
C. Membership Requirements
In addition to the requirements described above, each gardener (in single and in shared plots) is required to:
1. sign the SWQVCG By-laws;
2. meet the Garden Criteria and General Rules described below.
D. Gardener Retirement
If a gardener decides to leave the garden and give up his/her plot, the gardener shall give notice to Garden Council within four (4) weeks, or as soon as reasonably possible, after the gardener knows he/she will be leaving the garden.
E. Plot Secession
In shared plots, if one gardener leaves the remaining gardener may, upon approval of Council, continue as the gardener for the plot. If this situation arises, gardeners must notify Council as soon as possible.
F. Membership Fees
1. The purpose of membership fees is to pay for the total annual “basic” costs which include, but are not limited to, water and electric bills, irrigation system operation and maintenance, trash bags and mosquito control.
2. Each plot is responsible for paying annual membership fees for their plot. The membership fees are to be paid at the March garden meeting or as soon afterwards as possible but no later than April 1 or at another date arranged with the garden officers.
3. Each fall, the membership fees for the following year will be determined by taking the current year’s basic costs and dividing it by the number of voting plots in the garden. The fees will be reviewed and approved by the garden officers and reported at the November garden meeting.
4. It is the intention of the garden membership that dues shall not be a barrier to garden membership.
5. A $2,000 “rainy day” fund will be kept in reserve for unexpected costs.
A. Meetings are held on the second Monday of every month from 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm, except the months of December, January and February. If the second Monday needs to be cancelled, the meeting will take place on the second Tuesday of the month.
B. Location of meetings October through March will be at an indoor site; from April through September, meetings will be held in the Garden unless the Chair(s) moves the meeting because of inclement weather.
C. Any plot attending fewer than five (5) meetings per season, March through November, will receive one warning.
1. Any plot unable to attend at least five (5) meetings due to issues outside of gardener control must inform his/her Row Captain.
2. Required meetings are earned per plot, not per gardener.
D. Any Voting Member unable to attend at least five meetings due to issues outside of his/her control must inform his/her Row Captain.
E. The Officers are to give notice and provide an agenda, noting the matters on which a vote will be taken, at least two days before a Meeting.
F. A quorum of fifty percent (50%) of the plots must be present when an amendment(s) to the By-Laws are presented for a vote. No minimum percent of plots are required when putting non-amendment matters to a vote. As explained in the Membership section above, there is one vote per plot.
G. Except for amending the By-laws, all issues to be voted on shall be decided by a simple majority of the Voting Members present at the meeting in which the vote takes place (Ex.: If 20 Voting Members are present a simple majority constitutes 11). The vote of two-thirds of the Voting Members present is required to amend the By-laws, assuming a quorum is present.
A. Regular garden clean-ups are held the Saturday following a garden meeting. Rain dates for clean-ups will be Sunday following a garden meeting. Clean-ups require two hours of work in the common areas as directed by the clean-up leader and excludes any time spent working on the gardener’s own plot.
B. For those who cannot complete the required regular clean-ups, a task list and sign up sheet is posted in the garden shed. Members are to record his/her completed tasks and time to be counted towards the regular clean-up requirement on the sign up sheet. Two hours of tasks equal one regular clean-up.
C. A plot which attends less than five (5) clean-ups annually and without performing equivalent task time will receive one (1) warning.
1. Any plot unable to attend five (5) regular clean-ups (or complete equivalent task time due to issues outside of his/her control) must inform the Row Captain.
2. Required clean-ups are attended per plot, not per gardener.
IV. Election of Officers:
A. Officers are elected to a two-year term at the March meeting. The holding of an office is limited to two consecutive terms.
B. The officers are: Chair(s), Vice-Chair, Treasurer, Corresponding Secretary and Recording Secretary.
V. Row Captains:
A. One or two gardeners per row will be appointed by the Chairs to serve as Row Captain(s) for a term of two-years.
B. Row Captain duties include:
1. Making sure each gardener on his/her row keeps his/her garden plot free of weeds and debris and paths are clear and weed free.
2. Making sure no items are stored in any path (except watering cans).
3. Notifying gardeners in your row of special clean-ups and other events.
4. Notifying gardeners in your row without email service of all meetings, clean-ups, and other activities by phone.
5. Resolving gardeners concerns and grievances or bringing them to the attention of the officers if unable to resolve.
6. Coordinating and leading one clean-up per season.
7. Reporting the general health of the row to the Chair(s) on a regular basis.
VI. Garden Council:
A. The officers, Row Captains, and the immediate past Garden Chair(s) will constitute the Garden Council.
B. The Garden Council will serve as the By-laws Committee to consider proposed changes to the by-laws. The Committee will present its recommendations on the By-laws to the Members. Only the Members can approve changes to the By-laws.
VII. Garden Criteria:
A. Each garden plot must be cleared and planting begun no later than May 1 or the plot will be forfeited.
B. Each plot is responsible for mulching, weeding and clearing the plot and the paths surrounding it. Each plot must chip the paths bordering the plot.
C. Each gardener is responsible for maintaining the ‘health’ of the plot by removing noxious or invasive plants, sickly plant material, rotting plant materials and/or pest infested plants. Any plot receiving notice from a row captain, the Inspection Committee or Garden Council of unhealthy conditions in the plot must clear the unhealthy conditions within five days of receiving the notice. Plots with serious infestation may be cleared at the discretion of the Garden Council or Inspection Committee.
D. Absence: Any gardener unable to maintain the plot due to circumstances beyond his/her control must inform the Garden Chair(s).
E. Gardening activity and plant growth must be restricted to each individual’s plot.
F. The Garden Council will determine if any of the common gardens produce, materials, or supplies may be donated or sold. All proceeds will be turned over to the treasury for benefit of the garden only.
G. Harvesting of Common Areas: The Chair of the Orchard Committee will determine the harvest dates of all common area fruiting plants and will notify the membership of harvesting day(s). Each gardener may pick only enough fruit for a sampling. Please don’t be greedy.
VIII. Inspection Committee:
A. Consists of at least three members of the Garden Council, including a minimum of one current officer.
B. The Committee will conduct inspections in May, June, July and August to ensure that all plots and aisles are clean, healthy, and free of weeds, infestation, and hazards. Additional inspections may be conducted at the Garden Council’s discretion.
C. The Committee will notify the appropriate Row Captains of plots or aisle areas that do not meet criteria and the Row Captains will notify the members whose plots and aisle areas require remediation. Members are expected to reply immediately to such a notice and make arrangements to have the plot and aisle area back to standards within five days of the notice. Failure to comply within five days without adequate excuse, as determined in the discretion of the Chair(s), will result in a warning.
IX. General Rules:
A. As part of the community, gardeners are expected to participate in garden activities and preparation for special events, such as: the PHS City Garden Contest, Fundraisers, Festivals, Holiday Party, Special Projects, and Fall BBQ.
B. Grievances should be brought to the attention of the Row Captain. The Row Captain will attempt to resolve grievances and will convey unresolved grievances to the officers for resolution.
C. Removal or harvesting of any beneficial creatures from the garden is prohibited. No digging of worms.
D. Use of non-organic or synthetic pesticides or herbicides by individual gardeners is not permitted. The Garden Council encourages and prefers gardeners to utilize organic and natural gardening methods.
E. No one may climb trees except at the direction of the Orchard Committee.
F. Gardeners may not damage, prune, harvest, pull out weeds or plants or tend to other gardener’s plot unless specifically invited. Failure to comply with this Rule may result in loss of membership in the Garden. A dismissal requires a majority vote of the Garden Council.
G. Guests and children, must be accompanied by a Voting Member or assisting gardener and obey all garden by-laws.
H. Pets brought into the garden must be restrained on a leash, kept out of plots and the person responsible must clean up after the pet.
I. Illegal activities within the garden, by a Member or his/her guests, will result in the Member’s immediate expulsion.
J. Violation of any of the garden by-laws will result in a warning.
K. Any gardener who does not satisfy the Membership Requirements or receives two warnings in a season is eligible for dismissal. A dismissal requires a majority vote of the Garden Council.
Southwark Queen Village Community Garden
I have read the by-laws governing Southwark Queen Village Community Garden.
I will abide by the by-laws, rules and regulations of the garden. I understand failure to do so may lead to termination of my membership. I understand that if I give up my membership or my membership is terminated, I must return my key in a timely manner.
Please print clearly
Telephone: ( )____ – ______
□ I do not use email. Please have my row captain contact me when necessary.
T o be filled out by a representative of the Garden Council
Amount of Dues Paid: __________ Date: __________