The McMaster Teaching & Community Garden (MTCG) is a University sustainability initiative with the objective of facilitating local food production while providing teaching and learning opportunities, and engaging the McMaster and greater Hamilton community. The project has been underway for several months with Honour’s Integrated Science (iSci) students Julianne Bagg and Emily Taylor taking on the roles required for establishing the planning foundations in the 2012 winter term. This included the creation of a detailed budget with anticipated costs, successful grant applications, and the establishment of connections to a number of groups, departments, and individuals from across McMaster’s campus. Mike Lee is the 2012 University Sustainability intern who is responsible for facilitating the physical implementation and McMaster and Hamilton community integration of the garden. Mike will communicate semi-frequent project updates via this page.
MTCG has been approved for three separate grants, which include Scott’s Miracle-Gro Grasssroots Grant, McMaster Academic Science Fund, McMaster Student Life Enhancement Fund as well as one private donation, upon which the project will be funded by.
Note: All donations will be directed to the McMaster Teaching and Community Garden Fund
Location and Design
The garden is located on the North Side of McMaster’s General Science Building (GSB) (across from the Refectory; Bridges Café). The design features two raised beds, two street level beds, and permeable paving pathways. The garden is also conveniently located beside the GSB outdoor classroom, which will facilitate effective teaching and learning as it relates to the garden.
The garden plan includes a variety of plants and vegetables, all chosen to grow optimally in the garden's setting.
Fruits, vegetables and herbs will be grown in the garden incorporating permaculture and organic practices. Permaculture (a derivative of “permanent agriculture”) is a design system for creating sustainable, minimal impact food production through the integration of natural ecological processes. This will include no-till soil building, mulching, vertical planting and companion planting, with more to be incorporated in the future.
Excavation of the garden site began on June 11th, 2012. The outline for the beds has been formed, the permeable pavement pathways have been laid and the two raised beds built. Fencing installation started the week of June 18th, 2012 and is now complete.
McMaster Facility Services, Grounds Department (Grounds): Responsible for the garden design and the supplier of soil, wood and pathways, in addition to labour for construction and fence installation. Grounds also granted access to greenhouse space for plant storage and provided the donation of tools for garden activities. Integrated Science Program (iSci): Responsible for planning the integration of the garden into McMaster’s academic programs. Will start with iSci and communicate with other departments and Faculties for other potential content. iSci faculty and students will also apply and re-apply for grants for future garden maintenance and improvement. McMaster Students Union (MSU): Responsible for support to the maintenance of the garden and collaboration with Mac Farmstand and Mac BreadBin. Green Venture: Responsible for a donation of a portion of plants. Green Venture will also connect the garden with the Hamilton Community Garden Network for integration into the surrounding garden community. Green Venture is an organization that works to connect people and ideas to facilitate sustainable living with cleaner, healthier communities in the Hamilton area. Office of Sustainability: Responsible for providing support for student internships and the campus-wide facilitation of the program.
The above partners are just a few of a larger number of other groups, departments and individuals who have worked together to make this initiative possible. Our list of partners is continually expanding.
For more information and to get involved please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
News and Events
Seed Starting Workshop to Support the McMaster Teaching and Community Garden
On Wednesday, February 27th, students enrolled in Sustain 2A03 – The Sustainable Future Project will host a seed starting workshop for which all proceeds will directly support the students’ experiential learning project: Growing the McMaster Teaching and Community Garden.
By participating, you will learn how to start a plant from seed, as well as become familiar with gardening terminology and proper care techniques to ensure your plants can thrive. You will leave with your soon-to-be plant, which you have prepared yourself!
When: Wednesday, February 27 from 1:30 – 2:20 PM
Where: McMaster University Student Centre, Room 318
Admission to the workshop is a suggested $5 donation. Additional donations are welcomed.
Formal donations can be made through University Advancement, by clicking here. Gifts of $10 or greater will receive a donation receipt.
Help us further encourage a culture of sustainability at McMaster while you add green to your thumb!
For more information about Sustain 2A03 – The Sustainable Future Project, please click here.
Summer and Fall 2012 Harvest
Since the garden's inception in July to the beginning of October, more than 20 kg of produce has been harvested from the garden! All of this produce has been either sold at Mac Farmstand to help fund the garden or donated to Mac Bread Bin's voucher program to help financially disadvantaged students. Produce includes peppers, eggplants, tomatoes, spring beans, swiss chard, arugula, basil and rosemary.