Historic Montclair Community Garden Gardener Agreement






The following guidelines outline the management of the Community Garden and its site

property. These guidelines have been established by Historic Montclair Community Garden

(HMCG) and are provided to the property owner as a basis for a use agreement between the

two parties. In turn, HMCG provides gardeners with the authority and permission to use the

garden site.


We, as a community, have a responsibility to keep our community garden managed effectively.

The community garden is a privilege, and everything works more smoothly when people are

involved in its overall upkeep. Please also remember to treat your fellow gardeners as you

would like to be treated.


Community gardens have a volunteer Garden Steering Committee to collect the plot fees,

assign plots, organize maintenance, and coordinate garden related activities. With your

signature below, you acknowledge as a participating gardener responsibility for the following:


1. Serving on a garden committee or providing community service on kick-off and clean-up days

totaling a minimum of 4 hours per season. (Failure to contribute your hours will result in the loss

of gardening privileges.)


2. Submitting dues for the 2015 gardening season totaling $ 35 membership fee for each plot.

Signed agreements and fees will be collected on April 17, 2015 or within 7 days to secure your



3. If for any reason you find you cannot care for your garden, you are required to notify the

Steering Committee and make arrangements with other gardeners to water and maintain your

plot during your absence. If a garden appears neglected/abandoned (unwatered and/or overrun

with weeds or ripe food wasting), you will be given ten (10) days notice to maintain your plot.

After this time your plot will be re-assigned and harvested, and the membership fee will be



4. HMCG requires water restrictions and conservation measures be followed. A gardener

MUST remain on the premises while his/her garden is being watered. The garden cannot allow

excess water to drain onto the street or adjacent property.


5. It is HMCG policy to prohibit use of non-organic pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers.


6. The maintenance of Common Areas and furnishings, fencing, trees, trash receptacles,

compost bins, street and alley right-of-way, and water lines are the shared responsibility of all



7. Gardeners must have their plot planted by June 15, or the plot will be forfeited and

reassigned if there is a waiting list. If you anticipate a problem, please contact a steering

committee member.


8. Each gardener is responsible for clearing and tilling his/her plot before the close of the

season. All dead plants, weeds, trash, tools, sticks and cages are to be removed or stored by

November 1st. All gardeners must tend their plot in compliance with HMCG’s Maintenance

Guidelines (below).


9.Gardeners may not park in the parking lot adjacent to the garden unless frequenting the

businesses it is supplied for. Posted parking restrictions on Niagara must be followed and insure

no neighbors driveways are blocked. Parking space is included in the garden plan at the rear

(West side of garden.) Maintenance and upkeep is the responsibilities of all gardeners.



10. Garden Steering Committees shall not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color,

national or ethnic origin, religion, marital status, age, sex, sexual orientation, or disability in

its garden membership and the administration of its programs.


11. Dogs are allowed to visit the garden, however they must be tied to the tree and are not

allowed to wander near the plots and plants. We have provided a leash keeping dogs a safe

distance from plants while enjoying their time in the garden shade. Owners must be

responsible for disposing of dog waste in the alley dumpster.


12. In the future, HMCG may be hosting a beehive. Gardeners must not disturb the bees in any

way and should take precautions to avoid bee stings and be prepared for the ramifications if

medication is necessary. Gardeners assume all responsibility for injury as outlined in the Waiver

& Release.


13. HMCG takes no responsibility for theft of personal items, or vegetables.





This document supplements the “Gardener Authorization and Responsibilities” Form Community

garden landowners require Historic Montclair Community Garden (HMCG) to ensure

participants keep their garden sites clean, attractive and orderly at all times – especially during

the winter. The garden must have a year-round unified appearance to landowners, city officials,

and the general non-gardening public. To this end, HMCG established the following

requirements of all participants. The benefits of a well-maintained garden are at minimum threefold:


1. the use agreement for the garden remains in good standing with the landowner,


2. owners, neighbors and non-gardeners enjoy and recognize the community garden as a

community asset, and


3. your community garden will harbor fewer pests and weeds and will be healthier from season

to season.




1. Garden plot: Each plot must be kept clear of weeds, spent plants, debris and trash. Each

fall, turn compost and organic material into the soil and cover it with a layer of mulch to regulate

soil temperature and retain moisture throughout the winter. This makes a garden plot look cared

for to the passer-by. It’s important to recognize all gardeners have a significant role and

responsibility regarding the sustainability of the community garden. Any perennials in your plot

must appear well kept. In addition, you are responsible to maintain the area immediately

adjacent to your plot including paths, compost bins, trash collection areas, fences and the

community garden’s other common spaces.


2. Vertical structures: Structures to encourage vertical growing, including arbors, trellis, tree

branch frames, fence sections, and cages, are only allowed during the growing season if they

are functional, orderly, safe and attractive. Vertical structures used for growing must appear in

good condition and contribute to the community garden’s overall visual continuity. Tomato

cages, beanpoles, stakes or small trellis(s) must be made of thin wood or wire. All growing

structures must be disassembled and removed during the off-season.

Any permanent structures in the community garden will be allowed to remain if they are in good condition and attractive

from the street. Based on our use agreements, HMCG is required to approve all new

(nonseasonal) structures prior to construction.


3. “Off-season” storage: The following items are not authorized to be left standing during the

off-season and must be disassembled and stored in the garden shed (once erected) or removed

from the site when not in use:


• chairs and individual benches,

• shoes, clothes (shed only),

• water bottles, milk bottles,

• sticks, steel “T” posts, • wheel barrows, wagons • bags of compost or leaves

• buckets, plastic containers, • pipe, hoses and nozzles • non-permanent garden art

4. Compost bins: Individual compost bins are discouraged; they typically distract from the

visual continuity of the community garden. We do, however, encourage using and maintaining

community compost bins. All material used in compost bins must be chopped in one to two

inch pieces before being added. Please do not add diseased plant material. Plastic bags of

spent plants, grass clippings and leaves are not allowed to be stored in your community garden

at any time. To “passers-by” they appear as bags of trash. Unopened bags of topsoil, compost

or manure are also not to be stored in your community garden. Chop and spread these

materials in your plot immediately, allowing for decomposition and integration with your existing

soil.Consider trench or pit composting techniques.

If there is need for an additional community compost bin or compost training in the community

garden, please contact us. We will also assist with the purchase or construction of new or

additional community compost bins, as desired.

5. Plot boundaries: We discourage the use of pressure treated landscape timbers and wood;

cedar is a non-toxic alternative. Ideally, the garden steering committee, with input from all

gardeners, selects a preferred material, which if everyone uses, will contribute to the overall

visual continuity of the community garden.

6. The community garden is a “community” responsibility: Everyone must take

responsibility for maintaining the common areas of the community garden, such as:

• compost bin maintenance and tool bin • trees, flower beds and lawn

• pathways and courtyards • trash containment areas

• street fronts and sidewalks

• weeding throughout the season

• Trash bins are to be emptied in the alley dumpster on a regular basis.

• Water leaks must be reported immediately to a steering committee member.





1. I desire to participate voluntarily in the gardening and other activities on the Historic Montclair

Community Garden site.


2. I understand, accept, and assume the risks associated with participation in any and all

activities. I also assume the responsibility of conducting myself in a civil manner which is

mutually beneficial to all participants. Unacceptable conduct generally includes, but is not limited

to, vegetable theft, tool theft, profanity, and any offensive behavior.


3. I assume full responsibility for any injuries which may occur to me, as well as the safety of my

family and guests, and do hereby fully and forever discharge and release the community garden

site landowner, its employees, board members, officers, agents, authorized volunteers,

representatives, consultants, insurers and sureties, and their successors and assigns

(collectively, the "Released Parties") from any "Claims.” "Claims," as used in this document,

mean any and all claims, demands, damages, rights of action or causes of action, present or

future, whether the same be known, anticipated or unanticipated, resulting from or arising out of

my presence or the presence of my family members and guests at the garden, activities at the

garden, the use or intended use of the garden, and/or participation in activities connected with

HMCG including, without limitation, any of the foregoing resulting from or arising out of the

negligence of a Released Party. Further, I hereby waive any and all Claims against a Released



4. I expressly acknowledge that participation in the community garden is for my purposes and

convenience and not for the purpose and convenience of any one or more of the Released



5. In the event that a dispute arises between gardeners or between a gardener(s) and the

designated garden steering committee, and a resolution of the dispute cannot be

reached by these parties, I agree to have an arbitrator hearing of the dispute at my own

expense, and I further agree to adhere to the arbitrator’s decision as final.