Garden Guidelines

FIRST AND FOREMOST:       Be Considerate       Grow Things         Pitch In

Topics in the guidelines: 


  • An annual membership meeting will be held each Spring.
  • Garden plots will be offered through a lottery-style drawing and selection.
  • Up to one plot may be renewed on a priority basis every year without participating in the Plottery. All remaining plots will be offered to new members through the annual Plottery. After all interested gardeners have one plot, members may acquire a second plot on a year to year basis, as available. There is no guarantee that members will be able to keep their second plot for more than one year. (This assures as many people as possible the opportunity to garden with us!)
  • Members are responsible for using their garden plot and for closing out their plot at the end of the season. Members who have not worked on their plot by May 31st will be contacted as to their intentions. Garden beds that are not closed out by the Fall close-out work party will be contacted and possibly charged for the time it takes to close them out.
  • Previous season unfulfilled volunteer hour fees owed must be paid by the week after the Fall close-out work party to renew your plot for the next year.
  • Membership fees must be paid by April 1 for new plot holders and by March 1 for renewing members.
  • $10 membership fee and current rate of $1.25 ft2 / per year(plot sizes are pre-determined and based on availability)
  • 5 volunteer hours must be completed each year by the Fall close-out work party. Members must pay $10 per unfulfilled hour. Hours can be tracked in books at each garden or sent via email to the board.
  • New members inquiring about available plots should apply for a plot or email the Board President, Rachael —

Community Garden Maintenance

  • Half the fun of a community garden is that we have many hands to get things done!
  • Please write your volunteer hours and what you did in the notebook at the garden or send them via email to help us keep track. 5 hours minimum, more welcome! We also encourage you to contact the Membership Coordinator with your hours served.
  • Some volunteer tasks that regularly need to be completed are:
    • clean or repair tools
    • pick slugs and pull weeds from community plots (look for community plot label)
    • clean greenhouse
    • weed and lay mulch on Crow Hill hillside
    • help organize an event (contact DCG board with interest)
    • Have another idea? Contact the volunteer coordinator for approval. Thanks! (Note this isn’t strict – if it is something that obviously needs to be done, please do it – we’ll credit the time. But, if uncertain an email or note left at the garden is always appreciated.)

Pesticides, Herbicides, Fungicides, and Fertilizers

  • Pesticides and herbicides are not allowed at the Douglas Community Gardens unless authorized by the Board.
  • Fertilization- We recommend that you amend your soil with seaweed, shells, and moderate amounts of compost or composted manure.
    • Over Fertilization can be a problem. If you use synthetic fertilizers, please do so sparingly and keep the following records: active nutrient levels (ie.16-16-16 or whatever), amount applied (ie. # ounces), and dates applied.

Organic Plot Maintenance Basics

  • Pull weeds before they seed
  • Pluck slugs
  • Keep it clean, practice good gardening hygiene
  • For more gardening tips contact the Cooperative Extension Service website or our local UAF-CES Agriculture/Horticulture and 4-H Agent at 796-6281.

Materials and Tools

  • Please be respectful of community tools and materials
  • Community Tools and supplies are to remain at the gardens, never taken home (unless being repaired or authorized by the Board).
  • Return tools and equipment clean and in good working order. Tools should be washed using the hose to thoroughly remove dirt and debris.
  • If a tool needs to be repaired or if you have a suggestion of a tool that would be useful to have, please contact a board member.


  • No permanent structure may be placed at the gardens without prior approval from the DCG Board.
  • Hoops should not block light from neighboring plots. Hoops should be no more than 3 feet higher than ground level.
  • Please also consider the height of your plants and how they might affect light on your neighbors plot. Sunshine is already limited enough in Douglas, let’s try to help each other out!


  • Both sites have composting bins set up (made out of wooden flats). Please help fill them with both brown and green compostable material.
  • Do not compost: weeds, potato stalks, tomato stems, or diseased plants
  • Please contact the board if you’d like to be on the composting committee, a great opportunity to earn volunteer hours


  • B Street Site has a greenhouse. Please contact the Greenhouse Coordinator (TBD) or the Board before growing something in the greenhouse.
  • Pest management in the greenhouse is very important.


  • Weed management is an important part of community gardening, else everyone’s plots suffer. Please:
    • Dig and pull weeds and all their root parts
    • Don’t put weeds in compost. Throw in trash or burn
    • Cut flower heads before seeds set and spread
    • Plant aggressive, yet wanted plants in containers (such as mint)
    • Cover and put tarps on beds not being used
    • Be careful not to spread known weeds to other areas, i.e. compost
    • Help your neighbor (share your garden knowledge, not the weeds)
  • Most plants can be grown in the DCG plots, but we must be considerate of our gardening neighbors (often divided only by a string) and SE Alaska’s ecosystems. Invasive plants have a tendency to be aggressive and escape cultivation and can alter ecosystems. They must be detected early and handled properly to prevent a future problem. Please alert the Board if you suspect an invasive plant is growing at either DCG location.
  • Please do not plant Invasive Plants or other common weeds at the Douglas Community Garden. Visit this site for a list of non-native plants and their invasiveness rankings. Plants ranked over 50 may not be planted. Plants ranked between 30 and 50 should be planted in a container.
  • If you are unable to keep the weeds in your plot manageable, you may be notified by the Board. If you are further unable to manage weeds, we may transfer the stewardship responsibility (and control of the plot) to someone else.

Pets and Children

  • Please keep pets on leashes while in the garden. Do not let them walk or do other business in or around garden boxes. Additionally, please clean up after your pet.
  • The DCG encourages you to involve your own and/or other children in your gardening venture. Please make every effort to see that children respect plots and walkways.
  • Parents are completely responsible and liable for the actions of their children and their pets.

Youth Plots

  • There are two designated youth plots at B Street. If these plots are not used for youth activities, they will be considered community plots and gardeners may plant and care for them for volunteer hours. Members helping out may harvest small amounts from community plots, and some produce may be donated.

Unwanted Activities

  • Please, do not use tobacco products at the garden.
  • Diseases from the tobacco, the same ones that are present in tobacco products infect other solanaceae (tomato, potato, eggplant).
  • Report theft, vandalism, and other unwanted activities to a board member for immediate attention.

End of the Season

  • It is the responsibility of each member to leave the plots clean and useable for the following season.
  • All plots must be closed before the Fall close-out work party, unless alternate plans made with the Board.
  • Plan ahead to prevent negligence of fall cleanup.
  • Remove and burn all potato and tomato stems and vines.
  • Pull weeds and cover plots with plastic to prevent soil nutrient leaching and unwanted weeds from settling in bare soil.
  • Record what crops were grown in the plot so future gardeners can maintain healthier soils by rotating crops. Send records to the Board if you do not plan on renewing your plot the following year.
  • There will be a Season close out work party each Fall. All beds will be closed down unless alternate plans have been made with the board. This is a great opportunity to finish up volunteer hours.
  • End of season tool clean-up: We will scrub tools with brushes from a bucket of soapy water, rinse them and then put the tools into a bucket of bleach water for 10 minutes, remove tools, dry them off and then apply oil from a damp rag to prevent rusting. Tools will be put away and inventoried to determine what tools need to be replaced for next year.

Have fun gardening and thanks for being active Douglas Community Garden Members!

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