Conshohocken Community Garden Organizing Document

Conshohocken Community Garden (CCG) is an unincorporated, membership-based organization that provides a community of common-interest members a space, education, and fellowship focused on sustainable gardening.   Gardening is a wonderful form of recreation, socializing, health, peace, and exercise.  The garden facility has 68 plots, a community gathering area, shed, composting area, and shared fruit trees, herb garden, and other plots.

Legal Name.  Conshohocken Community Garden

Mission.  The mission of CCG is to provide a community garden space in Conshohocken Borough.  CCG strives to build fellowship and a place of beauty to enjoy.  CCG promotes sustainable gardening through organic gardening practices, composting, and responsible practices.  CCG shares produce with the community, primarily those in need, and provides education and outreach in urban gardening, sustainable practices, and healthy eating.

Membership.  CCG is a membership organization. Member gardeners receive a plot that they are expected to utilize and maintain to the standards set forth in our bylaws.  Member gardeners are also expected to participate in “running” the garden, participating in CCG activities, and contribute to the general planning and upkeep of the garden.  Produce from a member gardeners plot and a fair amount from common plots is for their personal non-commercial use.

Definitions.  Unless otherwise specified, the following definitions apply:

Members – Pay annual dues and adhere to the criteria specified in the Organizing Document and Bi-Laws

Gardeners – Members and guests who participate in activities inside the bounds of the garden.  All members are also Gardeners.

Conshohocken Community Garden – the organization.

The Garden – The physical plot of land located on the 400 block of East Elm Street in Conshohocken

Revenue.  The primary source of CCG is membership dues.  Membership dues are set at a level to cover all costs to operate the community garden.  However, CCG is happy to take donations to be used primarily for the benefit of the garden, beautification, or outreach.  On an annual basis, no more than 35% of CCG’s revenue may come from non-membership sources.  Neither donations nor dues to CCG are tax deductible.

Community Garden Leadership. As with any organization, there needs to be a structure for leadership.

  • Officers
    • Elections for officers and leadership will be held at the October meeting and again in March if necessary.
    • Officers and leadership will be elected to a two-year term.
    • The officers are: Chair and Treasurer, who will operate as co-chairs
    • The leadership includes both officers, plus Vice-Chair (Maintenance Committee Head), and Secretary, Bylaws & Rules Committee (Inspections). The Chair will be on Membership & Outreach committees.
  • The By-Laws and Rules Committee will have 3 members.
    • The Chair of the garden will guide the By-laws and Rules Committee.
    • A quorum of 50% of the members is required to pass any by-law recommendation.
    • By-Laws suggestions may be presented by any member at any membership meeting for immediate consideration by the committee or consideration at its next meeting if a vote is warranted.
  • Inspection Committee
    • The Inspection Committee will have at least 2 members and up to 5 members.
    • At least one of the members will be an Officer; one must be non-position holding members.
    • The Inspection Committee:
      • Checks all garden plots and aisles to make sure that they are clean, weed-free, hazard free, and follows the garden guidelines.
      • Conducts at a minimum a monthly inspection, bi-weekly in the months of July and August.
      • Warns gardeners whose plots do not meet the criteria and follows up as appropriate.

Membership.  The criteria and capacity for membership is as follows:

  1. Membership capacity is based on the number of garden plots available and is limited to between 10 and 136 members. Membership runs from January 1 to December 31 of any given year.
  2. Returning members are given first priority every year assuming they are in good standing and continue to meet the criteria and responsibilities for membership. Fall-only members are considered returning members for the following year.
  3. Criteria for membership is:
    • A willingness to adhere to sustainable gardening practices
    • Agreement to participate in requisite number of meetings, events including social events, and Community Garden days for maintaining and improving the garden facilities
    • Agreement for adherence to plot standards and shared-area standards.
  4. Members who meet this criteria will be considered members in good standing. This criteria will be determined by demonstration for existing members and agreement by new members.
  5. Applications for open membership in the Conshohocken Community Garden will be considered as follows:
    • Residents of the Borough of Conshohocken
    • Business and property owners in the Borough of Conshohocken
    • Employees that work in the Borough of Conshohocken
    • Individuals outside of the Borough of Conshohocken
  6. A waiting list for membership will be maintained each spring if necessary.
  7. Membership is transferable subject to the approval of Garden Leadership. The “transferred-to” member must meet the criteria for membership as if they were a new member but will not be charged additional dues for the same plot if transferred in-kind.
  8. If a membership becomes available due to an abandoned plot, that membership may be reissued to a new member for a pro-rated membership fee.
  9. Members may have guests help them garden (guest gardeners). Members are required to have their guest sign releases of responsibility prior to gardening.

Non-discrimination.  CCG never discriminates based on actual or perceived ethnicity, race, color, ancestry, religion, national origin, gender, gender identity or expression, martial and familial status, age, sexual orientation, mental or physical disability, use of guide or support animals or mechanical aids and/or source of income. CCG encourages gardeners with disability and special needs to apply for membership.  Member gardener with special needs will be given preferred plots based on their needs (such as plots in wider aisles).  CCG will make reasonable efforts to accommodate all.

Termination.  If CCG is terminated for any reason, the use of any surplus funds is prohibited for private inurement to any individual.   Instead CCG leadership will determine the disposition of any funds or equipment.  Preference will be given to other community gardens or organizations that are consistent with our mission.

Original:  Jan 21, 2017

Revised: February 7, 2017

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