Meeting Minutes – March 11, 2022

Attending: Lisa, Amber, Corianne, John, Lesley, Mary Grace
Meeting Start/End Time: 7:05 PM/8:10 pm
Quorum: YES

  • Mary Grace, President of the Renfrew Community Garden reminds us that there are vacancies on the RCA Board of Directors. If you are interested in the positions of Treasurer or Director of Membership/Volunteering, please contact Mary Grace at the RCA.
  • Communication – WE ARE CHANGING (from WhatsApp) TO SIGNAL. Signal is secure & not affiliated with Facebook. Amber made the motion and Lesley seconded. The vote is unanimously in favour of SIGNAL. Corianne and Amber offered to send out notifications so that everyone will quickly be transferred to SIGNAL.
  • Garden Therapy Sessions (work bees) dates are listed under the EVENTS tab. We will continue to have DOODLE sign ups but as COVID restrictions ease, we can be more relaxed and additional gardeners can join. DOODLE invitations arrive to you via email… so watch out for that.
  • Unfortunately, the City of Calgary Parks department has vetoed BEES for this summer. We will continue to monitor the BUZZZ to see if the potential is there in the future.
  • Garden Roles
    • Chair – Lisa
    • Membership – Amber
    • Events Coordinator – Tereasa
    • Garden Correspondent – VACANT!! (currently done by Lisa Mulder)
    • Composters – VACANT!!!
    • Forester – Lisa
    • Public Pick Gardener – Heike
    • Historic Bed/Public Pick Gardener – Mikki
    • Grant Application – Lindsey (let’s get in touch to discuss)
  • Budget – our budget was passed!
    • Garden Soil purchase coming
    • Social & Educational Events have some funding
  • Bylaws – our Bylaw changes were passed
  • Electronic Forms – Mary Grace (President of the Renfrew Community Association) is going to try to get us on the RCA Google workplace so that we can use their Google Forms.
  • Reminders
    • Orientation Meeting – Mandatory
    • Volunteer Commitment – through scheduled “Garden Therapy Sessions”
    • Garden Soil Top Up – we’ll need extra help to distribute to garden beds!
    • Check out the website at
  • RCA Night Market – Mary Grace offered us the opportunity to have a table at the RCA Night Markets. This sounds like an awesome way to build up volunteer hours and share in some good fun 🙂
  • SIGN – The MiracleGRO sign has been vandalized over the past few years. Lisa emailed MiracleGRO to ask them if they’d like to redo the sign for us and we haven’t heard back from them. So we’d like to replace it with something new and unique. One idea offered by Mary Grace is that we coordinate with the mural planned for the RCA (by Artist Billy Rae). Other ideas are welcome!! We will follow this up in future meetings.

Background: Currently gardening members may rent multiple beds. These members have first dibs on all of their current beds year after year.

Amber moves that by the deadline of January 31 each member would have to declare the one bed that they want to keep for next summer and any extra beds would be available to a new member. If that bed is not taken by April 1, it will be offered to the same member as a second bed, and then to the pool. John seconds the motion.

If this motion is passed, the bylaws would be amended as follows:

Due by January 31: the full annual RCG registration package for current members to…
● retain their current bed; or if they have multiple beds, they must declare the one bed they wish to retain (and the others would return to the pool).
After January 31…
● available beds will be offered to prospective members based on their position on the waiting list.
After April 1…
● available beds will first be offered to last summers occupants as second beds
● then finally, offered to all of the current gardening members as second beds

Vote will be taken at the next meeting.

RCG Design Features

In the Google Maps screenshot of the Renfrew Community Garden you can see some of the more prominent features that were incorporated into the design. See that the garden layout resembles Renfrew itself. 8 Avenue and Russet Road are prominent as are Regal and Bridge Crescents. You can see where Stanley Jones School and the Renfrew Community Association buildings are as well as Bridgeland Park. It’s not hard to notice that the in-ground beds surrounding the garden closely resemble a trilobite.

Meeting Agenda – January 21, 2022


In attendance: Lisa, Julia, Chad, Jared, Amber, Stephanie, Maria, Rachel, Christine, Leslie, Heike
Quorum: Yes
Started 7:15 PM
Ended 8:09 PM


  • Garden Chair – Lisa Mulder
  • Membership Coordinator – Amber Parkhill
  • Events Coordinator – Tereasa
  • Compost Committee – Rob and Borden

Registration Procedure

  • The process for registering for a bed is to send an email to to express interest and get on the waiting list. Once a bed is available, you’ll be asked to complete a registration form, submit your RCA membership number, and make a payment.
  • Renfrew Community Association is updating their payment system online so we can’t actually pay yet, but Amber is taking care of it. Amber will let you know when to pay. Everything else is due January 31, 2022.

Budget for this Summer

  • Vote required to proceed to RCA for their approval.
  • Approved by the membership unanimously


  • Two changes
    • password control
    • new simplified registration form
  • Vote required to proceed to RCA for their approval. Vote passed unanimously!
  • Jared suggests that we make that form electronic (Google Forms, can we digitally sign) for Summer 2023.

Summer Agenda –

  • Social Events!! – these dates are DRAFT!
    • Saturday, May 14, 2022 – Gardening 101 Workshop with the Calgary Horticultural Society
    • Saturday, July 9, 2022 – Meet your Neighbours Garden
    • Saturday, August 13, 2022 – Summer Tea In The Garden
    • Saturday, September 17, 2022 – Autumn Potluck/Picnic
  • Garden Orientation!! (1 of 2 sessions are MANDATORY)
  • Garden Therapy Sessions – DOODLE Signup to come via email
  • Garden Business Meetings


Rant & Raves

  • new spigot
  • replacement SCOTTS sign
  • new hose reel hose/female to male converter
  • Rachel suggestions… Compost Leaves are available – 14th Ave collects leaves… we could help rake and get leaves to collect the leaves… there are lots. Jon and Rebecca would collect leaves here and put them in the garden compost.
  • Leslie – WhatsApp is currently used. Suggests using SIGNAL instead because it doesn’t collect personal information.
  • Jared – suggests Slack as being an option.

Meeting Minutes – June 18, 2021

Present: Mikki, Lisa, Christine, Ashley, Darren, Maria, Jaryd, Corianne
Quorum: Yes
Meeting Started: 7:01 PM
Meeting Ended: 7:40 PM

Approval of Last Meeting Minutes – Approved

Old Business

Purchased from 2021 Renfrew Community Garden – Pandemic Emergency Budget

  • Mulch
  • Hose Reel
  • Spray Wands and Nozzles
  • Padlocks

Garden Orientation Meeting

  • Anyone not able to attend the original 2021 Garden Orientation Meeting is still expected to complete that requirement. Email to follow.

New Business

Irrigation Outlet Leaking

Thank you to Christine who spent an hour on the phone today with 311 to report our leaking irrigation outlet at the garden!! Thanks so much Christine!!

Volunteer Commitment – Does volunteering throughout the community contribute to the RCG Volunteer commitment?

No, the RCG volunteer commitment is separate from other community events. The RCG volunteer commitment is to be fulfilled at RCG “Garden Therapy” events or other approved efforts… although events are not restricted to the Renfrew Community Garden site only. Additional gardening events can be planned at other locations, but must be organized through the RCG to be eligible for the volunteer commitment.

Storage Shed

The storage shed has been torn apart by wind and is barely standing. We are going to organize a work event to build a new shed. The new shed will have two front facing doors which open to the west. The front half of the roof will flip up and fold back onto the back half of the roof. There will be one locking mechanism to secure the shed. Here is our plan:

  1. Develop an architecture plan and approve a plan amongst us – if you have access to a plan, please post on FB or WhatsApp.
  2. Create a budget which will include all lumber and hardware required for the build.
  3. Submit the budget for approval to the Renfrew Community Association for their approval at the June 28, 2021 meeting.
  4. Once approved, we will schedule a build party date.
  5. We will purchase the material.
  6. We will build the shed (currently we have Darren, Corianne’s hubby Al and Lisa on the building committee).
  7. We will move the shed to the site – we need a plan for this as well.

Meeting Minutes – April 15, 2021

Commenced: 7:04 PM
Closed: 7:12 PM
Quorum: Y
Attendees: Lisa, Heike, Jaryd, Christine, Samantha, Ashley, Shelley, Robert, Borden, Stephanie, Terry, Roxanne & Kevin, Lindsey, Mikki, Chad, Ziaolei, Maria, Tamara, Lori

Past Meeting (February 19, 2021) Minutes – APPROVED

New Business

The 2021 Renfrew Community Garden – Pandemic Emergency Budget was approved by the Renfrew Community Association on March 30, 2021. Some of the items approved in the budget are:

  • mulch
  • wooden stakes
  • hardware for compost bins
  • whiteboard for signs
  • hose reel
  • spray wands and nozzles
  • padlocks

These items will be deployed to the garden at the scheduled “Garden Therapy Sessions” (work bees).

2021 RCG Garden Orientation Meeting followed this business meeting (7:12 PM – 8:00 PM).

Meeting Minutes – February 19, 2021

Commenced: 7:00 PM
Finished: 7:50 PM
Attendees: Amber, Borden, Christine, Corianne, Heike, Jaryd, Jon, Leslie, Lisa, Mikki, Lesley, Lori H, Lori Y, Maria, Rob, Sharon, Stephanie, (Julia)
Quorum: Yes

Introductions of returning and new members were completed with recognition for those members with special portfolios:

  • Chair – Lisa
  • Membership – Amber
  • Garden Correspondent – Tamara
  • Composters – Jon, Rob, Borden
  • Grant Writer – Lindsey
  • Site & Grounds – Corianne & Leslie
  • Forester – Lisa
  • Social Director – Tereasa
  • Public Pick Gardener – Christine!!

Projects & Grants
A list of grants was posted last week (February 17, 2021) on our blog at If you are interested in heading up a project, our Grant Writer, Lindsey is interested in writing up a grant application! Please step forward and let us know!

Volunteer Opportunities/Commitment
Membership at the RCG includes a volunteer commitment. There are several opportunities to build up your volunteer hours: contribute to our “Garden Therapy Sessions” (physically oriented work bees) or take on a Garden Portfolio which would be more cerebral, organizational and/or computer oriented. If you feel that you’re more comfortable with a Garden Portfolio, please let me know and we can coordinate a role. If I don’t hear from you, then be sure to volunteer for “Garden Therapy” (work bees). 🙂
Garden Therapy Sessions (ie. Work Bees) dates are listed at To sign up, watch out for the email invitation… we use DOODLE.

Sadly the global pandemic continues for a second gardening season. We must abide by legislated guidelines and restrictions. Currently, we can’t host an outdoor gathering of more than 10 people. For that reason, our Garden Therapy Sessions will be limited to 6. Please ensure that you maintain physical distancing with those not in your household, wash your hands before and after attending the garden, do not share gardening tools, protect your children from high touch surfaces, etc. A detailed list can be found further down in this blog history (May 14, 2020).

We brainstormed items that we need for our upcoming summer season: industrial strength watering wands and hose reel, high pressure hose (like a laundry hose) for the hose reel, plastic fencing, mulch, stakes for copper name labels and hasp latch hardware for the compost bins. Jon will donate some wooden stakes. Jon also requested a pitchfork for the compost bins, so we’ll put one in the compost bins for exclusive compost use. The budget is due to the RCA by February 23, 2021.

Seed & Seedling Share
If you have extra seeds and seedlings to share, let us know on WhatsApp. A caring soul or two will gladly take them in.

Jon has worms. I mean, Jon has worms to give away for in-home vermicomposting. Give Jon a shout if you’re interested in adopting some of his brood.

Garden Grant Opportunities

Thank you to our Grant Writer, Lindsey for researching some grant opportunities for our garden. Below are some of the grants opportunities that Lindsey identified as candidates. Each of these grants requires a Project Manager. If you’d like to see a project come to life at the Renfrew Community Garden, funding can be found through one of these grants. Contact Us to partner your great idea with one of these grant opportunities to see a project come to life!

On this website called Alberta Council for Environmental Education there’s a long list of grant opportunities.  I have summarized the ones below that would be applicable for the Renfrew Community Garden.  Grants, Contests, & Awards |

TD Friends of the Environment Foundation Grant supports environmental initiatives with a primary focus on environmental education and green space programs. Eligible projects include schoolyard greening, park revitalization, community gardens, park programming, and citizen science initiatives. Amount: Funding requests are needs based, and there is no set minimum or maximum amount for which you can apply. However, the majority of TD FEF grants are between $2,000 and $8,000. Deadline: January 15, 2021. 

Alberta Ecotrust: Major Projects & Community Grants support community-based projects that typically focus on local opportunities for change through stewardship and action. Major Grants are designed to support more comprehensive projects that have the potential to result in substantial environmental benefit. Amount: up to $7500 for community projects & $30 000 for major grants. Deadline: Fall and Spring each year. 

Honda Canada Foundation: Grants provide funding for educational institutions, non-profit organizations, and other, tax exempt, national institutions in the fields of family, environment, engineering and education. Amount: 1.5 million+ funds disbursed annually. Deadline: Year-round.

Regarding the Alberta Native Plant Council grant, the application deadline is February 28.  If you have an idea of which native plants are required and high level scope I could attempt drafting the application; however I do required some overall guidance on vision of the  scope.  Here’s a link to the application to give you an idea of what’s required.   download the application form

Meeting Minutes – November 27, 2020

Meeting Commenced: 7:07 PM
Meeting Adjourned: 8:23 PM
Quorum: yes
Attending: Amber, Corianne, Crystal, Lesley, Lindsey, Samantha, Mikki, Lisa

Bylaw Update

Bylaws were reviewed and updated. The new bylaws will be posted shortly and will become effective immediately.


A new budget will be created and submitted to the RCA for approval for summer 2021.

Old Business

Heike’s sign (the driftwood sign at the north entrance to the garden) was revitalized and painted!
Compost bins, repaired last fall were in great condition all summer! The composters produced something like 6 gallons of beautiful, black compost this fall!!
The waterbarrel is still on loan to Saddleridge Community Garden.
Copper tags were stamped with tree and bush names for labelling the plants at the garden!!


The annual election was completed. The position of Chair was won by acclimation.

Garden Roles & Positions

Thank you to all those who took on Garden Roles this summer. Jon & Rebecca did composting, Rebecca wrote the Renfrew Reflections articles all year! Amber’s work as Membership Coordinator is ongoing and awesome! Mikki oversaw the Historical (public pick) bed and Lisa grew potatoes for donation in the donation bed.

For 2021, the roles are:

  • Chair – Lisa
  • Membership Coordinator – Amber
  • Garden Correspondent – Tamara
  • Grant Writer – Lindsey
  • Site & Grounds Managers – Corianne & Lesley
  • Forest – Lisa
  • Donation Bed – vacant
  • Historical (public pick bed) – vacant


Lindsey is our new grant writer. Please keep your eyes open for any grants that might be beneficial to the RCG and suggest them to Lindsey.

  • Native Plant Council Grant
  • … please contribute your ideas and suggestions.

Volunteer Contribution

We discussed what “volunteer contribution” means to the Renfrew Community Garden. The bylaws were updated to reflect our discussion. In addition, several great thoughts were shared:

  • The RCG welcomes all members.
  • We recognize that everyone has different strengths and abilities and our volunteer opportunities reflect that.
  • Volunteer opportunities are varied in nature and include
    – the physical labour of garden maintenance
    – grant writing
    – membership coordinating
    – social media guru
    – social events coordinating
    – etc
  • Work effort towards recognized garden roles is time contributed to the volunteer requirement.
  • A member is encouraged to speak to the Chair if they have specific volunteer roles in mind at the beginning of the garden season.
  • Finally, we were discussing small group work parties as a new initiative, a way for individuals to catch up on volunteer hours if they’ve been unable to attend scheduled events. These would be unscheduled, more spontaneous but pre-approved work efforts put towards a predetermined task. This would not be independent work but work efforts that are co-supervised, and the volunteer time reported following the work effort.
  • We discussed applying “meetings” as volunteer time, perhaps at half value (1 hour of meeting = 1/2 hour of volunteer work time), but this was not put to vote and not moved at this time. Something to consider for the future.

From Our Bylaws – Key Dates to Remember

The RCG active gardening season begins March 1 and ends on October 31. City water service is a privilege and may not always be available, especially in early spring or late fall.

Elections will be held in October of every year and the new executive committee will take office on November 1.

The full annual RCG membership fee will be due on January 31st of each year for current members to…
• retain their current bed(s).
After January 31st
• unclaimed beds will be returned to the pool.
• current RCG members will be offered additional beds to a maximum of three beds per member.
After January 31st
• all remaining, available beds will be offered to prospective members based on their position on the waiting list.

Changes to the Mission Statement, Bylaws, Registration Form and/or the Rental Agreement may be made with a majority vote of the Executive Committee and may be made at any point through the year.

Meeting Minutes – October 3, 2020

When:  Saturday, Ocotber 3, 2020 from 5:45 PM to 6:00 PM
In Attendance: Mikki, Rebecca, Jon, Heike, Christine, Borden, Rob, Amber, Lisa
Quorum: y

New Business:

The spigot is spraying water. It needs to be replaced immediately. The Renfrew Community Garden has three spigots so they are easy to replace and a new one will be switched in soon.

The spray wands are aging and need to be replaced. The metal one has too much pressure. The plastic one is just worn out. A request was made to replace with an industrial strength spray wand with a gentle flow.

RCG Business Meeting Minutes – June 19, 2020

When:  Friday, June 19, 2020 from 6:40 PM to 7:30 PM

In Attendance: Amber, Christine, Leslie, Heike, Lisa, Mikki,

Quorum: y

Approve Last Meeting Minutes: y


Site & Grounds Managers (Leslie & Corianne):  Generally, everything is in good shape.  Lots of discussion about the sod cutter.

Compost Managers (Rebecca & Jon):
Compost Thermometer has arrived!!

Forest (Lisa):
– our challenges for this summer is grass and weed removal
– see new business for some forest related concerns

Garden Correspondent (Rebecca):  June article about mulch… August article TBA.

Membership (Amber):  The beds are allocated and are in use.  Remember that RCA memberships expire in June so it is our individual responsibility to purchase a new RCA community membership.

Donation Bed (Lisa):  Fully planted with potatoes.

Historical Bed (Mikki):  Planted and may have survived the hail storm.  Radishes, beans, lettuce, carrots, beets, kohlrabi, 2 tomato plants and zucchini!

Chair (Lisa):

Old Business:

Heike’s Barnwood Sign – is it refinished? Not yet.  Tereasa, bought sealant and can do it this weekend.

Compose Bins – Lid brace installation and padlock hasp replacement still outstanding – Tyler.

Waterbarrel – Saddleridge in the NE has our 1000 gallon waterbarrel.  Amber was talking to her in May and they are still using it.

Mini Projects – none requested.

Work Bees – great success!!  Signup model has been working well… up to 8 people earlier on… then level off the number of workers later in the summer as people are going on vacation.

New Business:

SOD CUTTER – The grass is growing over the gravel along the grass/gravel boundaries.  To move the grass back, we can rent a power sod cutter to cut the sod back.  We’d lift the sod off the fabric and then backfill with gravel.  It would create a boundary that looks like a tidy lawn edge along a sidewalk.  This may have to be done every few years.  This is a project that I am proposing for a summer of 2021 work bee.

ACTION:  Add to 2021 RCG Budget so that we have the $$ to do the work if needed.  Review the need to do that work between now and then.  (Budget ends on May 31 and a new budget starts on June 1).

CHERRY TREES – It seems as though only the JULIET Cherry tree is doing well in the forest.  The other three cherry trees are suffering.  I’m guessing that the site is too wet there, particularly in spring.  In an attempt to stay true to the design, we can fill that area with more Juliet Cherries, but in the bush form.  I’d be willing to transplant some from my yard.  This would be a project for Autumn 2020 or Spring 2021, if the members agree.

CAGING BUSHES – the Honeyberry (Haskap) bushes are suffering because of excessive deer browse through the winter.  I think we should fence them for a few years… similarly to the Saskatoon bushes.  This would be a fall 2020 project.  I think we have enough materials currently… possibly some additional wooden stakes would be needed.

STAMP KIT and TAGS – Mikki bought those on behalf with the RCA and is volunteering to stamp our tags!!

COVID-19 Action Plan

At the behest of the City of Calgary Parks Department and the Renfrew Community Association, the Renfrew Community Garden is providing this COVID-19 Action Plan:

While the Renfrew Community Garden is open for business and while the COVID-19 restrictions are in place, gardening members and visitors are expected to follow these requirements:

  • DO NOT attend the garden if you are feeling any symptoms of cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose or sore throat.
  • Bring your own gardening gloves to wear on site.  You may wear your own personal protective equipment (PPE) although it is not a requirement.
  • Bring your own gardening tools.  Multiple touch items such as garden tools have been removed from the storage bin.
  • Respect the physical distancing requirement; maintain a minimum distance of 2m between members and visitors.
  • Respect the (current) maximum mass gathering size of 15 people.
  • Practice good hygiene: wash hands for at least 20 seconds before and after visiting the garden, cover coughs and sneezes, and avoid touching face at the garden.
  • The water tap, hoses, spray wands and the hose reel are available for use.  Members will be required to bring your own disinfectant to the site to clean these items before and after use.  Avoid passing the hose back and forth between other members.  Wear gardening gloves while watering.  We will continue to store the hose on the hose reel in the storage bins when not in use.
  • The Renfrew Community Garden will rely on gardening members to socially monitor themselves and others while visiting the site.  There will be no additional supervision or monitoring of the garden.  If you notice that members or visitors are not respecting these rules, please approach them, welcome them to the garden, and remind them that the rules must be respected.
  • Members and visitors must be aware of their children’s touching and activity at the garden and take measures to avoid touching surfaces including garden beds.

The Renfrew Community Garden is an open site, there are no fences or barriers to limit access to the garden.  However, the garden is very small (only 27 beds) and in a remote corner of the community and regular traffic levels are normally very low.  The open concept of the garden design easily allows people to maintain physical distancing.  For these reasons, we will not impose additional measures to restrict access to the garden site.

All of the above restrictions apply to the use of benches.  For that reason, the Renfrew Community Garden will not close down the benches and picnic table.

The Renfrew Community Garden is located in a remote corner of our neighbourhood and there are no buildings, washrooms or hot water within accessible distance.  Therefore, hand washing stations will be provided during organized Work Bees only.

Work Bees will be limited to 5 people which is organized with a sign-up sheet.

Composting Plan for 2020

The composting plan for 2020 is as follows:

Bin 1: Fill with a 3:1 ratio of brown (carbon) material, and green (nitrogen) material. When this reduces in size by half, or the temperature gets above 160°F, the material will be turned, or moved into the second bin.

Bin 2: This bin will be locked and only used when material from Bin 1 needs to be turned/moved and left to compost further.

Bin 3: This bin will be locked and only used when material from Bin 2 needs to be turned/moved. This will be the final stage and usable compost will come from here.

YES material to add to Bin 1:

  • Fruit and vegetable scraps/leaves
  • Weeds/flowers that have not gone to seed
  • Grass clippings, leaves, straw, shredded newspaper, paper or cardboard

NO material to add to Bin 1, please add these to the city’s green compost bins instead:

  • Weeds/flowers that have gone to seed
  • Large, fibrous material like sunflower stalks and corn cobs
  • Animal waste
  • Household green material including meat, dairy, fat, grease or oil

Compost Managers, Jon and Rebecca, are responsible for monitoring the bin temperatures and moisture level and will add water, turn, and move compost as needed. Materials they need to complete this are a thermometer, pitchfork, rake and shovel.

There is a RCG Compost log that will be updated by the Compost Managers, available for anyone to view here:

There may be a need to collect additional brown material, like leaves and dried grass clippings, to ensure the 3:1 carbon to nitrogen ratio is maintained. This will be addressed as the growing season continues.

Meeting Minutes & Garden Orientation – April 16, 2020

Location: Online ZOOM Meeting
Starting Time: 7:01 PM
Ending Time: 8:20 PM

In attendance:  Kelly, Borden, Christine, Corianne, Crystal, Heike, Jon, Laura, Lindsey, Lesley, Mikki, Rebecca, Tamara, Amber, Darren, Luiza, Tyler, Lisa
Quorum: Yes

Last meeting minutes approved: Yes

Meeting Proceedings

The Garden Orientation began with introductions.  The bylaws were reviewed with a focus on safety, bed maintenance, keeping the isles between the garden beds clear and clean, composting and the volunteer commitment.  Garden roles were reviewed and all members were asked to keep in touch with these managers throughout the season as issues/problems arise.  Managers are not personally responsible to do the work under their purview but to bring the necessary tasks forward to be done at the Work Bees.

Compost Managers – Jon & Rebecca

Rebecca & Jon are going to put together a more detailed compost policy for this season including what can go into the compost, what the rules are for each of the compost bins (1 through 3), and the watering plan/schedule.  We will post the plan on the blog, so keep your eyes peeled for that.

Tyler volunteered to add the LID SUPPORTS to the compost bins 2 & 3 to match bin 1.

Compost bins will need to be watered as per Jon & Rebecca’s plan  –>  this is critical to the success of composting this summer.

Lindsey suggested we buy a compost thermometer.  A compost thermometer has an extremely long probe that reaches into the depths of a compost pile.  The temperature range indicates how active the compost pile is… the target temperature is 120-170F and at that temperature, in perfect conditions, usable compost an be generated in as little as 4 weeks!  Knowing the temperature of your compost heap can help decide what treatments are necessary to improve the conditions for composting.  I

Site & Grounds Managers – Leslie & Corianne

Edible Tree Forest Manager – Lisa

Garden Correspondent – Rebecca

Membership Coordinator – Amber

Chair – Lisa

I want to thank each of these managers for taking on the extra responsibilities!

Because of COVID-19 we can’t meet in large groups… so we can’t meet for a plant & seed exchange.  However, members are welcome to use our social media to safely exchange plants & seeds this spring.

Donation Bed:  Lisa will take on donation bed #1.  Potatoes, carrots and onions are in the plan for food donation.

Historical Bed:  Mikki will take on planting the Historical Bed which will be used for public picking.  Any extra seeds/seedlings would be welcome!

“Heike’s” Sign:  Heike’s sign is the barnwood sign hanging on the north side of the garden.  It needs to be re-sealed.  Any volunteers?  Heike has the sealant you will need.

Rebecca mentioned the “Alberta Native Plant Council” grant for $1000 which I found at  Applications for the 2021 Small Grants Program can be submitted from January 1 to February 28, 2021.

Mini Projects:  Please have a budget and a plan submitted to Lisa before May 1, 2020 if you would like to manage a mini-project at the RCG in the 2020/2021 year.

WORK BEES:  Work Bees are limited to 5 volunteers in order to respect the COVID-19 imperatives.  Please check your email for the link to the sign-up.

No old business.
No new business.


Firstly, we hope all of you, your family and friends are well at this time and wish you all the best in the weeks and months ahead as we navigate our way through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Currently, the Renfrew Community Garden is open.  We encourage and trust our members to respect the COVID-19 guidelines set out for us.  As of today, these requirements are to:

  • respect the physical distancing requirement; maintain a distance of 2m or more between members and visitors
  • respect the (current) maximum gathering size of 15 people (exceeding this limit could result in fines)
  • practice good hygiene: wash hands often for at least 20 seconds, cover coughs and sneezes, and avoid touching face
  • DO NOT attend the garden if you are feeling any symptoms of cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose or sore throat.

In addition, I will ask members to do a little extra each time you visit the garden to keep things looking good, especially if we are unable to hold our scheduled events as planned (any changes to the event calendar will be announced).  Please report any issues requiring maintenance or special attention.

Critically, we will need to have our water service started by the City of Calgary; I’ll let you know when that happens.

Please check in regularly for updates to the RCG status.  Our next scheduled event is April 16, 2020 which is our Garden Orientation & RCG Meeting… but I’ll have to let you know if we will be holding or cancelling this and future events.


Meeting Minutes – February 21, 2020

Location: Renfrew Community Association Hall
Starting Time: 7:01 PM
Ending Time: 7:40 PM

In attendance:  Corianne, Leslie, Billie, Gordon, John, Rebecca, Lisa
Quorum: Yes

Last meeting minutes approved: Yes


Big Thank You to Amber, our Membership Coordinator!!  Amber organized the online payment system with Dennis (RCA Board of Directors) with great success and has been single handedly keeping up with the demand for memberships!

Big Thank You to Rebecca, our Garden Correspondent!  Thank you for all of the articles in the Renfrew Reflections, even through the winter months!  Thank you for keeping the Renfrew Community in the loop with our news and activities!

  • Membership Report – Amber reports that there are 23 beds claimed for summer 2020 and 4 beds available.
  • Garden Correspondent Report – John submitted the report on behalf of Rebecca.
  • Budget Review – The 2019/2020 Annual Maintenance Budget was circulated for review.  This budget expires on May 31, 2020.
  • Bylaws Review – Everyone is encouraged to read their “RCG mission statement bylaws registration rental agreement” and offer any ideas for edits/updates/improvements for the Bylaws review scheduled for October 3, 2020.
  • Summer Schedule Review – The summer schedule is posted at and will be kept up to date through the summer.
  • Volunteer Commitment (5 hours) – Volunteer contributions will be tracked this year, in all fairness to the members who come out to volunteer often.  Members can build their volunteer hours by attending the scheduled Work Bees.

Emerging Interests

A plant/seed exchange will be coordinated for the Garden Orientation scheduled for April 16, 2020.

Garden Roles

The following wonderful gardeners have volunteered to handle the Garden Roles listed below.  They will be responsible for monitoring the status, needed maintenance and issues related to their areas of responsibility.  If the the work is too much to do immediately, they will help to coordinate it for the next Work Bee.

Compost Bin Managers – John & Rebecca

  • Compost Bin Managers are responsible for monitoring the compost bins for required maintenance, watering, mixing, etc.

Site & Grounds Managers – Leslie & Corianne

  • Site & Grounds Managers are responsible for monitoring the entire garden grounds at a high level, gravel maintenance/weeding, garbage, lawn care, etc.

Edible Forest Manager – Lisa

  • The Edible Forest Managers are responsible for monitoring the in-ground beds, weeding, tree care/pruning, deer/hare protection fencing, etc).

Garden Correspondent – Rebecca

Membership Coordinator – Amber

Chair – Lisa

Current Maintenance Issues

Some work is still needed on the compost bins (hinges, new locks, lid supports (so that the lids don’t flop backwards into the tree forest).  This will be coordinated for the first Work Bee.

Donation Bed

The members who attended the meeting voted unanimously in favor of retaining a bed for food donations.  The planting of the bed will be planned and coordinated (so please contact Lisa if you’d like to contribute seeds or seedlings).  The bed will be marked with a sign and then watered and weeded by all of the members throughout the summer.


If anyone would like to take on a small project between June 1, 2020 and May 31, 2021, let Lisa know right away and we’ll work it into the budget.  I will have to submit a budget to the RCA by May 1, 2020 (+/-), so it would help me a lot if you could submit to me a plan and budget by April 1, 2020.

Fall 2019 – Composting Bins Analysis

On November 2, 2019, at our Autumn Cleanup a few of us got together for an ad hoc conversation about the compost bins.  Earlier that day the gardeners had turned the compost.  It was brutally hard work… and after all that, we discovered that at the bottom nothing had composted!

It was determined that the most probable cause of our “failure to compost” was the exposure to prevailing winds.  The compost was simply bone dry.

This is our plan for summer 2020:

Bin 1 – We will keep the compost level to a manageable amount and not allow the compost bin to get too full.  When it gets too full, we’ll lock it.  We will TURN and WATER this pile.

Bin 2 – We will top this bin up with greens all summer.  We will WATER the compost DAILY all summer.  We will NOT turn this pile.  This bin will not be locked.

Bin 3 – We will leave this bin empty until we need it for city compost, etc.  This bin will be locked.

At the end of the summer we will evaluate the success of the composting program at the RCG and see where we go from here.

Meeting Minutes – November 2, 2019

Time:  approximately 10:00 AM to 10:20 AM
Where:  Renfrew Community Garden
Attending:  Leslie, Amber, Sam & Nate, Roxanne & Kevin, Rebecca, Corianne, Kelly, Lindsay, Sean, Tyler, Christine, Lisa

Quorum:  Y

Elections were required to fill the position of Chair for the Renfrew Community Garden.  Lisa Mulder was voted in by acclamation.  Amber will continue doing Memberships.  Thank you Amber!

Discussion followed regarding RCG memberships for spring 2020.  According to the bylaws, existing members have until January 31, 2020 to retain their same raised garden beds.  After January 31, 2020 any unclaimed beds will be available on a first come, first served basis.  A bed is officially claimed when the Registration Form is completed, signed and submitted along with the fees.  A current RCA membership is also required.

Discussion then moved to RCG membership payment methods.  Currently cash or cheques can be made payable to the Renfrew Community Association and delivered to Amber (Membership).  It was suggested that online payments would be excellent for members.  Lisa said she’d bring the suggestion to the RCA Board of Directors.

Garden Committee Meeting – April 25, 2019

Started: 6:30 PM
Ended:  7:30 PM

Attending:  Tyler, Borden, Rob, Keith, Mikki, Dan, Teresa, Jesse, Hieke, Christine, Rebecca, Hugh & Rowan, Amber, Lisa
Quorum:  Yes!

Garden Orientation

  1. Review of the “Renfrew Community Garden Mission Statement, Bylaws, Registration & Bed Rental Agreement”.
    • Our Promise… to be safe, be friendly and keep the garden clean!
    • Focus on the garden as a whole, everyone takes care of everything!
    • Focus on our composting rules.
    • Focus on our our raised beds, please keep them lovely and weed free!
  2. Volunteering Opportunities
    • Garden Mentors – Amber, Jesse, Lisa
    • Membership Coordinator – Amber
    • Public Relations, Social Media & Renfrew Reflections Correspondant – Rebecca
    • Edible Tree Garden – Lisa & Christine
    • Site & Composting Manager – Tyler
  3. Events & Work Bees
    • Garden Orientation & Seed Exchange, April 25, 2019, 6:30 PM (required attendance)
    • Gardening 101 & Mulch Spreading, May 11, 2019, 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM
    • Autumn Cleanup, TBA, (required attendance)
    • Possible Gopher Smoking Out, TBA (possibly late July)
    • Autumn Harvest Potluck, TBA
  4. Introduction to the Spigot
  5. Introduction to the Storage Bin
  6. Communications
    • We use several means of communication.  For this summer we will send our main announcements by email.  Members are welcome to use email as well.  Please be respectful and do not share email addresses with others outside of the RCG membership.  We have a Facebook Page and a Facebook Group.  While the Facebook Page is mostly managed by admin, the Facebook Group is widely used by everyone to post garden photos and boast about your garden produce.  Twitter is another means.
    • However, at the meeting we decided that WhatsApp is the most appropriate way for daily chatter.  This is an easy and free mobile phone app so we’ll try to pull that together before summer.
  7. More on Mentoring
    • Currently we have three garden mentors – Amber, Jesse and Lisa.  All three of us will be at the garden a lot… so ask us questions on site!  We will also meet you by appointment or answer questions on WhatsApp.  We may plan 2 or 3 mentoring sessions as well, where we can meet as a larger group to talk about gardening.  This is a new program at the Renfrew Community Garden, so please let us know what you like, and what we can do to support your gardening efforts this summer!

Other Business

ISSUE:  We have a gopher infestation at the Renfrew Community Garden.  Gophers are extremely destructive, and they carry disease, lice, ticks, and fleas.  They are also known to chew through irrigation lines.  So far they are building tunnels on the east mound and over to raised garden beds 25 & 27.  They are expanding their warren quickly.


I, Lisa, move that the Renfrew Community Garden Management Committee take the following action to deal with our gopher problem:

  • PLAN A: We will deter the gophers using humane methods for two months (May & June). We will harass them until they leave voluntarily using the following methods:
    • Raised Garden Beds
      • Plug holes every time by backfilling with the adjacent soil in the beds.
      • Affected raised bed renters can apply other Chair-pre-approved humane deterrents.
    • Mounds
      • Insert dog and cat doodles, as much as you can, as often as you can, deep into the gopher holes. Mothballs and castor oil are other possibilities.
      • Fill holes with coffee grounds (easy to get at Starbucks or Café Baya Rica) as much as you can, as often as you can.
      • Fill and tightly plug ALL of the holes as often as you can. Gophers can easily dig themselves out… but we want to annoy them as much as possible.
      • Sonic Spikes, ex. Transonic Mole and Gopher Chaser (Home Depot $60 each, we’d need at least 2, emits vibrations and noise, powered by solar panels).
      • Apply any other Chair-pre-approved methods for humanly deterring gophers.
    • PLAN B: If after two months (in July), if the gophers have not vacated the RCG we will employ more aggressive means of deterrents and extermination:
      • Gas Bombs, ex. Giant Destroyer Smoke Bomb/Gasser. This product will suffocate and kill the gophers inside their tunnels.  It may need more than one application to be successful.  The exits are plugged and the toxic gas is released inside the tunnels.
      • Other Chair-pre-approved methods for exterminating gophers.


  • The motion is amended to include calling 311 to help us deal with the gopher infestation in PLAN A.


  • In Favour: 11           PASSED as amended!
  • Apposed: 1
  • Abstain: 0

Meeting Minutes – February 20, 2019

Quorum Reached (min 3): Yes! 9
Meeting Started:         7:02 PM
Meeting Ended:           7:58 PM

Welcome – Heike Pauli & Lisa Mulder

    • New Terms of Reference
    • Finances are blended with RCA officially now
    • Our Golden Pear is infected with Fire Blight and will be cut down in the next few weeks.  It will be replaced at the cost of Plantation Nursery this spring.
    • Membership renewals – there are still some available beds.

Budget for June 1, 2018 to May 31, 2019 approved for $2495 for…

    • Wood Mulch
    • Plant Material
    • Deer Protection
    • Metal Tags for Tree Labelling
    • Water Barrel Maintenance
    • Signage/Bulletin Boards/Painting
    • Hoses
    • Hose Storage
    • Spray Wands/Nozzles
    • Combination Locks

Budget for June 1, 2019 to May 31, 2020 (not written yet, submissions welcome)

DISCUSSION:  The unspent funds be forwarded from last year’s RCG budget (2018-19) to this year’s RCG budget (June 1, 2019 to May 30, 2020).We will accept input for the upcoming RCG budget for the next few weeks… up until the budget has to be submitted to the RCA for approval.

Action Required:

  1. Position Available – Chair
    The floor was opened for nominations.  Amber Parkhill was nominated by Heike Pauli.  Amber accepted the nomination. No other nominations were presented.  Amber Parkhill is declared the new Chair of the Renfrew Community Association by acclamation.  Thank you Amber!
  2. Summer 2020 Fees – keep as they are?
    MOTION: Lisa Mulder moves that the RCG Fees be kept as they are for Summer 2020.
    Seconded by Corianne.
    Approved by unanimous vote.
  3. RCG Bylaws – keep as they are?
    MOTION:  Lisa Mulder moves that the phrase “All mulch (including straw), soil and compost brought into the gardens must be organic.” be changed to “All mulch (including straw), soil and compost brought into the gardens must be food safe and pesticide free”.
    Seconded by Mikki.
    Approved by unanimous vote.
  4. Events – dates/times?  Combine or have as separate events?
    1. Spring Orientation (required attendance)
    2. Gardening 101 Session
    3. Mulch spreading

Discussion revolved around whether the events should be held together or separately.  

    • 7 members preferred several small events versus one large event.
    • 3 members preferred one large event vs several smaller events.

In the end there was general consensus to hold two events, tentatively:

    • Spring Orientation (required attendance) on
      Thursday, April 25, 2019 at 6:30 PM.
    • Gardening 101 + mulch spreading on
      Saturday May 11, 2019 at 9:00 AM.

Other matters

    • Seed Exchange – let’s all use the FaceBook Group “Renfrew Community Garden YYC” to coordinate our seed sharing.
      – Amber has an order going out shortly and is asking if anyone wants to coordinate a seed order with her.
    • Stanley Jones School (SJS) Historical Garden Weeding
      • We want to give first dibs to any SJS group who wants to use it for fundraising.
      • If the school doesn’t want it, Mikki and Corianne said that they’d like to organize the program on behalf of the Renfrew Community Garden and Renfrew Community Association.
    • The Fall Potluck Dinner was suggested.  It was held in 2017, but not in 2018 ( and was missed).
    • Community Cleanup announced for May 25, 2019.

Next Meeting – planned to coordinate with the RCG Spring Orientation Meeting.

Revving Up for SPRING 2019

We are deep into winter!  Our gardens are hibernating under a shallow layer of snow.  Although our gardens are fairly inactive right now, we gardeners are revving up for spring!  What will we plant?  What new strategies will we attempt this year?  What rare variety of tomato will we grow?

First!  To ensure that you have a garden bed at the Renfrew Community Garden, make sure that you contact Heike as soon as possible!  Beds are limited and interest is high so don’t wait another moment.

Second!  Have a plan.  What are you planting this year?  What will your rows look like: long/short, widely space/tight?  Tall plants on the north side of the garden, shorter plants on the south?

Next!  Get out to the nurseries and select some interesting seed packets.  Read the label.  If you’re planning on planting after Victoria Day (when the risk of frost is tolerably low) then plant the seeds in pots the correct number of days ahead based on the time to germination and transplant… if you plant them too early, your kitchen will be overtaken by lanky overgrown seedlings… we’ve all experienced that!  Also, when selecting seeds, check the number of days to harvest… our growing season is only about 110-140 days long (maybe longer as our climate continues to warm) so don’t select varieties that take too long to ripen.  One crazy veg to grow is eggplant!  Did you know that the eggplant is ripe enough to eat at anytime?  The longer you leave it on the vine, the bigger it gets… but you can eat it at any size!

Don’t forget that most fruit trees benefit from pruning during February/March while it’s still cold.  That’ll keep us busy until spring arrives!

Revving up for Spring 2018

It’s already April and we are in the mood to get our hands dirty!  But hey, there’s a foot of snow on the ground still.  This is more than just an annoyance, it’s downright painful!  After a harsh winter we are ready for some warm gentle breezes and green grass!

Our Garden Orientation is this Thursday, April 19, 2018, where Heike will show us the operations of the garden, how to access water and hoses, what our responsibilities are as gardeners here, etc.  We’ll do this despite the inches of snow we’ll still have on site!!

There are also a number of activities happening this spring at the Renfrew Community Garden and at the Renfrew Community Association including Earth Day Celebrations!  Keep your eyes attuned to the Renfrew Community Association FB page for more information on this April 21, 2018 event!

Want to learn how to plant trees? Or just want to help out? Get involved in planting trees and shrubs in our Edible Tree Forest (AKA trilobite swale) this spring.  Dates and times TBA and will be announced with short notice.  Contact us to get on the mailing list and/or monitor the Renfrew Community Garden YYC Facebook group to get the minute by minute updates.

Meeting Minutes – January 26, 2018

Present:  Lisa, Amber & Heike
From 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM


The following financial reports were reviewed and approved for submission to the RCA as soon as possible:

  • 2016-2017  RCA/RCG Financial Reconciliation Report
  • 2017-2018 (to date) RCA/RCG Financial Reconciliation Report
  • 2016-2017 RCG Finance Report
  • 2017-2018 (to date) RCG Financial Report

The 2017 Mission Statement, Bylaws , Registration and Rental Agreement document was reviewed and then amended for the 2018 season.  The amended version was approved to be posted and used for the upcoming 2018 gardening season.  (It has since been posted to this blog).

The 2018 Renfrew Community Garden 2018 Orientation Meeting has been TENTATIVELY set for Thursday, April 19, 2018.  Stay tuned for the actual date.

Stanley Jones School Historical Gardens weeding project – Heike said she’d investigate the membership for interesting in maintaining this amazing opportunity to generate funds for the RCG.

SIGNAGE – Amber said she’d investigate the options for signs at the RCG.  These would be small scale signs identifying public pick beds, donations beds and private beds.  The signs could do so much more as well…

Garden ROLES have been altered for the 2018 as per the bylaws mentioned above.  We are now looking to more formally fill these roles.

Next Meeting:  February 20, 2018.  Stay tuned!

Meeting Minutes – October 25, 2017

Present:  Heike, Samantha, Catherine, Martin, Sierra, Shelley, Lisa
Commenced 7:05 PM, Adjourned 8:05 PM


  • Gratitude to the Compost Council of Canada and the City of Calgary Folks who are currently helping to build our compost bin (and maybe our storage bin)!  What a difference that will make to our garden!  It is expected to be mostly completed before winter officially begins.

Kiwanis Club Update

  • The CHINOOK KIWANIS CLUB is donating $1000 towards the purchase of the benches, picnic table, bike rack.
  • The NORTHMOUNT KIWANIS CLUB will contribute the remaining funds required to purchase the benches, picnic table and bike rack.  They are also contributing a dedication rock that will recognize the Kiwanis Club as a contributor to the RCG.
  • New Concept Landscaping & Contracting Ltd. is contributing the labour and machines needed to install the new features!


  • The RCA Board has asked us to let Corianne know in advance about any meetings we may be planning so that she can schedule them in the RCA calendar. This does not include meetings that we are holding at the Friday Pub Nights (these do not have to be booked).


  • We should move out any edibles from underneath the RCA patio including bonemeal. Does anyone have a place where we can store these?


  • The RCA Board is asking us to prepare a special budget for this coming up spring and summer project expenses. This is good for us because the RCA Board will approve all of our potential expenses in advance (even if they exceed the RCA Financial Policy limits).  This will minimize the hoop jumping next spring when we get back into spending mode!
  • The RCA Board is asking us to prepare an annual maintenance budget that will be attached to the RCA Business Plan which the RCA is currently working on.

Balancing & Closing the Books for 2017

  • We will need to reconcile our 2017 spending and revenue against the following to close the books on this year.
    • Parks Foundation balance
    • RCA RCG Account balance
    • 2017 Membership List

Planning for 2018 – Project

  • We received $1000 from Stanley Jones School for the Historical Garden Weeding project this summer. We must ensure that this money (any gaming money) is spent STRICTLY on AGLC approved items.
  • Ideas – If there is a project or idea that you want to lead and create, please provide a short description of your concept, a list of the materials that you will need to purchase and the approximate cost of each item to the RCG committee co-Chairs, Heike or Lisa.  The deadline for submissions is early February 2018.  We will combine all of the project budgets into one large RCG project budget and submit to the RCA Board at the February Board meeting.
    • Trees, bushes, perennials (Lisa)
    • Metal tags and wire for labelling trees and bushes (Lisa)
    • Stamp set (Lisa)
    • Signage (we need to assemble a list of potential signs and then order/create them)
    • Garden soil to top up beds (Lisa)
    • Compost/manure required to enrich the beds
    • Tree watering bags (about 6) (Lisa)
    • Bunny protection for bushes and trees over winter
    • Micro-library
    • Trellis
    • Bulletin board/Sign
    • Street signs (eg. 8th Ave, Renfrew Crescent)
    • Banners, signs, sandwich boards
    • Compost/Storage Bin accessories/materials (eg. Concrete sidewalk squares)
    • Cinder blocks for the Water Tank
    • Motion Lighting
    • Insect Hotel

At this point, the RCG committee moved and approved the purchase of new garden soil and compost/manure for Spring 2018.  It was generally agreed that the beds need to be topped up.

Planning for 2018 – Annual

Action plan for Winter 2017/2018:

  • Update bylaws
    • When should renewing members pay? (End of October?)
    • When should elections be held? (End of October?)
    • Add a clause that asks members to keep the gravel clean.
    • Pets?
    • Maximum number of beds per member?
    • Other?
  • Elections
  • Advertising for 2018
  • Eduational Seminars
  • Spring Up! for the Renfrew Community Garden Fundraiser (discussed as an option)

RCG Social Media

Now that the Renfrew Community Garden is built and actively growing, we are starting to rely more on social media to relay our day-to-day news and updates.  To participate, this is where to find us:


  • In Twitter, search for @RCAGarden1



Do Not Walk In The Trilobite Swale Please

You won’t believe it!  The trilobite swale is complete.  After digging down 60+ cm in some places and moving over 135,000 pounds of soil to the landfill site… after bringing in 43 yards of garden mix and 32 yards of mulch & spreading it all around by hand… the trilobite swale is complete!

Yesterday we seeded the trilobite swale with Miracle-Gro Flower Magic for the bees, white clover for fixing nitrogen and daikon radish for loosening the heavy soils below!  SO PLEASE ACCESS THE GARDEN USING THE ENTRANCE-WAYS 🙂.  Let’s let the little green things start to grow in peace.

Unloading Soil at the DUMP

We moved over 135,000 lbs of soil from our garden to the dump to create the trilobite swale which will capture rainwater runoff from the park above and distribute it to our edible tree forest!! Each and every load has had to be filled and then emptied by hand… what a labour of love this has been!!

Tree Canada Edible Tree Grant

Hi everyone!  I just found out that we are still in the running for the 2017 Edible Tree Grant offered by Tree Canada!

Tree Canada, if you’re reading this, please select the RCG for the 2017 Edible Tree Grant.  Our “trilobite” is almost ready for all those beautiful fruit trees and bushes!!  We’re super-excited to get those plants in the ground!!

Spring UP!! Fundraiser HUGE SUCCESS!!

Thank you to Samantha and Michelle for their amazing success in organizing the “Spring UP!! for the Renfrew Community Garden” fundraiser party.  Due to their amazing effort, the party raised a good chunk of money towards the opening this spring!!  Please check out the Benefactors tab to view a complete list of community organizations and companies that supported this fundraiser!

Meeting Minutes – March 21, 2017

“Raised Garden Bed” Building Planning Meeting
Attending:  Isabelle, James, Ken, Heike, Lisa
Meeting Commenced 6:05 PM, Adjourned 7:30 PM

Not knowing what the future holds, we tentatively plan to build all 27 beds (minus the number of beds that the Tetra Society will contribute).  This may change in the future depending on our funding status at the time that we need to order lumber.  We will also build the compost bins, storage bin, 2 benches, a sign frame and trellises if all goes well.

Key Dates:

  • Order the lumber and materials for delivery to the garden site on April 21, 2017
  • Build the beds on April 21-22, 2017
  • If additional days are required to complete the building plan for April 29-30, 2017
  • The beds will be stockpiled around the exterior periphery of the garden until they will be placed into their final positions in May.  (The external boundary of the RCG will be laid out on April 22-23, concurrently with bed building.)


  • Volunteers will sign up for four hour shifts.  Email invitations will be sent out to the volunteers with a link to Doodle Polls where they can commit to a shift.  Isabelle will coordinate the invitations.
  • We have volunteers coming from the following organizations…
    • Ward 9 Staff
    • Kiwanis Club
    • Winston Heights Community Garden
    • Airport Authority
    • RCA/Renfrew Community
    • Others?

Raised Garden Bed Build

  • James will coordinate the actual raised garden bed building including
    • finalize the lumber and materials (15″ screws, etc) required
    • order the lumber (from what supplier TBD)
    • have the lumber delivered to the site
    • coordinate and supervise the bed building on site for all shifts
    • finalize the list of tools required and advise on what to borrow or rent (Tool Library?)


  • Heike will coordinate banner, sandwich boards & fliers
  • Kids will deliver fliers to the surrounding homes (around the garden) to let residents know that the build is starting, significant dates, and asking them to be our “Garden Guardians”.

Compost Bins, Storage Bins, Benches, Signs & Trellises

  • Lisa will put together plans for these other garden elements and allocate materials from the East Village donated wood, make a list of any additional materials required and coordinate the order with James.

Stanley Jones School – MATH

SCOTTS MiracleGRO is donating Soil to the Renfrew Community Garden.  But we needed to know how much soil to order.  Stanley Jones School/Alice Jamieson Academy to the rescue!!  Thanks to their amazing geometry skills, we have ordered 43 yards of soil for the project.  Great JOB SJS/AJA!  We really appreciate your help!!


Meeting Minutes – March 13, 2017

Attending:  Heike, Cari, Lisa, Samantha, Ken, Hazel, Manaar and guests Shelley & Sierra (Calgary Eats)

Meeting commenced at 6:05 PM and adjourned at 8:10 PM.

Samantha reports that the “Spring UP! For the Renfrew Community Garden” planned for Friday, March 24, 2017 at 7:00 PM is on track!  Ticket sales are awesome, food donations are coming in from Blush Lane, our local Community Co-op and Boogie Burgers!  There will be beer and burgers (gluten free and vegetarian options are available).  The party planners would like to use the fridge.  The party will not be using the stage if the event is held upstairs.  There is an Insect Condo project for the kids for an extra charge of $5 to cover the costs.

Heike reports that she is waiting to hear back from the Calgary Herald/Sun newspapers regarding the spring gardening insert.  Other candidates to spread the word include the Swerve website, AB Views Magazine, Crossroads Community (to hang a poster), Winston Heights Community (to hang a poster).  We are hanging posters all around town.  Heike phone some lumber suppliers and found that a 12 foot long 4×6 cedar plank costs $50.  Wood order calculations have been done, but needs to be checked over by a third party.

Sierra suggests that the City Palate is a great place to place an ad, but the deadline is 1 month before publications are released.

Lisa reported that she & Cari met with the Kiwanis Club to present the Renfrew Community Garden.  The Kiwanis Club has asked us to present a letter to them outlining what they can do to support the garden, and this letter is in progress.  Grant applications are getting completed like crazy:  2017 Coop Community Spaces Grant, Soul of the City Neighbour Grant, First Calgary Financial Act Local Grant, Tree Canada Edible Tree Grant, Alberta Culture & Tourism Community Initiatives Grants (Alberta Canada 150 Grant and the Project-Based Grant), and others still in progress.  Also this BLOG has been updated with the Raised Garden Bed sizes and rental rates for 2017 under the Registration Form tab.

The group agreed that we would not offer a PRO-RATED rental rate on beds this summer.

Meeting Minutes – February 27, 2017

In attendance: Ken, Hazel, Heike, Lisa, Graeme, James, Sam, Isabelle, Cari, Tyler

Committee members update
The RCG Committee welcomed two new members! Hazel will be our youth liaison with the Stanley Jones School and Graeme joins our committee to help with the grant applications. Welcome to our new members!

Grant update
Still working on several grant applications including the Co-op Community Spaces grant, Alberta-Canada 150 grant and Soul of the City grant.  Edible Tree Grant and First Calgary Financial Grant Applications have been submitted.

Fundraiser update
Spring Up! The fundraiser for the Renfrew Community Garden will be taking place at 7pm on March 24th. $10 ticket includes a beer and a burger (meat or veggie). Live performances by DJ RoyLT and 8 Ball Deluxe, silent auction, 50/50 draw and more! Don’t miss this event and come support your community garden!

Grand opening update
Save the date! The grand opening will take place on June 14th with a morning event with city representatives and an afternoon community. More information will be forthcoming. Keep an eye on our webpage and Facebook page for more details.

Building beds
Tyler coordinated the bed building for the Winston Heights-Mountview Community Garden and attended the meeting to describe the building process for the beds, and share lessons learned and things to avoid.
Meeting adjourned 7:06

2017 Co-op Community Spaces Grant Application Submitted

If you’re reading this Co-op, we ask you to please select the Renfrew Community Garden as a recipient for 2017!!   We would be so excited to partner with you on this project!!
“Co-op Community Spaces has been developed to help protect, beautify and improve spaces across Western Canada. In keeping with our ongoing commitment to invest in the communities we serve, Co-op will contribute up to $2 million to help support projects that improve the places Canadians meet, play, learn and share.”

Thank you to the author of the grant application, Graeme Heath!!


Meeting Minutes – February 13, 2017

Meeting commenced:  6:08pm
In attendance: Lisa, Heike, Ken and Isabelle

Several grant applications are in process, including the Edible Tree Grant, First Calgary Financial grant, and the Alberta Canada 150 grant application. Our newest member, Graeme Heath, Will assist filling the application for the Coop communities spaces grant.

The Kiwanis Club is interested in making a contribution to the RCG. The type of contribution has yet to be determined but could include, for example, a rock landscape feature, bike racks or sitting area. RCG committee members have been invited to give a presentation at Kiwanis on March 1 to present the project.

Grand opening promotion
Heike is developing posters to promote the garden and grand opening. The grand opening will also be promoted on social media, the RCG blog and perhaps the Renfrew Reflections.

Update on gardeners applications/administration
Lisa proposed a motion to edit the bylaws so a $15 deposit is required to get on the waiting list. Motion seconded by Isabelle and unanimously approved. Prorated rates will be posted on the website in the following weeks/months.

Garden building start
Tyler coordinated the bed building for the Winston Heights Community Garden and is willing to share his experiences with us. Tyler will be attending our next meeting on Feb 27th.

The bylaws have been amended as follows.  The phrase “Beds will be rented on a square footage rate, currently $1/sqft. For example, a 5’x12’ bed is 60 sqft and will be rented for $60 for the season.” will be replace with “Beds will be rented on a square footage rate which will be posted at the beginning of each gardening season.”  This motion was moved by Lisa Mulder, seconded and then passed unanimously.

Meeting adjourned 6:59

Meeting Time Change

Hello, please note we have changed our meeting days to every second Monday from 6-7pm.  Next meeting will be February 27. See future dates in the right column of this website. Unfortunately, we are having issues with the times and meetings are NOT from 5-6pm, but from 6-7pm. Thank you and our apologies for the confusion.

Meeting Minutes – Jan.20

Renfrew Community Garden Committee Meeting

Friday, January 20, 2017 6pm

RCA Hall

In Attendance:       Samantha, Ken, Lisa, Heike

Grant Application Review:

Alberta Canada 150 Grant (deadline Feb 15)

Tree to Our Nature (deadline Feb 17)

Edible Trees grant (deadline Feb 24)

Telus Community grant (deadline Mar 1)

Calgary Foundation Community Sould of the City Neighbour grant (deadline Mar 15)

Calgary Foundation Community Grassroots grant (deadline mid-May)

Servus Credit Unition

City of Calgary EVENT grant


Highest Priorities are Alberta Canada 150,Tree to Nature, Grassroots and Soul of City.

Heike to complete Alberta Canada 150.

LOC update – out of our hands. Waiting for City and lawyers to complete, approve and provide to us. Robert Dickenson & Vivian Cantin are our City contacts.

Garden Building start – Lisa, Heike and Lindsay, Adrian and Luke from reGenerate to hold initial meeting. Planning to build ¾ of garden as laid out in reGenerate’s plan. Looking to include PVC piping, stones and mulch to lay down under walkways and Meeting time set for Feb. 1 at 3:30pm.

Water Access at site  – City still needs to install the irrigation lines and spiggot.

Calgary Attendance Center – we booked 12 days with this organization in May, they will be providing man power to help with building of beds,sod removal, benches, compost and storage bins, garden signage, digging of swale and various other duties involved.

Tetra Society could help build fully accessible beds etc, as we are thriving to be a garden accessible to people with disabilities as well. Society is volunteer run and Sam will contact them to see how they work and what they would need.

Opening Ceremony:

To be held in early part of June, date to be set shortly. Sam to talk to Christy at BGCC Aboriginal Yough Program re. their group coming to ceremony.

Once we have date set, we can start inviting groups such as neighbouring gardens, schools, Calhort, RCG Members, Renfrew Residents, Aldermen and office etc. etc.

Membership – We need to finalize raised bed rental fees for summer 2017, look after Renfrew advertising, print and handout application packages, assign beds, gardeners and volunteer orientations etc…

Advertising – posters, Renfrew Reflections, Calhort, Tiwtter, Blog, Facebook, Sandwich Boards and more. Heike to look after posters, Reflections, FB, Sandwich Boards.

RCA Casino – June 8 & 9th – Asking committee members and future gardeners/volunteers to come out and help.

Stanely Jones Historical Garden Weeding – review commitment to garden, formalize agreement with school and create a schedule for the summer. Use sandwich boards for advertising/information during weeding sessions, passerbys will know what we are doing.

Meeting adjourned 7:15pm.

Meeting Minutes – February 3, 2017

Friday, February 3, 2017 6:08pm
In attendance: Lisa, Sam, Ken, James and Isabelle

No updates on the fundraiser, still waiting to confirm a date.

Meeting dates:
Meetings are now being rescheduled for the first and third Mondays of the month. Next meeting will be on February 13th at 6pm.

Meeting with reGenerate:
Heike & Lisa met with regenerate and consulted with them about the plan for the spring. They will be donating their time to come to mark the swale in the Spring and will come once again to lay down the details after the sod is removed and the landscape fabric and gravel are installed.

The planning committee is currently developing a project plan and schedule for the different building phases and activities that will take place in April and May. Contact us if you’re interested in volunteering and helping us build our garden!

Meeting adjourned 7:09pm.

2017 Scotts Miracle-GRO Showcase Garden $15,000 Grant

GREAT NEWS!  The Renfrew Community Garden is the 2017 recipient of the Scotts Miracle-GRO Showcase Garden Grant for $15,000!!  THANK YOU SCOTTS & Communities in Bloom!!  We are so appreciative of this amazing gift!!

What does this mean to the Renfrew Community Garden?  It means that for our SPRING 2017 PROJECT, we’ll have $5000 additional funds to spend on garden beds, etc. PLUS $5000 worth of in-kind donations from SCOTTS Miracle-GRO such as garden soil (for example) which we can purchase in bulk.  Finally, in the fall, SCOTTS will send us another $5000 for SPRING 2018!!

Receiving this grant also means that we are going to have an AMAZING SPRING 2017 Opening Celebration!!  Keep your eyes open for more information about this opening event which will be held in June.

2017 Scotts Miracle-GRO Showcase Garden Grant

On Friday, November 18, 2016, we submitted a grant application for the 2017 Scotts Miracle-GRO Showcase Garden Grant for $15,000.  Wouldn’t this be an amazing opportunity!!

SCOTTS Miracle-GRO, if you are reading this, PLEASE SELECT US!!  We would love to be your winning candidate!!


Meeting Minutes – Friday, October 14, 2016

Renfrew Community Garden Meeting
Friday, October 14, 2016 5:45pm
In attendance: Heike, Lisa, Sam and Isabelle

Grant season is upon us! The garden committee is currently developing an updated application that will now include the design of the garden as well as a description from ReGenerate about the sustainability of the garden. We are aware of the up-and-coming grants:
ChooseWell grant (October 31 due date)
The Calgary Foundation
CIR Realty
Alberta Eco trust grant

The committee also plans to send letters to local organizations asking for small cash contributions.

Design Reveal
The garden design was revealed to the communittee at the Renfrew Volunteer Appreciation Dinner on Sept 31st.
The committee received great feedback from the community and will be posting the design online shortly.

Plans for the Spring
The committee discussed plans for the new year and decided unanimously to start building the garden in Spring 2017. While planning for the garden, the committee will need to consider the following risks:
– Should phase 1 of the garden not include a solid foundation, there could be potential issues with mud accumulation and weeds
– not being able to raise enough money for Phase 1

Action: Lisa will review the design plan and budget to see what could reasonably be included in Phase 1

Planning for a fundraiser BBQ will get underway soon. The event is to take place in early 2017.

Meeting adjourned at 6:55pm

Great news….the waterline was put in at our garden site today…we are excited to have this done…some pictures to show the construction

RCG Meeting Times = 7:30 PM

There is an error in the right panel with meeting times.  The dates are correct but the time is out by an hour because of a bug related to daylight savings time.  I’ll follow up on the issue… but for now, please note that:


Thank you with your patience while we resolve this issue.

Meeting Minutes – September 9, 2016

When: 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM
Where: Renfrew Community Centre Pub
In attendance: Lisa, Heike, Samantha, Ken, Christine and Isabelle

Weeding Days at Stanley Jones School Garden – We’re very pleased to announce the completion of the Renfrew Community Garden/Stanley Jones School Summer Weeding Project!!

There are two amazing outcomes to this project:

· The Stanley Jones School historical gardens have been successfully weeded and maintained through the summer of 2016.
· The Renfrew Community Garden Planning Committee and the Renfrew Community Association have received a $1000 donation toward the Renfrew Community Garden Project.  Thank you to SJS and the PAC for this amazing contribution!

Here are some interesting statistics:
· A total of 74 hours of weeding time contributed over 7 meetings from June through to the end of August.
· 14 community volunteers contributed to the weeding effort.
· Approximately 11 hours were spent on the “Medicinal Garden”.
· Approximately 40 hours were spent on the “Surrounding Communities Garden”.
· Approximately 22 hours were spent on the “Sensory Garden”.
· Approximately 1 hour was spent on the “Gymnasium Forest”.

Kudos to everyone who participated in the weeding parties. The RCG Committee received extremely positive feedback from Stanley Jones School representatives!!  Great Job RCG!!

New materials for the garden! – Thanks to the SCOTTS GRO1000 grant, the RCG Committee was able to purchase materials for the community garden, including a soaker system, a spray nozzle, flower seeds, potting soil, organic fertilizer and organic bone meal.
We also recently received a water storage tank and some building material that were graciously donated by the Inglewood Community Garden and the East Village CG Project. Thank you!

Fundraiser – Samantha proposed to host a Burger&Beers fundraiser this winter, probably in February or March. The event would allow us to raise additional funds for and awareness of the garden. The event could include a raffle or silent auction to raise additional funds. Over the next few months, we will be exploring potential venues and ways to promote the event.  This project would require  a great deal of commitment from all of our members!!

Grant applications – Grant applications season is right around the corner so the Committee will soon be identifying which grants it is planning to apply to, such as the real estate grant and Calgary Foundation grant.

Action items:
– Complete the optional amenities agreement with the city
– Inquire with the Saddledome about potential volunteering/fundraising activities
– Make a sandwich sign to use at future events/weeding parties to bring attention to our work
– Fill application with the city to get orchard trees

RCG Meeting Times = 7:30 PM

There is an error in the right panel with the meeting times.  The dates are correct but the time is out by an hour because of a bug related to daylight savings time.  I’ll follow up on the issue… but for now, please note that:


Thank you with your patients in resolving this issue.

Meeting Minutes from Friday, June 3, 2016

Renfrew Community Garden Meeting

Friday, June 3, 2016 7:30pm

At garden site Edward Street & Phair Ave. NE

In attendance:

Lisa M.            Ken L.                         Hazel M.        

Heike P.         Christine R.               Sven S.          

Aysia S.          Moremi                       Suri M.


Last meeting before Summer.

We opened meeting by planting veggies & flowers in the small garden box moved from community centre a few weeks ago. Symbolic “christening” of garden and we are looking forward to a good harvest this fall.

Monthly Meetings– we are taking a summer break and start up again on Friday, Sept.9 at 7:30pm at the RCA Pub. If our financial situation changes before than, we might call in a meeting sooner.

ReGenerate supplied us with a final garden design and they also provided a cost estimate and plant list with a construction total of $63,443.75 and a project total of $68,603.75. Further details can be provided upon request.

Weeding Days at Stanley Jones School Garden – first date is Wednesday, June 8 at 7pm. Bring own tools, shovel, spade, clippers etc. Heike to send out Doodle invite to general email list on gmail account, to see, if we find further volunteers.

Spoke about possibly setting up a Community Garden table at RCA Bike Day on Sunday, June 4. Unfortunately, no members were available to man the table, had to cancel attendance.

Scotts Miracle Gro $500 Grant – brainstormed on how we best utilize the funds. Group agreed on a storage bin/chest for tools, hoses etc. to be the best investment at this time.

Renfrew Stampede Breakfast – setting up a community garden table from 8:30am til 11:30am. Committee members to man table for shorter 1-hour shifts, or longer, if available. Heike to send out a schedule for volunteers to sign up.

Insurance coverage for volunteers – Volunteers with the community garden do not need to hold an RCA membership, 3rd party liability is completely covered by  the RCA insurance. ·         There is a $25,000 non-negligence “Medical Payment” coverage under the RCA insurance that would cover any medical costs for an injury to a volunteer. The intention of the “Medical Payment” coverage is to cover the cost immediately after injury – first aid, ambulance, etc… so that the injured person can get immediate care, feel cared for (and hopefully not sue us later). As far as self-inflicted injury goes, the RCA volunteers would have to get medical coverage through their own personal insurance.

Waiting to hear whether we won the Coop Community space grant for $25,000. Hoping to hear by mid-June.

Meeting adjourned 8:45pm.

Meeting Minutes – May 6, 2016

When: 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Where: Renfrew Community Centre Picnic Tables
In attendance: Lisa, Heike, Aysia, Samantha, Ken, Carmen (SJS), Julianne (BGCC)
Regrets: Isabelle, Christine

The first half of the meeting was lead by Carmen representing Stanley Jones School who toured us through the SJS gardens.  We are discussing doing volunteer work by weeding the gardens at Stanley Jones School.  In exchange, Stanley Jones School would donate a dollar amount towards the Renfrew Community Garden.  We are currently evaluating this opportunity to ensure that the RCG would be able to complete the amount of work necessary to fulfill our commitment to SJS.

The next grant that we will be applying for this month is another Co-op Community Spaces program.

On April 26, 2016, the RCA (Renfrew Community Association) added another chair to the executive committee to represent the Renfrew Community Garden.  Lisa Mulder was nominated and voted into this new position!

The RCG is planning to move a small raised bed from its current location in front of the RCA buiding to the RCG site behind the ball diamond located on Child Avenue.  Keep your eyes out for that!

We look forward to seeing our final map design drawn by reGenerate Design Ltd on May 9th!!  Keep your eyes open for the formal unveiling (TBA).

This is our second last meeting before summer.  We have one more meeting scheduled for June 3rd, 2016.  If the weather is nice, we’ll meet outside the RCA building at the picnic tables.  Through July and August, we will call meetings if/when necessary.  Otherwise, we will do business via email.  Over the summer, ad hoc meetings will not be held on Fridays.

Meeting Minutes – April 8, 2016

When: 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM
Where: Renfrew Community Centre Pub
In attendance: Lisa, Heike, Isabelle and Christine
Regrets: Sam, Aysia

Update on grants:
So far the Renfrew Community Garden Committee has been awarded $6500, including the $5k coneptual design grant from Calgary parks and the $1500 Scotts GR01000 Grassroots Garden Grant.
Scotts will be sending us a sign to be displayed on the site of the future community garden.
Grant deadlines with the Calgary Foundation are coming up but we will have to wait until we are ready to break ground to apply.The RGC will also consider applying to the Fortis grant.

City contact update:
Vivian Cantin has taken over from Ron Buchan as our City of Calgary Parks Liaison and will be invited to the RCG meeting when reGenerate will present their design.

reGenerate update:
The RCG has met with reGenerate onsite as they had some questions on the budget. They will be designing the project into phases so the garden can grow as we increase our budget over time.
Phase 1 of the project will include only the bare necessities but will leave space for the future phases. It will consider all the features RGC has requested and plan for them over time.
Partial accessibility might be a feature that will be added on down the road.
reGenerate will be submiting 3 draft designs by April 22 and a final design will be selected by May 9

Welcoming newcomers
The RCG wants to increase its engagement with community members and ensure that neighbours feel welcome when they attend our general meetings. RGC will be planning social activities to meet more community members. This may include gorilla gardening meetings (sssh!!).

RGC members brainstorms on potential fundraising activities. These include:
-garden gala
-death by chocolate
-casino night
-chili cook off
-selling Renfrew Rocks! buttons
-Stampede breakfast
-gardening workshops

Meeting adjourned at 8:50

RCA Garden Meeting – May 6, 7:30pm

Hello, next meeting coming up this Friday, May 6, 2016, 7:30pm-9:00pm, at RCA Community Centre.  We will be meeting outside at a picnic table on the 8th avenue side of the building.  We will also be touring the Stanley Jones School Gardens at about 7:30 PM so if you can’t find us at the picnic table, we’ll be over to the west side of the block outside Stanley Jones School.

March 4 – Meeting Minutes (finally! :) )

Renfrew Community Garden Meeting Minutes
> March 4, 2016 7:30pm
> Meeting started 7;35pm
> In attendance:
> Sam G.
> Ken L.
> Heike P.
> Considering applying for the Communities Choose Well Grant (promoting Healthy/Active Living, Eating Well). It’s a seed grant for start up, only available in 2016.
> Event/Workshop held on April 2, Sam is going through work, she would be willing to collect information for us, but can’t really represent our garden, since she is there for her work.
> March 10, 4pm-5:30pm, public meeting with reGeneration Design Ltd., the landscape architects we hired to help with design and implementation of such for our garden layout.  Meeting to be held at RCA Hall, pub downstairs.
> Sam offered to approach home Depot or Rona and ask for in-kind donations, such as lumber etc. Committee to come up with a donation letter we could leave with companies.
> Calhort – more kitchen table talks coming up  in the next few weeks. Check for dates and topics.
> Seedy Saturday coming up March 19, 2016 at Hillhurst Community Centre.
> Fundraiser Party – we tossed around the idea of a party, rent the pub downstairs and sell tickets in advance. Sam has access to a free Keg through a friend, probably a soundsystem and DJ as well. Heike to ask Peter about possible free hall rental during next General Meeting.  Also ask if we would need a liquor license.
> Next meeting April 8, 7:30pm.
> Meeting adjouned 8:30pm.

reGenerate Map Design & Stakeholders Meeting

INVITATION:  On behalf of the Renfrew Community Association and Garden, we would like to invite you to join us to meet with reGenerate Design Ltd. to talk about our future garden conceptual drawings. This is our opportunity to share our thoughts, wishes, dreams, hopes as well as our concerns and limitations concerning the future RENFREW COMMUNITY GARDEN with the architectural firm that will be designing our garden.

WHO:  Everyone interested in the future design of the Renfrew Community Garden
WHEN:   Thursday, March 10, 2016, 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM
WHERE:  Renfrew Community Centre Pub (downstairs)

This is a not-to-be-missed opportunity to get your ideas out there. We look forward to seeing you!!

Meeting Minutes for February 6, 2016

When: 7:40 PM to 8:56 PM
Where: Renfrew Community Centre Pub
In attendance: Lisa, Heike, Aysia, Christine, Ken, Isabelle
Regrets: Sam

Update on grants:
– Parks Foundation Conceptual Drawing Grant (success!)
Great news! The Renfrew Community Garden was recently awarded the Parks Foundation Conceptual Drawing Grant for $5000. The RCG will use this grant to cover the costs of a professional conceptual drawing of the garden’s site. A request for proposals was sent out in early January to 5 local architecture firms. We have since received 3 proposals. After one round of voting, the RCG unanimously selected reGenerate Design, an ecological design-build firm based in Calgary, to design the plan for our garden. Lisa and Heike met with reGenerate on the site of the garden on February 3rd to discuss the garden project. A follow-up stakeholders meeting will be organized in the following weeks to further discuss the site, share ideas, answer questions and voice any concerns. This meeting will hopefully include representatives from the Renfrew Community Garden Planning Committee, City of Calgary, Renfrew Community Association as well as reGenerate.

– Fiskars grant (application submitted, $3500)
Through Project Orange Thumb®, Fiskars awards cash and garden tools to help support community garden goals across North America

– Employee grant (application submitted, $500)

– Calgary CO-OP Community Spaces grant (in process, deadline: February 12, 2016, $25000 – $100000)
Isabelle contacted the program’s contact point who confirmed that the minimum amount for the application is $25,000. Isabelle, Christine and Lisa will be working together on the application.

– Scott’s Miracle-Gro Grassroots (in process, deadline: February 22, 2016, up to $1500)

Assignment of executive positions
The RCG planning committee assigned executive positions to the following members:

Heike – Co-chair and event coordinator
Lisa – Co-chair and Garden team communicator
Christine – Grant coordinator and fundraising
Sam – Treasurer and Gratitude lead
Isabelle – Secretary and Food surplus sharing lead
Aysia – Membership coordinator

Action items for next meeting:
Isabelle will start on the Coop grant application and then circulate to the team before final submission
Christine will start on the Scott’s grant application and then circulate to the team before final submission
Aysia will research open source membership software and present our options at the next meeting.
Everyone will fill out their membership forms!!

Meeting Minutes for January 8, 2016

When:  7:40 PM to 8:50 PM
Where:  Renfrew Community Centre Pub
In attendance:  Aysia, Lisa, Sam, Isabelle
Regrets:  Heike, Christine

Update on grants:
RFP for conceptual architect grant got sent out on January 7th to 5 architects.
Lisa emailed Sara at Parks Foundation to see when they are having their next meeting to bring these grants to the table. Also wanted to see if they have any last minute advice for us and to give them a heads up.
This application has forced us to come to some conclusions on a vision for our garden with regards to a site plan; keep it simple and beautiful.
The phased garden plan is still an option.
Received a prompt email back from one of the architects who will try to get a proposal back to us early next week.
Trying to figure out the best way to organize the memberships… online app?  Aysia suggested checking out this review:
Samantha brought up the question of security and information sharing with external websites.

Action Items for next meeting:
Lisa is going to ask other clubs how they collect dues and keep information at the next kitchen table talks meeting. Lisa is also going to follow up on the conceptual garden plan.
Isabelle is going to follow up on ways we can share food from our garden.
Aysia is going to finish researching open source membership software and come up with a final decision by the next meeting.
Everyone has to fill out their own membership information.
Sam is going to support Christine with grants and funding.
Begin a google doc for basic information for grants.
Lisa and Heike need to bring completed budgets to the next meeting.
We all agreed on a subcommittee that will schedule additional meetings during “grant season” to work with Christine because we want to “NAIL” these grants!!

Meeting Minutes for December 11, 2015

Attending: Heike, Lisa, Isabelle, Christine, Aysia, Remi
Date: Friday, December 11, 2015, 7:34 PM to 8:51 PM
Location: Renfrew Community Centre Pub

Lisa prepared a preliminary project budget for the community garden and used the following components as the basis:
– 16 to 26 beds
– Two bed sizes: 12 feet x 4 feet and 4×4 (4 feet seems to be the ideal width for easy access to the middle of the bed)
– The beds will consist of 5 4×4 stacked cedar posts (approximate height: 18 inches)
– Since the beds will be the skeleton of our garden, we agreed to invest in high-quality materials
– Each bed will cost approximately $565
– Compost bins will cost approximately $300 per bin
Overall, we are expecting to spend between $10-15k to build the garden. While some materials will be provided by the City of Calgary (soil, bike racks, trees, etc), we can also try to find used fences and use tool libraries to reduce our costs. Other materials could also be acquired cheaply through donations or we could ask retailers for discounts. * We will work with RCA and see if it is possible to issue tax receipts for donations.
Lisa mentioned that the approved site for the garden has been reduced so the “Renfrew Community map” design will probably no longer fit. That being said, we will share our designs with the architects and see if they can make it work. It was also noted that garden fences and signs cannot be higher than 4 feet.

Lisa updated the grant letter and included some of the basic guidelines/requirements for the garden. The deadline for applications will be January 15th. We will need at least 3 quotes before we can submit to the Park Foundation. They will then decide whether to award us the grant.
Christine suggested including a statement in the letter about how the garden will represent the community and how we’ll work to integrate a community flavor in the garden.
We will also ask the architects to consider accessibility in their designs.

Heike prepared an annual budget which aims to demonstrate that we have a plan for sustainability. Some items will require a large investment up front (e.g. compost), but costs will decrease over time once we are set up.
The annual budget will help us determine our basic operating costs after capital and also include revenues (fundraising, donations, memberships) as well as assets (how much beds, materials and tools would be worth if we sold them). At this time we couldn’t budget for water so more research is required.

Christine gave an update on her grant research and suggested that we concentrate our efforts on smaller grants as it is more likely that we will be successful in obtaining those. Christine will contact the foundations next week to get more information on the grants and see if we stand a chance.
Grant season is January to March although many grants are available year round or quarterly. We will need a clear budget of capital and annual operations before we can start applying.
Christine also suggested that we include the list of executive committee members and positions as well as a list of garden applications with the grant.

The next meeting will take place on January 8th at 7:30pm.

Meeting Minutes – November 6, 2015

Attending:  Heike, Lisa, Isabelle, Christine, Brianne, Aysia
Date:  Friday, November 6, 2015, 7:31 PM to 9:07 PM
Location:  Renfrew Community Centre Pub

Google Account

  • Lisa has made the Google Account public (set up by Aysia)
  • Key documents have been loaded
  • Lisa suggested we apply read-only to account, ie. budget people have access to the budget, Aysia will find out how.
  • Sign in individually vs. everyone using the admin account.

Food Agencies

  • Lisa suggested seeking out agencies to provide food for (ie. a charity who needs food)
  • Christine suggested food hampers through schools in the community (ie. during Thanksgiving)
  • Lisa found list of organizations of Emergency Food Resources
  • Christine suggested more local, BGCC, Addiction Center, etc

Stanley Jones School (SJS) Gardening

  • Lisa/Heike found out about SJS Heritage Gardens having difficulty maintaining – last year had to pay contractors to maintain the gardens. Volunteer to upkeep possibility.  Only mulch laid for this winter.  Spring cleanup will be required.  School offered to pay us.
  • Need to meet to determine commitment involved, remuneration, etc.
  • Lisa made motion to pursue SJS business relationship, Christine seconded the motion, unanimously decided in favor of pursuing business with SJS
  • We need to know the number of hours they’ll need us, etc before we can commit to the work.

Grant Applications

  • Christine went through the list of grants
  • The RCA is a registered “not-for-profit” organization, and we are under their umbrella.
  • Christine mentioned that we should volunteer for a casino as a part of the RCA
  • Lisa suggested we request a position on the RCA executive committee (and get a tab on the new community website :))
  • Alberta Real Estate Board
    • !! We need a Realtor involved (or involved in the profession – Sam’s BF??)
    • January 26 – May 12
  • Walmart Evergreen  – not available in 2016
  • Christine mentioned Julie as a contact for the Calgary Parks Foundation
  • Need to solidify budget, beginning with architectural costs
  • Seek out corporate sponsorship
  • Christine described cheque writing drive where able to give tax deduction
  • Fortis
    • April 2016
  • in regards to having a bank account, we cannot.  In every way, we function under the budgetary purview of the RCA
  • Field Law
    • know by July 2016
    • no previous awarded funding from them
    • seed funding therefore apply this year
  • Aysia suggested clarifying all our objectives in order to use for all applications
  • Lisa brought forward chart in order to organize grant applications and their specific needs
  • Alberta EcoTrust
  • Scotts Canada
    • need to follow up with phone call to “Vivienne”
  • Fiskars
    • February 2016, for registered charity
  • TD
    • February 2016
    • charity
    • contact regional manager
  • Coop
    • Community Spaces Program
    • April to May 2016
    • Not-for-profit
    • Contact local co-op on 16th?
  • Lisa has a copy of AHS Community Gardens Handbook, pg 57 = funding sources
  • Christine suggested a relationship with the BGCC partnership to work for youth grants, after-school program
  • Heike – Home Depot?
  • Heike suggested delegating responsibilities
  • Conceptual Drawing Grant
    • put in RFP
    • will help in applying for other grants
    • Lisa has list of Architectural Companies
    • fp Architectural in Renfrew connection with Jacquie
    • Christine volunteered to call architects before sending applications (will call next week)
    • need to ask Cari which architects she knows
    • Heike will ask Cari
    • Isabelle suggested architectural schools
  • Isabelle will contact people in food waste area
  • We need to know the regulations on who can accept food
  • Christine suggested maybe not pursuing Eco Trust – a phonecall to see if it is worth it
  • Lisa passed out formal Community Garden Agreements
  • Letter of Municipal Opinion is needed from the City of Calgary for each and every grant application we send
  • RCA has to approve every grant application we send as well
  • We need to persuade RCA that we can expand at a later date (requiring a change to the LOC each time)
  • Lisa will continue to attend RCA meetings, present potential grants that we are applying for to RCA directors
  • We need something to say we are acting under the heading of RCA
  • We need proof of not-for-profit documentation
  • Also fundraising approval

Meeting Minutes for October 2, 2015

Meeting Location:  Renfrew Community Centre Pub
Date/Time:  Friday, October 2, 2015, 7:33 PM to 9:05 PM
Attending:  Heike, Lisa, Aysia, Cari, Christine, Brianna

We began the meeting by reviewing all the news from over the summer:

  • we are still waiting on the final approval of our Community Garden Application from the City of Calgary
  • the waterline is not yet installed on the approved site
  • new trees have been planted along the west side (just outside of the site boundary) and the northeast edge (just inside the site boundary)


We ran into a problem with the map that we submitted to the city with the original community garden application: the space allocated to the garden was too “spread out”.  We became aware of this when we were discussing the “footprint” of the garden with the Renfrew Community Association with regards to the LOC (this is the Letter of Commitment from the RCA defining the future “footprint” or area occupied by the Renfrew Community Garden for insurance and leasing purposes).  The RCA requested that we “minimize” the footprint of the RCG for the purposes of the LOC.  We had to re-work the map.  Lisa proposed a garden plan that simulated the layout of the streets and blocks of Renfrew.  An invitation was submitted for other plans, but the members moved that the proposed garden plan map be adopted immediately.  Christine made the motion, Aysia seconded the motion and the vote was unanimously in favour of adopting this map layout.  Because the map is complicated Lisa is going to pursue the “Conceptual Drawing Grant” offered by the Parks Foundation Calgary.  It offers $5000 towards a professional architect’s rendition of the map.  Lisa will photocopy the map and information for Cari to deliver to two Architects that live in our community!


Christine will research available grants and begin the grant process.  We can all help by sending her ideas and leads.  Aysia will make a big “THERMOMETER” poster to log our fundraising efforts; the target amount is $100,000!  Heike and Christine will look around for financial institutions that can support the RCG with no banking fees.  FIRST CALGARY FINANCIAL was identified as a candidate.  Lisa and Heike will send Christine the grant information that we’ve collected in the past year.


Christine is going to find out about Kitchen Talks and let us know when that’s coming up.  She’ll send out an invitation.


Aysia suggested that we organize a communal online drive such as GOOGLE DRIVE.  We can save our documentation there.  We need to follow up with Craig to get the membership list.  Aysia will follow up with getting our drive setup with access permissions and folders, etc.

October 2, 2015 – Meeting Agenda

Location:  Renfrew Community Association Pub
When:  Friday, October 2, 2015, 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM

What’s going on with the RCG since we last met?


We know that we can’t wait for the City for everything. Let’s move ahead “AS THOUGH” we have the City’s complete approval.


  • Grant Applications
  • Sponsors
  • Events
  • Donations in-kind (rotertiller time, materials, seeds, perennials, etc)

Garden Relations:

  • Mentors
  • Partners

Gardener Registration:

Review Action List!

Parkdale Community Garden Tour – Monday, September 7, 2015

Many grateful thanks to Audrey, Director of the Parkdale Community Garden!  On Monday, September 7, 2015, Audrey hosted Heike and me on an extensive tour of the gardens.  To learn more about the Parkdale Gardens check it out at

Some of the interesting facts that we learned on our tour of the Parkdale Community Garden are:

  • Audrey arranged a “progressive lease” with the community association, something we’ve never heard of and may work well for us!
  • The Parkdale Community Garden is a phased project over many years, starting with a simple circle of beds last summer, a second circle of beds as well as herb gardens and a shed in the second year (this summer), and so much more planned in the years to come.
  • The Parkdale Community Garden has benefitted from a number of funding sources including grants, donations-in-kind and EVENTS such as a Founders Dinner, History Nights, bottle drives and engraved pavers, to name a few.
  • To get where they are today, they’ve needed all the usual Community Garden approvals, an architect’s plan as well as a Development Plan for the shed and an environmental assessment for the in ground vegetable gardens.
  • Audrey’s leadership and a dedicated group of volunteer gardeners have made the Parkdale Community Garden an amazing success – and well worth a good look if you’re in the area.

The Parkdale Gardens are celebrating their “Medieval Fair” themed Grand Opening on Saturday, September 26, 2015 from 2-5 PM and is open to the public.

Parkdale Garden Tour – Monday, September 7, 2015

We have arranged a tour of the Parkdale Gardens.  This is a new community garden located in beautiful Parkdale, Calgary.  Parkdale Garden Director, Audrey Smith will be on hand to give us a tour and answer any of our community garden questions.  For more information about the Parkdale Gardens, check out their website at  Meet us at the RCA for carpooling or alternatively, we can meet up at the Parkdale Garden.

Renfrew Carpool Departure Time (drivers needed!, I can take 4)

WHEN:            MONDAY, September 7, 2015, 5:00 PM (departure time 5:30 PM)

WHERE:         Renfrew Community Centre

Actual Garden Tour Time/Place

WHEN:            MONDAY, September 7, 2015, 6:00 PM

WHERE:         Parkdale Garden, 3512 – 5th Avenue NW


YARDSMART MAKEOVER – looking for candidates in Renfrew!!

Exciting news!! I just found out that the City of Calgary & CALHORT are holding another YARDSMART MAKEOVER and they are looking for candidates!  If you are selected, the City of Calgary and CALHORT will create a beautiful and environmentally friendly garden in your front yard. Some of you may know that our yard was selected last year and now, instead of lawn, I have daffodils, tulips, roses, iris, peony, almond, Saskatoon, currents, cherries and a plethora of other lovely creatures growing. I even have a little forest creek bed! This summer, my yard will be shown in the August 16th CALHORT Open Garden Show. Exciting!!

If you are interested in applying for the Garden Makeover, please feel free to ask me any questions you may have. It was great fun!!


Just a reminder we are holding another cleanup/weeding party in the garden on the 10 Street hill on the West side of the road, just South of the 8 Ave & 10 Street NE intersection (just before going down the hill). I plan to be there even if it rains, so I hope to see you too. The more the merrier! 7:00 – 8:30 PM TONIGHT‼

May 29 Meeting Minutes…..better late than never, right?!

Hello, here are the meeting minutes from our meeting on Friday, May 29, 2015. Sorry that they are being posted soooo late.


RCA Community Garden

Meeting Minutes, Friday, May 29, 2015 7:30pm

In Attendance:

Heike, Lisa, Samantha, Cari, Mary Jane, Chad, Aysia, Christine

Lisa and Heike attended “Meet the Funder” Community Partnerships workshop put on by the City of Calgary on May 27 at the Albert Park/Radisson Heights Community Centre. We had the chance to talk to a few organizations, who are giving out grants. We spoke to Julie Black from The Calgary Foundation about the Grassroots Grants (Stepping Stones and Neighbourhood Grants), to Sara Stepa, Grant Program Coordinator at Parks Foundation about the Conceptual Drawing Grant and Teresa Byrne from Culture, City of Calgary re. the Festival and Events Subsidy Program. We thought we may qualify for the latter, when eventually putting on a community event or vegetable soup cook off in our future garden, but Teresa said that this grant wouldn’t apply to us. Sara Stepa suggested for us to contact a few architectural landscaping/garden design firms, as the Parks Foundation would pay up to $5,000 of an architectural drawing grant. A professional plan would enhance our application and would provide preliminary cost estimates for the project. Sara to email us contact info for a few companies.

Bylaws – Christine emailed changed version to Lisa and Heike. To be printed and included in application package.

Budget – Sam sent back as well. A date should be put on it for record keeping.

Christine attended Kitchen Table Talk on May 27. She came back with some great ideas, one of them for fundraising. Village Brewery gives $1,600 in the first year, if a community garden grows hops for them. Something to consider for us for the future. First Calgary & Coop give out grants as well. Another issue that came up during KT talk is Theft Deterrence in community gardens. Suggestions were fake cameras, motion lights or set up a communal/free plot for folks to take veggies rather than steal from other gardeners’ plots.

Heike and Lisa represented the community garden at the last RCA general meeting on May 26. A motion was moved and seconded that the “Renfrew Community move that the RCA sign a new LOC (License of Occupation) to include the community garden at (address).” The motion was passed pending the following requirements:

  • the exact address of the site
  • the identification of the garden “footprint” (a mapped area)
  • an operational agreement with the City of Calgary Parks regarding mowing, pruning & watering.

Community Survey – Received overwhelming support on day of completion. We have 2 pages of signatures. Left leaflet on how to get a hold of us and how to leave feedback in people’s mailboxes, if they weren’t present. Survey to be included in application package.

Letter of Community Garden Support – we have received from St. Alphonsus School, the RCA Board and Ward 9 City Councillor Gian Carlo Carra.

Heike to update and freshen up Facebook website.

June 12 7pm – 8:30pm. GARDEN POP-UP Cleanup/weeding party at the garden on the hill on 10 Street near 8th Avenue intersection (formerly Zoltan’s Garden). Come and bring gloves, rakes, garbage bags, let’s make this small hill look beautiful again. This is in lieu of our regular committee meeting.

Renfrew Stampede Breakfast July 4, 9am – 12pm. Setting up community garden table. Volunteers to man for 1-hour shifts. So far, we have

8:30am – 9:30am Heike, Christine

9:30am – 10:30am Lisa, Hazel, Sam

10:30am – 11:30am Cari, Heike, Sven

We will have Sam’s awesome “Renfrew Rocks” buttons for sale (fundraiser) and will do a draw. To come up with 3 prizes, maybe flower basket again, veggie basket and something else.

Potential labour for building flower/veggie beds – Drop In centre has a labour program, Calgary Attendance Centre has free labour program, REAP is another program. Might be worth checking into, if we are short on volunteers, once time comes to build beds.

Meeting Adjourned 8:45pm.

RCG Update

What up?

Firstly, the Garden Pop-Up on 10th Street last Friday was flustered by some bad weather, VERY bad weather.  Even I started to feel alarmed when I heard the lightening and thunder crashing overhead earlier in the day.  Never-the-less, a few of us stout-hearted gardeners made it out and many tonnes of grass and weeds were carted off (OK, “tonnes” might be an exaggeration!).  Anyhow, there is still a lot of work to do there so let’s plan another POP-UP or two over the summer and fall.  And if you ever overwhelmed by an urge to weed, the 10th street garden is there for you, anytime.  If you live closer to the Renfrew Community School, I’m quite sure that if you flash your sought-after “Renfrew Community Gardener” credentials, the school would be delighted if you’re caught weeding the Historical Gardens.

You’ll notice that the Friday, June 26, 2015 RCG meeting notification has disappeared.  Please note that this meeting is cancelled.  We’ll post the next meeting date based on when we receive approval of our City of Calgary community garden application!!  So EXCITING!!!

However, we will see you at the Renfrew Stampede Breakfast!!  Renfrew Stampede Breakfast promises an awesome breakfast plus an unqualified fun time socializing with friends and fellow gardeners.  The Renfrew Community Garden will have an information table set up to spread the word of our great progress this year.  Volunteers are welcome!  Email Heike at to volunteer.

POP-UP Gardening Event

Well, the weather outside is frightful… but to the garden it’s so-o-o-o delightful…

It may be raining, but I know that won’t deter us.  Let’s get on our gardening gloves and get dirty!  On the bright side, the soil will be softer and easier to weed.  So I’ll see you out there… as per the schedule on the right-hand panel of this blog posting.  See a few postings down for the details on the time and location.

POP-UP Gardening Event – Please Attend!!

WHERE:     on 10 Street, just north of Drury Avenue, NE
WHEN:     Friday, June 12, 2015, 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM-ish

10 Street, just north of Drury Avenue NE is an interesting little spot in our neighborhood.  If I remember correctly, the City was maintaining this derelict, hillside area for many years until the community started guerrilla gardening there.  Now, it’s a lush garden in need of a little lovin’.  Let’s all meetup for a little POP-UP GARDENING!!

Bring your gardening gloves, spades, rakes, garbage bags, buckets and whatever else you can think up.


April 17 Meeting Minutes

Hello there, a little late, but here are the minutes from our last meeting, which was our last “all nighter” meeting. We reviewed our bylaws and budget (to be posted soon). Hope to see you at our next meeting (May 1, 7:30pm, RCA pub).

RCA Community Garden Committee

Meeting Minutes, Friday, April 7:30pm

Attendees:         Lisa Mulder Co-Chair                      Kathryn Chin – City of Calgary

Heike Pauli – Co-chair                    Samantha Grabinsky

Christine Riddell                               Sarah Ward

  1. Presentation – Kathryn Chin – Neighbourwoods Program

Renfrew has been chosen to take part in program.

Usually 10 communities per year, due to snowstorm increase to 30 communities in 2015.

1 tree costs Cad$30, which includes Education Session, Waterbag, Bag of Mulch and Urban Forestry to come and dig a hole. Type of trees are typically ash, aspen, hawthorn crabapple, oak and elms, but City hasn’t decided on the kind yet. They are around 6ft tall, 10 gallon waterbag and the purchaser is required to commit to watering tree for at least 5 years. Urban Forestry will do pruning.

Lynne Engelman, our RCA President, is the volunteer lead on this program and application deadline is May 7.

Kathryn will ask City about whether they can provide orchard trees for the orchard as part of our community garden. She isn’t sure, if she will get an answer or not.

Regal Park Condominiums came up, property lost a number of trees during the snowstorm last fall. Kathryn to check and Christine, whose husband is on the RP board, will check into it.

  1. Review Bylaws

Bylaws were formulated at last meeting, March 20. They were reviewed tonight and revisions were made in regards to accessibility of garden and the beds to members with disabilities, the fee structure to include more details on number of beds a household can rent and a potential fee sliding scale. In addition, members needing to take on garden roles are asking to choose the top 3. Bylaws and map have been approved for inclusion in minutes and posting on blog.

  1. Draft Budget

A budget was put together based on 1 bed made out of untreated wood or cedar costing app. $300, size 8’ x 12”. Phase 1 to include 16 beds, Phase 2 to add an additional 15 beds, various sizes. Beds, tools, garbage containers, storage sheds, garden sign, bike rack, tools etc. to cost app. $10,000.  A more detailed and better laid out draft budget to be posted on our blog soon.  Priority for this year is to get bed build and set up. Heavy fundraising needs to be involved.

  1. Fundraising options

Looking to set up a table at RCA Stampede Breakfast on Juy 4, same as last year, and make neighbourhood more aware of our community garden. Considering doing fundraising again, still need to discuss a plan for that. Also planning on asking RCA board on whether part of casino money in the fall could be allocated to garden, we could look into providing volunteers. In addition, maybe monthly bottle drive could go to garden committee, if we man the drive.

  1. Next Meeting Friday, May 1, 7:30pm

Should not be a long meeting. Reviewing application to date. Assign roles to members for application (e.g. Secretary, Photographer, Community Liaison etc. ).

  1. Presence at RCA general meetings and AGM

Heike and/or Lisa to be present at the community garden committee at the monthly meetings and AGM, give members an update and strengthen ties with board.

Meeting adjourned 9:52pm.


We are proud to post the map of the Renfrew Community Garden which we designed at one of our recent ALL-NIGHTERS.  Thanks to all who attended that meeting!  This map is DRAFT.  We are planning to send it to the City of Calgary as part of our Community Garden application in the next few weeks.

RCG Meeting Minutes

When:  Friday, March 21, 2015, 7:30 PM to 10:30 PM
Where:  Renfrew Community Association Pub
Attending:  Christine, Lisa, Julie, Mary Jane, Rob, Aysia, Gina and Thomas

Wow, I have to apologize for everyone for falling behind on the meeting minutes. There was SO much going on in March that I nearly lost my footing!  But seriously, the highlight is definitely the progress of the RENFREW COMMUNITY GARDEN!!  We are so close to completing our application to the City of Calgary.  So far we have a Garden Map Layout and the “Mission Statement, Bylaws, Registration Form & Agreement” document done.  Next week, Friday April 21, 2015, we’ll have our final ALL-NIGHTER to decide a BUDGET.  Following the completion of the budget there are a few other items to follow up on and then we’ll submit the application.  City Parks has told me that this part of the approval is fairly fast so… fingers crossed!!

I am just so pleased with the community participation through the process of building this application… Thanks to everyone who have come out to participate!!


RCG Meeting Minutes

When:  Friday, March 7, 2015, 7:30 PM to 10:30 PM
Where:  Renfrew Community Association Pub
Attending:  Heike, Lisa, Christine, Mary Jane, Remi, Mandy, Gabby, Julie, Grant

Great work was done on the design of our garden!  We have a truly unique plan in store (map to be revealed at a later date).  Suffice it to say that this mapped plan incorporates most, if not all of our brainstormed ideas.  Exciting!!

We also discussed phasing-in our garden (to prepare for growth) as follows:

  • PHASE 0 – Sign + a small demonstration garden on site
  • PHASE I – Approximately 16 beds, approximately 5×12 feet (60 sqft)
  • PHASE II – Approximately 16  more beds, approximately 5×12 feet (60 sqft)
  • FUTURE PHASES as needed.

In addition to the brainstorming ideas in the last post, the following ideas were discussed: herb garden, pallet garden, cold frame, benches/picnic tables, rain barrels.

At the next meeting we will be laying out our garden’s BYLAWS.  The bylaws will describe our culture, rules and guidelines so they are an important step in the development of the Renfrew Community Garden.  See you there!!

  • Friday, March 20, 2015, 7:30 PM to close—-> ALL NIGHTER – PLANNING SESSION, RCA pub

RCG Meeting Minutes

When:  Friday, February 20, 2015, 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM
Where:  Renfrew Community Association Pub
Attending:  Heike, Lisa, Christine, Mary Jane, Samantha

The objective of the meeting were three:

  • Review the requirements of the Renfrew Community Garden Application to the City of Calgary,
  • Plan the ALL-NIGHTERS, and
  • Brainstorm ideas for our Renfrew Community Garden.

The requirements of the Application to the City of Calgary are:

  • Map
  • Bylaws
  • Budget
  • Insurance/Lease
  • Survey of Neighborhood Support
  • Letters of Support
  • Membership List with Roles

The next three meetings are “ALL-NIGHTERS” and by that, we mean that we’ll put in a few extra hours to get the job done.  If you have examples of maps, bylaws or budgets for the community garden, please bring them along.  The committee agreed to layout the All-Nighters as follows:

  • March 6, 2015 – MAP
  • March 20, 2015 – BYLAWS
  • April 17, 2015 – BUDGET

Following that, we had a brainstorming session to get some ideas out onto paper.  Here is what we created:

Brainstorming! Brainstorming!

RCG Survey of Neighborhood Support Complete!!

We are excited to report that we have completed the Survey of Neighborhood Support (February 7, 2015), a major part of the final application to the City of Calgary.  Heike and I are very pleased to announce that we found overwhelming neighborhood support for the community garden at the Edward Street location.  Thank you to Mary Jane and Christina for helping us get this survey done in minus 10 degree weather.  Job well done!!  And thank you to our new friends and neighbors along Child Avenue, Edward Street, Phair Avenue and surrounding area.  We really appreciate your support!!


Hey everyone – we’re kicking into high gear starting with the Survey of Neighborhood Support and we need your help.  To participate please contact Heike at

WHAT:  Survey of Neighborhood Support

WHEN:  Saturday, February 7, 2015, 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM

WHERE TO MEET:  We will muster at the RCG site (weather dependent, check the blog before you leave to confirm)

We will survey the residents that live within the “line-of-sight” of the proposed Renfrew Community Garden.  The survey will ask residents if they support the proposed Renfrew Community Garden.  We will split into groups to cover the area quickly.  Each group will carry the survey sheet, a map and a bunch of leaflets to leave when doors aren’t answered.

Meeting Minutes for Thursday, January 29, 2015

Meeting started at 7:30 PM and adjourned at 8:30 PM.

In attendance:  Heike, Lisa, Christine

Agenda Item 1:  Renfrew Community Garden Application Package

Now that the Renfrew Community Garden site is approved by the City of Calgary Parks department, we are eligible to submit the Renfrew Community Garden Application Package.  This package must include a detailed map, garden bylaws, a budget, a membership list, letters of community support, the lease & insurance agreement with the Renfrew Community Association and the Gardener’s Rental Agreement/Application Form.  Our objective is to complete this application package for submission early enough to turn soil in our new garden by June 1, 2015.  To accomplish this goal we have scheduled meetings and activities for the next 5 months.  Some of these meetings will be “ALL NIGHTERS” so that we can efficiently complete the application requirements.  This is when we need our full membership to come together and really make this a community effort!!  We also acknowledge the possibility of a fall start-up, but either way, we will maintain this schedule to the best of our ability.

Agenda Item 2:  Renfrew Community Garden Community Survey

A survey of the surrounding community is required for the application package.  Before Christmas, Heike and Lisa walked the perimeter of the community garden to determine the survey area which we outlined  on a map.  We will survey the homes that fall inside of this “line of sight”.  The survey will ask residents if they support the proposed Renfrew Community Garden.  As noted below, the survey will be conducted on Saturday, February 7, 2015 at 10:00 AM with the meeting place to be announced as the date approaches.  We will carry the survey form (in a tabular format), a map outlining the garden location and a leaflet to leave in the mailbox if the resident isn’t home to answer the door.  We will work in pairs for safety.

Agenda Item 3:  Insurance/Lease Agreement

The insurance and lease agreement with the Renfrew Community Association must be submitted with the application package.  On Tuesday, January 27, 2015, Heike and Lisa attended the Renfrew Community Association monthly meeting.  There, with the help of AJ Matsune, City of Calgary Community Liaison, we reviewed the requirements of the insurance & lease agreement.  We will continue to work with the RCA and AJ Matsune to complete this process.

Agenda Item 4:  Meeting Schedule

If we are targeting a spring 2015 start-up, we would have to submit the application package to the city no later than April 20, 2015 hoping to get approval by June 1, 2015.  To accommodate this schedule we are planning the following meetings:

  • Saturday, February 7, 2015, 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM —-> Survey of Neighborhood Support, Line-of-Sight Survey, we will muster at the RCG site (check the blog before you leave to confirm)
  • Friday, February 20, 2015, 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM —-> Planning Committee Meeting, RCA pub
  • Friday, March 6, 2015, 7:30 PM to close—-> ALL NIGHTER – PLANNING SESSION, RCA pub
  • Friday, March 20, 2015, 7:30 PM to close—-> ALL NIGHTER – PLANNING SESSION, RCA pub
  • Friday, April 17, 2015, 7:30 PM to close—-> ALL NIGHTER – PLANNING SESSION, RCA pub
  • Friday, May 1, 2015, 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM —-> Planning Committee Meeting, RCA pub
  • Friday, May 29, 2015, 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM —-> Planning Committee Meeting, RCA pub
  • Friday, June 12, 2015, 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM —-> Planning Committee Meeting, RCA pub
  • Friday, June 26, 2015, 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM —-> Planning Committee Meeting, RCA pub

After we submit the application package to the City for approval, we will have about a month to plan a spring start-up.  For a September start-up, we will have about four months to plan.

Agenda Item 4:  Assigned Tasks

Lisa will update the blog with this meeting minutes and calendar dates, update the blog with the CALHORT dates, prepare materials for the survey including the survey, map and flyer, and connect Christine with Chris and any other community garden contacts that she has.

Heike will contact the Renfrew Community Garden Planning Committee members to update everyone on the meeting dates, the community survey date, the all-nighters.

Christine, our wonderful new member (WELCOME CHRISTINE!!) will research other community gardens and their bylaws in preparation for our next meeting.

Agenda Item 5:  Agenda for our next meeting

Our next meeting will set us up for the subsequent ALL-NIGHTERS.  We’ll decide on how the all-nighters will work and what our goals are.  We will spend some time brainstorming ideas for our garden that we can implement at our ALL-NIGHTERS.  See you there!!

Site Approval Received!!

Good News!  The site located on Edward Street is approved by the City of Calgary Parks department!!  This means that we can begin the application process!!  Keep your eyes open for a RCG committee meeting announcement – coming up soon!!

There are a number of inquiries we have to make before finalizing an application for submission such as:

  • There is an irrigation service adjacent to our site, where we’d like to access water for our garden.  How will we manage water access?  Will a meter be installed?
  • How do we conduct a “Survey for Neighborhood Support”?
  • Does the City of Calgary have example budgets and applications that we can use as examples?
  • How are we going to manage insurance?

We are working with the City and the Renfrew Community Association on these questions… and hoping to get the ball rolling quickly… April is just around the corner when you think about it!!

If you are interested in more information about the Community Garden Application Process please check out this link:


Renfrew Site Boundary

Renfrew Stampede Day – More Photos

The Renfrew Stampede Day on July 5, 2014 was a great hit!
Here are a few more photos to enjoy.  Thanks Samantha for sending these along!!

RCG Booth & Sign

Above:  Samantha and Heike showing off Heike’s garden sign – looks fabulous!!

First, Second, Third

Above:  Heike, Hazel and Lisa showing off the prizes.  First prize – Rain Barrel donated by Kathy G.  Second prize – Vegetable Planter donated by Heike P.  Third prize – Hanging Flowers donated by Heike P.

Drawing for Prizes

Above:  Zuri, Hazel, Lisa and Heike pulling out the winning names.

I just can’t say it enough – THANKS TO ALL WHO PARTICIPATED, VOLUNTEERED, BOUGHT/SOLD RAFFLE TICKETS OR JUST HUNG OUT WITH US!!  It was a great day.  Special thanks to Heike who organized the Renfrew Community Garden presence at Renfrew Stampede Day AND who donated two out of the three prizes!!  Thanks to Kathy G. who donated the Rain Barrel!!  And thanks again to Samantha for the photographs.

Successful Stampede Breakfast July 5/Draw Winners

Hello Fellow Gardening Enthusiasts,

Last Saturday, we had a great day at the annual Renfrew Community Stampede Breakfast, with a long line of hungry neighbours and guests waiting to be served eggs, pancakes and sausages. The community and the wonderful volunteers have outdone themselves again and I feel fortunate to be part of this great neighbourhood….

The Community Garden committee had a table set up and we had a few volunteers donating their time to update inquiring folks about our garden. Unfortunately, the City is experiencing backlog in the departments helping with the approval, so, we still don’t have an approved location. We will keep going strong and are confident that we will be planting in spring of 2015. Thank you to our great volunteers, Sam, Mary Jane, Lisa, Hazel and Zuri for manning the table and selling Raffle tickets.
Another Thank You goes out to go out to the Raffle supporters/ticket buyers, which was part of our fundraising efforts. $172 was raised and this amount will go towards purchase of material for garden beds etc. Congratulations to our winners Stella D. – 1st prize, Rainbarrel, Brian K. for 2nd and 3rd prize, veggie box and hanging plant basket (yes, he legitimately won twice 🙂 )
Last but not least, Thank you to the Renfrew Community Association, the Board of Directors and the volunteer coordinators (Kathy G. to name just one) for letting us be part of the event and help with various logistics etc.

Heike Pauli & Lisa Mulder
Renfrew Community Garden Committee


Veggiebox Draw Gardenersatwork

Renfrew Stampede Day Raffle

The Renfrew Community Garden is proud to announce that we will be holding raffle at RENFREW STAMPEDE DAY, Saturday, July 5, 2014 at the Renfrew Community Centre.  Kathy Graham has generously donated a beautiful new Rain Barrel with accessories (hose & spigot) worth $70 that will be raffled off to the winning ticket.  Thank You Kathy!!

Renfrew Stampede Day – July 5, 2014 – Volunteers Needed!

Wow, it’s summer!  It doesn’t seem like that long ago when we were shoveling snow!!

So what’s up with the Renfrew Community Garden?  We are still waiting to get approval on the site so that we can submit an application.  Heike and I are getting ready to Occupy City Hall to get things happening, but we are trying to be patient.

Meanwhile, RENFREW STAMPEDE DAY is just around the corner, Saturday, July 5, 2014.  And the Renfrew Community Garden will be there!!  We plan to set up an information table and sell raffle tickets for a prize.  GARDENERS!  We are looking for volunteers to stand behind the table and share information about our Renfrew Community Garden, and/or to sell raffle tickets.  It’s a great way to meet & greet all your neighbors and friends and to encourage participation in this amazing community garden movement.

  • 1 hour commitment (flexible)
  • table open from 9:00 AM to noon

Please contact Heike to volunteer (find her email address under the Contacts tab of this site).

June 5th Meeting CANCELLED!!

We are cancelling the Renfrew Community Garden meeting that was planned for this evening, June 5th, at 7:00 PM at the Edward Street site.  My apologies for cancelling this meeting at short notice.  It was our hope that we’d have approval to proceed on the Edward Street location by today, but we haven’t heard back from Parks yet!

There are two items on our current agenda:

  1. When we do get approval from Parks to proceed on the application package we will have an AMAZING meeting on the Edward Street site.  We can start really asking – for real!! – :  How do we want to layout our garden?  Where do we want the central feature?  Where will our sign go?  Where will we put the raspberries?  Do we want rhubarb? How will we proceed with the line-of-sight survey, etc. We can really get the wheels turning.
  2. We want to setup an information table at the Renfrew Stampede Day event on July 5, 2014.  Save the date !!  If you’d like to volunteer for this event, please contact and let her know.

So please continue to check out this site for meeting dates.  We will schedule the next meeting after we hear from Parks regarding the package and I will keep the blog up to date with any new information.

Next Meeting – Thursday, June 5, 2014

When: Thursday, June 5, 2014, 7:00 PM
Where: Edward Street Site
Bring: Lawn chair, blanket, beverage

We hope to have some results from Ron, our City Parks Community Garden Liaison by then.  Hopefully, he’ll have completed the Phase I Environmental Site Assessment and confirmed the availability of the irrigation line.  If both these criteria work out in our favor, Ron will approve the site for our application.  Once Ron has given the green thumbs up signal, we are officially sanctioned to submit our application package.  See you there.