Since 2000 the
Brunswick Community Garden
has been located on Brunswick Street next to
the Sixth Street Historic Railroad Embankment
in Jersey City, NJ.
We are grateful for the city’s
which makes this garden, a wonderful community asset, possible.
We are dedicated to maintaining
an open green space in this urban environment.
We support all aspects of community food,
urban forestry and ornamental gardening.
Thanks to a lot of hard work and sweat by garden members throughout the years, our lot has blossomed into a flowering,
food-producing focal point of pride for the entire neighborhood.
The space currently hosts around 90 members each season,
including three local schools, with communal flower beds,
community plots, a community potted herb garden,
forty-four personnel plots, two beehives, seven feral cats,
a fully operational composting system and
the space is a designated Wildlife Area.
The garden is open to the public approximately 20 hours
each week, from mid March through the end of October.
Some thoughts from Dave Hurtle, the gardens' veteran Member ...
"I got there the year after the lease was terminated because one of the directors wanted out and decided to be petty and ruin it for everyone.
The City padlocked the gate right away and had a buyer in the works within the week or two it took to straighten out the mess. The other members fought City Hall and were able to retain the lease.
Zach Feris was the director when I started and I think he was one of the original directors. Zach's wife got a job in DC so they had to move. Melissa O'Brian and Laura Gosa took over after that.
I'm not sure what was there right before the garden but I've heard the land was a stable and a coal storage lot in the distant past.
When I got there, the only plots were in the middle and they weren't all being used. No waiting list at all. My plot and the other two by the clear shed were the first expansion plots. The dramatic increase in interest didn't start until around 2008. Since those first 3, all the plots on both sides and the ones in the back have been added.
As you know the original soil was contaminated with lead (from the turnpike not the railroad) so all of it has been replaced. There was an attempt at lead remediation with sunflowers a few years back. It's a designated wildlife habitat, presumably because of the butterfly garden. There are the cats and the bees and the compost. There are peaches and figs too.
They dredged the Hudson to get the fill to lay the embankment.
The oyster shells found all over the garden are from that.
Every park and community garden has dedicated volunteers that put alot of time into the community. I'm just one of them."