Congregational UCC—Buena Vista in Full Bloom

We are delighted to share the below update from Congregational UCC—Buena Vista on their “In the Mud” Community Garden project!

This is a good time to remind our churches that the RMC is currently accepting “In the Mud” applications until August 17. If your church has exciting ideas on how to better its community, make sure to apply!


Officially named the Jim Close Memorial Garden after a CUCC member that recently passed away and who was an avid gardener during his life, the community garden at CUCC in Buena Vista is thriving. Despite a dearth of rain (and the learning curve that comes with any new project), the garden has sprung to life with both vegetables and carefully chosen flowering plants to serve as natural insecticides.

Of our plots, 16 of the 24 are being used with approximately 16 individuals taking part. Most of the plots are being used by CUCC congregants, but there are at least two outside community members involved.

Two things we’ve learned this first season are how to best manage watering, and that we need a bin available for compost. But, the deer fence is working well, and the sign on the main gate is very attractive. It’s been encouraging to have the gardeners bring their issues and suggestions to the church’s attention so that, together, we can make the garden even better.

In fact, one of the gardeners organized a meeting of the group to discuss whatever was on their mind in relation to the garden. Having them take ownership of this project was something unanticipated and highly gratifying! We believe that as we continue to advertise the garden—and as word-of-mouth spreads—we will have greater community involvement in coming seasons.

Again, we whole-heartedly acknowledge that we couldn’t have done this without the support of the Conference. Thank you, RMC! And now, here are some pictures of the fruits (or rather veggies an flowers) of our labors of love!

— Excitedly, Judy Hassell (Garden Chair), Nancy Best (CUCC Communications) and Rev. Rebecca K. Poos, Senior Pastor of CUCC.