City of Gering helps support community garden

October 24, 2018

GERING — As Carole Knaub with the Community Ever Green House in Gering knows, gardening is always a work in progress. On Monday, the city council approved some funding to help continue the work.

Council members authorized spending $14,000 from its keno fund to have a 200-foot, 5-foot wide sidewalk poured on the south side of the greenhouse, located next to the Gering Armory.

“The sidewalk will feature a wooden arbor that will have star lace and clematis growing on it,” Knaub said. “It will also have three benches and solar pole lights. When someone sits at one of the benches, straight across will be a flowerbed that will bloom at different times so people can enjoy something throughout the growing season.”

Other work continues at the Community Ever Green House as well. Work crews from the county detention center are finishing up the raised vegetable beds on the north side. Along with wide walkways, they will give easier access to people that may have difficulty reaching down to dirt level.

The City of Gering has regularly supported the Community Ever Green House as a place where people can get their hands dirty while enjoying the fruits of their labor.

Knaub said the greenhouse is a nonprofit organization under the umbrella of the Oregon Trail Community Foundation.

Many groups have volunteered to help out at the greenhouse, such as the National Guard that had members remove the broken concrete around the building. The local bankers association also showed up to volunteer, finishing up the day with a barbecue.

High school art classes have decorated many of the fence pickets around the greenhouse and the shop classes have built tool sheds and other outbuildings. The greenhouse has even been the subject of a couple of Eagle Scout projects.

“AARP has also been a huge supporter of the greenhouse,” Knaub said. “Every year they come and plant seeds for the donation garden. Last year we donated 825 pounds of produce to food banks and this year it was more than 1,000 pounds.”

She said lots of people are starting to take notice of the greenhouse. Because it’s located near the Oregon Trail Park ballfield where the Western Nebraska Pioneers play, many of them also stop in to look around.

“With all the improvements we’ve been making, people are starting to take notice,” she said. “That means lots more people are getting involved with our project.”

Darrell Bentley, who has chaired Gering’s Keno Committee since its formation, said the city’s support of the greenhouse goes for a good purpose.

“We support 5K runs and other special projects, but the greenhouse is something that will continue to go on,” Bentley said. “It’s also good for our senior citizens who may not have a place where they can grow their own garden. This is a good service for everyone.”