Alabaster Community Garden gets started


You could say this is a "field of dreams" for Robert Webb. {}For 20 years now, he knew, if he built it, they would come.{}"It started as a place for me to do a garden because I don't have one at home. I started helping a guy in Birmingham Fountain Heights Garden and said if they can do it up there, I can do it down here."It's now the city of Alabaster's Community Garden. It's in Limestone Park off Highway 31. There 32 plots, each 20'x20', that people can rent for $100 a year. {}So far, 16 individuals and families have bought in."My dad grew a garden," says Stephanie Gray, "and he had fresh vegetables for the family growing up. S0 that's what I'm hoping to provide for my family."The city of Alabaster donated about two-acres and installed water lines- for these community "farmers" to grow fruit, vegetables, and flowers."You kind of get away from the electronics and the computer," says Ande Underwood, who brought his son out to work on their plot. "It kind of gets you into some conversation while you work."In addition to the rented plots, Manna Charities has a garden here, too, a much larger section that will grow food to help the ministry feed the needy.{}"Everything that comes out of that garden goes directly to Manna," Webb tells us. "Anything that is surplus in these gardens, we give that to Manna."It's an experience that is both educational, and in the end, hopefully very rewarding for all involved..Most of these people have never met anybody else that's in the garden. Some of them are friends, but for the most part, they're meeting new people in the garden. Just kind of getting the community together."