Nimmo Community Garden Plot Rules

Modified: April 10, 2023

Start of Season

  1. Plots must be worked (cleared of cover crop, tilled/turned, composted and prepared for planting) by the annually established Prep Day (normally mid-March). Date depends on compost timing.
  2. Plots must be planted within two weeks of the annually scheduled Opening Day (normally third week in April).
  3. No permanent changes can be made to the plot, such as adding watering system, raised beds or structures without permission from the Advisory Group.
  4. Planting any trees, shrubs or bushes require advance approval. This includes non-herbaceous plant material that does not die to the ground every winter.
  5. Plants must be contained to plot interior so pathways stay clear. Plant at least 1 foot away from plot perimeter to maintain pathways during the growing season. (Depending on what you plant this may need to be more)
  6. Be mindful of placing tall crops (such as sunflowers, okra and corn) and structures so they will not shade a neighbor’s plot.
  7. Restrictions: do not plant invasive plants in the ground. Invasive plants quickly spread outside of their normal range. They quickly take over their environment and spread. Once established, they are difficult to remove. Examples: all Mints, Lemon Balm, Bee Balm, Oregano. If you want them in your plot, they must be contained in a pot that is then sunk in the ground.
  8. Marijuana plants can not be grown at the community garden. (It is illegal to have them publicly viewable.)

Soil Amendments/Remediation:

  • Mushroom compost is included in plot fee. Compost should be applied 3-4 weeks before planting. It is locally sourced usually from Jack Frost Landscape Center or Four Seasons.
  • No non-organic herbicides or pesticides allowed. Nimmo Garden follows organic practices to be good stewards of God’s earth. Let us know what fertilizers if any you would like to use.

Maintenance Expectations

  1. Plots must be worked regularly and kept in good order. This means weeded (both plot, plot border and surrounding pavers) and harvested. We ask you to commit to tending it at least once per week (5 hours minimum).
  2. Plots must be mulched to prevent weeds. Wheat straw is included in the plot fee. No landscape fabric in the plots. Weeds grow up through it making it difficult to remove, and it damages tillers.
  3. Paved pathway around your plot is your responsibility. Remove weeds carefully by hand; no herbicide or scraping pavers as it will damage them.
  4. Diseased plants must be pulled, bagged and disposed of. They can be placed in Giving Garden trash can only if there is space, otherwise take home.
  5. Weeds and debris must be removed immediately. If there is space, put in the commercial compost containers near Giving Garden. If containers are full, then bag and remove from site.
  6. Participate in weeding work groups throughout the season to help keep common areas and pathways clear.
  7.  Water is available from several water spigots and hoses throughout the Community Garden, and from the rain barrel near the sheds. When finished, turn water off and roll up hose at the faucet. Take care when moving the hose to not damage neighboring plots. Water carefully so you don’t water neighbor’s plot or waste water. Report all leaks as soon as possible to the Advisory Group at
    Follow the community gardens hose etiquette.
  8. If you cannot tend your plot for a period of time, find someone to care for it in your absence. Advise the Advisory Group how long you will be away and provide contact information for who will care for it.

Plot Expectations Not Met

  1. If a plot is not worked appropriately by the given deadline (Prep Day, Opening Day or Clean-Up Day) or if a plot is not kept in good order, you will receive an email.
  2. If the problem is not addressed within 7 days, you will receive an email warning giving you 7 additional days to resolve the issue with a reminder of the consequences.
  3. If you do not resolve the problem by the end of the warning period and give no good reason, you may be told you must forfeit the plot
  4. If the plot has not been planted and can be reassigned, you may be refunded the plot fee.
  5. The decision to revoke a plot and whether or not to refund a fee is made by the Garden Coordinator and the Advisory Group.

End of Season

  1. Plots must be cleaned up by the annually scheduled Clean-Up Day (normally mid-October). This includes removing and bagging all plant and non-plant materials (string, wire, wood, metal and garden decorations) so we can till. All debris must be removed from the garden and church grounds and disposed of by the plot holder.
  2. This timing enables planting of a cover crop for winter (seed provided by the Advisory Group.) Returning plot holders must have a plan for covering plot to prevent weeds over the winter.
  3. The exception to this clean-up requirement is for winter gardening. You must discuss winter gardening plans in advance with the Garden Coordinator or the Advisory Group.
  4. If a structure is left in place by Clean-up Day, you must pay the following year’s rent at that time.
  5. Plot holders that do not plan to return still must clear the plot and remove all structures.

Plot Holder Relations – Love Your Neighbor

  1. Do not touch or modify another person’s plot without their express permission. This includes harvesting ripe produce.
  2. Communicate with neighboring plot holders to work out borders, weed and plant size issues. Be mindful of placing tall crops (such as sunflowers, okra and corn) and structures so they will not shade another plot.
  3. Help each other with watering and harvesting when you will be away.
  4. Share extra produce with the Nimmo Garden Food Pantry. Drop off at Giving Garden when work groups are in session or contact
  5. Share extra flowers with the Blessing Ministry, which delivers bouquets to people each month. Contact Carol at


  1. Please supervise children in the garden so they do not damage plants in other plots. Children can visit the Giving Garden with parent supervision. Keep children away from General Booth Boulevard as it is a busy street. Be respectful and stay out of the church cemetery.
  2. Keep your cell phone with you at all times. There have been injuries and potential heat stroke situations where people were alone and did not have phones handy.
  3. Smoking and chewing tobacco are not allowed because they can transmit a lethal virus to tomatoes and have toxins.
  4. Only garden during daylight hours. Consider gardening in pairs.
  5. If you bring your furry friend to the garden, please remember Virginia Beach laws apply. Keep dogs leashed and under your control at all times; keep them out of other people’s plots. Pick up waste to prevent potential plant disease from dog feces.
  6. Report all damage, broken equipment, water problems, vandalism or unusual activities immediately to the Advisory Group (