Twice a week throughout the semester, Shelby Booth ’13 dedicated her time, energy and skills to improving and expanding the Geneva Community Center Garden. As a result, she and Geneva Community Center Master Gardener Steve Wyckoff have better prepared the garden for next year’s Boys and Girls Club garden program.
Since its creation two years ago, the garden has been a space for Boys and Girls Club members to take part in a healthy activity while learning about gardening. Booth and Wyckoff built two raised vegetable beds, a new crop enclosure for vine crops to be planted in the spring, and a deer-resistant fence around the garden.
The Boys and Girls Club members meet at the garden each week from April to October to do an activity with guests from HWS, the New York State Ag Station and the greater-Geneva community. Other community programs and members zealously use the garden as well, making it a staple for the area.
Booth has experience in both carpentry and gardening from helping her family plant and harvest their garden at her home in West Virginia. Volunteering at the garden has helped to improve her skills.
“While Shelby did not begin this project with much experience with power tools, over the past two months she has learned how to operate a band saw, a circular saw and a radial arm saw, as well as becoming very familiar with the use a cordless drill and fence staples,” notes Wyckoff.
As an architecture student, Booth was also able to help Wyckoff design the garden enclosure. “I hope to one day be a landscape architect so this was a great opportunity to not only volunteer in the Geneva community, but to gain experience in the field,” says Booth, who is also an environmental studies and art history minor.
Wyckoff and the program members at the Geneva Community Center are grateful for Booth’s work thus far and are excited for her continued efforts in the spring. “I look forward to her assistance next spring, when she uses her new skills to teach the club members how to build trellises for this area,” explains Wyckoff.
Booth also looks forward to continuing her work at the garden and hopes to keep contributing to the Geneva Community Center while gaining new experiences of her own.