Custom Garden Solutions (CGS) are Urban Farmers. We grow herbs and vegetables in yards of the homes in the communities we serve. Your garden is one of a network of gardens that make up the whole of Custom Garden Solutions.
We are looking for the right people as much as we are looking for the right location. We have many yards to choose from so we are looking for not only the right location (sun, soil, surroundings) but the right people to interact with. We will both know pretty quickly when we meet if the “vibe” is right and if we can become friends and form a partnership.
In return for the use of your land, Custom Garden Solutions offers the following.
Custom Garden Solutions will maintain a working garden in your yard, lot or plot. This garden may consist of common vegetables, herbs and flowers. You may have one or many different crops growing on your property at any one time.
Custom Garden Solutions Landowners will receive a basket of organic produce weekly, once harvesting begins. An e-mail will be sent to you at the beginning of each week with a list of items available. Please have your order in by Wednesday morning, as that’s when we start to do our weekly harvesting. Your box will be available for pick up Saturday after 10AM. Though nothing in farming is guaranteed, the size of the box may vary from season to season. On average the box will have a value of $20, with the size being smaller in the spring and larger in the summer and fall.
Custom Garden Solutions promises to use organic and sustainable farming practices.
Maintenance times of the garden on your property: Because we’re managing multiple plots, we ask for some flexibility on the times that we visit. In most cases, we will be there anytime between 8 A.M. and 6 P.M. On some occasions, we may need to work late, in which case we’ll call ahead to make sure that it’s alright to visit at a later or earlier time. In these cases, it’s usually quiet work like harvesting or weeding, not running any machinery.
Custom Garden Solutions requires the use of your water. We will take every opportunity to reduce the amount of water used. We practice water conservation techniques for gardening. Please make a copy of your monthly water utility bill for the months of April thru October and send us a copy. On average, our water usage is barely noticeable, as it doesn’t usually exceed your allowed usage. However, in some cases during the months of July and August, there can be a slight difference. In this case, we’re happy to compensate you for the difference.
If there is any instance that would prevent Custom Garden Solutions from farming successfully on the plot, Custom Garden Solutions reserves the right to leave the site before the end of the season. For example - an invasive weed that becomes too difficult to manage, neighborhood issues or consistent vandalism to the garden.
Most maintenance work in your yard will be completed with simple hand tools such as hoes, shovels, scissors, knives, wheel hoes, seeders and other common manually operated garden tools. However, from time to time, Custom Garden Solutions will need to operate a rear tine rototiller in your yard. We ask that the landowner verify that there are no utility lines near where we'll be rototilling. Check this by calling Julie (in Illinois) 800-892-0123 or Arizona Blue Stake (in Arizona) 602-263-1100. It's a free service, and the department will notify all necessary utilities that you want them to mark your underground utility lines.
Custom Garden Solutions asks that the landowner not pick their own vegetables from the garden. If there is a particular vegetable you are interested in, tell us. We'll do our best to get it for you. The vegetables we grow are our livelihood. We depend on harvesting and selling as much as we can.
Custom Garden Solutions promises to grow only legal crops on the property (for example, no psychotropic substances, no marijuana).
Custom Garden Solutions will keep the area where we work tidy and free of any hazards. Should you notice any problems, let us know and we will make sure to correct the situation. At the end of each season Custom Garden Solutions will leave the yard, lot or plot tidy and free of debris.
Custom Garden Solutions asks for a three-year commitment from the landowner, as there is a great deal of work that goes into planning each garden. We hope you will continue working with us season after season. However, if you choose not to continue on with us and need us to stop utilizing your property for any other reason, we ask that we be allowed to finish out the current season.
Our Land Partners will be helping the Urban Farming movement, positively impacting the environment, adding to the local job market, helping to make fresh nutritious vegetables available to the community and generally doing good stuff! We are a local small business, we value the community, we appreciate our partners and we look forward to our partnership.