Greenhouse is open

February 24, 2017

By Arlene Medder, former UNC Employee Forum Delegate

For quite a few years, Claire Lorch, manager of the North Carolina Botanical Garden’s Carolina Campus Community Garden (CCCG), wished for a greenhouse. A greenhouse would provide an opportunity to propagate a greater number and variety of plants based on cultural preferences and disease resistance, and she could involve volunteers in that process.

Distributing mature tomato plants is a CCCG tradition greatly appreciated by the Garden’s primary recipients, UNC housekeepers.  With a greenhouse, they can expand beyond tomatoes to other easy-to-grow vegetables that can be grown in containers or in a garden.  It is another way the CCCG can assist in providing nutritional food and encouraging healthy eating habits.

Thanks to funds from the student organization Renewable Energy Special Projects Committee (RECPC), a partnership with NC State School of Design faculty and students, and the efforts of architects and builders from Szostak Design, two solar consultants and others, her wish is now granted.  Construction of the greenhouse began in the summer of 2016.

The greenhouse, recently completed, will be in production very soon. CCCG will host a ribbon-cutting/reception/tour on April 21st. All those who contributed to this effort will attend and the public is invited to join in the celebration.

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Staff celebrate Earth Day in the Carolina Campus Community Garden

April 25, 2016



Last week, 33 eager volunteers (including several staff members in honor of Earth Day) turned compost pilesmodified a pea trellis for tomatoes, built a new trellis and planted cucumbers. Volunteers planted purslane for a chemistry research project next spring with Professor Eskew’s APPLES students. Volunteers harvested 35 pounds of spinach, lettuce, kale, Swiss chard, turnips, radishes, strawberries, mint, cilantro and parsley that were distributed to 18 appreciative third shift housekeepers early.

Photograph courtesy of Claire Lorch.



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Community garden yields 1,300 pounds of produce this summer

July 28, 2015

The Carolina Campus Community Garden is bursting with fresh produce this summer. The long days of sunlight and warmth mean more growth and more to harvest. Summer also means fewer students on campus to volunteer. However, this summer new staff members regularly attend the weekday volunteer workdays. Their presence and hard work has made a huge difference in the workload.

Claire Lorch, director of the garden, extends her gratitude to the hardworking volunteers who have not let soaring temperatures keep them away. One volunteer stops at the Weaver Street in Southern Village to pick up a generous donation of food scraps for the compost piles on her way to attend the Wednesday workdays.

The current garden crops include a variety of tomatoes, mostly Big Beef and Sun Golds; an assortment of peppers; Japanese eggplant; Zephyr summer squash; yard long beans; that Southern staple, okra; Italian and Thai basil; sweet potatoes; purslane; watermelon and green beans. Some of these are ready for harvest now and some of them are still ripening. So far 340 pounds of tomatoes have been harvested, and over 1,300 pounds of food have been distributed to staff in the housekeeping department since June 1.

For more information about the garden or to receive garden updates, please contact Claire Lorch at The garden’s website is and the garden itself is located at 236 Wilson Street, which is off Cameron Street between Pittsboro Street and Ransom Street. If you leave campus, pass the Carolina Inn on Cameron and turn left on Wilson Street, you will not have to go very far before you see it.


Story contributed by Arlene Medder, Employee Forum delegate and Administrative Support Associate in Auxiliary Services.

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Staff celebrate Earth Day in the garden

April 29, 2015
Alex Faulkenbury, Program Associate at World View, works in the Campus Community Garden. Photograph courtesy of UNC News.


By Arlene Medder, Division 6 delegate

Sixteen staff volunteers attended the Earth Day workday on Wednesday, April 22. Some had never heard of the Carolina Campus Community Garden before the Employee Forum invited them to attend the workday. Staff volunteers from across the campus and departments as varied as Worldview, Biostatistics and Campus Health worked on building bamboo trellises, turning compost, weeding, clearing beds and harvesting. It was a warm, sunny day with clouds and cooling breezes.

In addition to the volunteers, several people stopped by to take a look. One woman, the mother of a Carolina graduate student, asked questions about the garden workdays. The University Gazette and the Office of Communications sent staff photographers and journalists to document the activities.

Read the University Gazette’s coverage of the event: Community garden grows campus together

If you are interested in joining the Carolina Community Garden workdays, please contact Claire Lorch at or visit the garden’s website.

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Carolina Campus Community Garden announces spring workshops

February 25, 2015

gardenBy Arlene Medder, Employee Forum delegate

As part of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill community, the garden also has education as part of its mission. One method is to hold workshops.

The first workshop of the new year was held on February 22, 2015, with a full list of attendees. It was taught by Greta Lee, a certified permaculture instructor, and Claire Lorch, the CCCG garden educator. The workshop covered what vegetables to plant for a spring garden, when to start planting, as well as protecting plants from freezing and getting more harvest from a small growing space. There were twenty-one participants, most of whom were new, or fairly new, to gardening.

A composting workshop will be held on Wednesday, March 18th from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Carolina Campus Community Garden. It’s a free workshop and will cover composting food scraps, what to compost, and what not to. It will be taught by Muriel Williman, the Orange County waste management educator. She will also demonstrate the ease of starting vermicomposting, or worm composting. The class will be held rain or shine so people should dress appropriately.

Another workshop in March will be on growing shiitake mushrooms. It is also free. This is a hands-on workshop, preparing eight logs for the Carolina Campus Community Garden. Aaron Moody, a geology professor who grows mushrooms on the side will be leading. It is scheduled for Sunday, March 22, 2015 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the Carolina Campus Community Garden, with March 29th scheduled as the rain date. No experience is necessary and children are welcome. Participants also get to sample shiitake mushroom dishes. It is requested that if you have one, to bring a charged cordless drill, bit size 5/16 or 8mm.

There will also be family-oriented workshops on honey bees. Anne Cabell, one of the CCCG’s beekeepers, will be giving a tour of the honey beehive on Sunday, April 19, 2015 from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. and again on Sunday June 7, from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. If it rains, it will be rescheduled to Saturday June 20th. The workshop is free and will take place at the honey beehives at the Carolina Campus Community Garden. Bees are responsible for pollinating approximately a third of the world’s food as well as producing one of the sweetest treats.

For more information please contact Claire Lorch at More information about the garden can be found at .

Photograph courtesy of Clare Lorch.

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CCCG Looking for Summer Intern

March 25, 2013

Carolina Campus Community Garden Summer Intern


  • Interest/experience in gardening, agriculture, and environmental sustainability
  • Desire to work with college and high school students, faculty, staff, and local community members
  • Positive view of team work and community building
  • Comfortable mentoring other student and nonstudent volunteers at the Garden
  • Willing and able to work outside during  weather conditions of summer on a daily basis
  • Must be flexible with changing schedules and responsibilities (duties may include: fundraising, social media, and volunteer coordinating)

Preference given to those who volunteer at the garden before submitting their application

Responsibilities include:

  • Assist with the maintenance of the Garden  on a day to day basis
  • Develop and implement a specific summer project (to be determined) based on skills and interest of intern and needs of the garden
  • Attend regular Garden workdays held Sundays from 3 -5 and Wednesdays from 4-6 carrying out a variety of garden tasks that might also include mentoring and instructing other volunteers
  • Assist with produce distributions and cooking demonstrations held once or twice weekly at 6:00 a.m., 7:30 a.m. 111:15 a.m. or 5:30 p.m
  • Participate in individual meetings with the garden manager and monthly advisory board meetings
  • Assist in the  pick up and deliver of compost to the garden from nearby restaurant coffee shop and/or Whole Foods grocery store
  • Hours will vary from 6-12 hours per week with responsibilities both at the garden and on own time (hours are negotiable) but can be somewhat flexible to accommodate a part-time job
  • Assist in the training of new interns for the following academic year (if available)

If you are interested in this position (or if you have any questions) please send in the hiring application and a copy of your resume to Claire Lorch at

For more general inquiries about the garden, please visit our website at

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Carolina Community Garden Work Day Invitation

March 12, 2013

Message from the Carolina Community Garden:

Thanks to some wonderful weather and the generous spirit of five high school students, seven neighbors and other community members and three UNC students, we were able to get quite a lot done this past Sunday. Beds were cleared and prepared for spring plantings, garden debris was chopped up and added to the compost that with considerable effort was turned, several varieties of pepper, eggplant, basil and okra seeds were started in flats and 44 pounds of collards, kale, Savoy cabbage, two varieties of spinach, salad greens, chard and pea shoots were harvested and distributed to 26 very gracious first-shift housekeepers this morning.

We will be back in the garden on Wednesday from 3:00 – 5:00, primarily focused on preparing more beds for some serious planting on Sunday.

We will also be at the Work Well Live Well Expo tomorrow over at the Rams Head Recreational Center from 11:00 – 2:00 raffling off some CCCG t-shirts and offering samples of some sweet potato bread. Please stop by and say hello!

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Do You Like to Garden?

September 6, 2011

Come work with us at the Carolina Campus Community Garden!

The Carolina Campus Community Garden is a year-round garden on the corner of Wilson St. and Cameron Ave. The harvest is currently enjoyed by staff members from UNC Facilities Services.

Volunteers are needed to help maintain the garden. Workdays are Wednesdays from 4-6pm and Sundays from 3-5pm. Employees may use their community service leave to work at the Garden, with their supervisor’s approval.

Donations designated for the Carolina Campus Community Garden are being made, and Garden Coordinator, Claire Lorch, states that much more is needed in order to make the Garden a sustainable enterprise. Funding priorities are staffing, as well as garden supplies, plants, seeds and other materials. To make a donation to the Carolina Campus Community Garden go to or look for the donation box at the garden workdays.

If you would like to receive notices about Garden workdays and other exciting Garden workshops, please contact Claire Lorch at

CCCG Accessible Beds Flyer

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