Kingston Resident Shares Success Story – "Leave it on the Lawn, Kingston!"

By Rebecca Martin

Several years back, my friend and comrade (and longtime city of Kingston resident) Kate Lawson helped me to get  the “Leave it on the Lawn, Kingston!” campaign underway.

Kate lives in a beautiful spot out in Wilbur and every year has more leaves than anyone I know. For this reason alone, I always appreciate sharing her yearly success story with other Kingstonians who might feel mulching isn’t a good solution to managing leaves in the fall.

Here are helpful links to composting leaves and other yard waste material. Have fun out there.

“Leave it on the Lawn, Kingston!” Sponsored by the Kingston Land Trust and City of Kingston.

#1: Leave it on the Lawn, Kingston! Mulching Leaves

#2: Leave it on the Lawn, Kingston! Composting Yard Waste


First pass with the mower/mulcher.

Blowing in more leaves from the perimeter.

Second pass.

Finished! Mowed and fertilized. No raking, bagging or hauling.

"The Dig Kids" Program in the Times Herald Record

In an effort to help provide the youth of Kingston an opportunity to learn important farming skills for a small stipend, “The Dig Kids” – an Urban Farming project sponsored by the Kingston Land Trust (and made possible through a grant by the Columbia Foundation) – was featured in the Times Herald Record this morning.

The fall clean-up in celebration of “Kids Care Week” sponsored by Generation On! was a great success.

Follow this LINK for more.

The Everett Hodge Children’s Garden Clean-up a Success

Cucumbers from 2010!

By Rebecca Martin

The Kingston Land Trust successfully organized a fall garden clean-up at the Everett Hodge Center this afternoon in celebration of Kids Care Week (sponsored by Generation On!).   The youth were introduced to one of our upcoming programs called “The Dig Kids” which will be led by Farmer Jesica Clark (formerly of Phillies Bridge Farm).  The KLT, in collaboration with Kingston Cares and the Everett Hodge Center will work with up to 3 youth in 2011 to farm the Everett Hodge Children’s Garden location and the center’s property for a small stipend.  It is our aim to help the kids make their “farm” the most beautiful spot in town while giving them new skills, healthy  foods for healthy eating and outdoor activity.

The Kingston Land Trust’s program “The Dig Kids” was made possible by a grant from the Columbia Foundation.  Be on the look out for a press release in the coming months.

The kids got to work at 5:15pm sharp and finished in only 45 minutes! They enjoyed apple cider and a ‘breakfast for dinner’ event at the Hodge following the clean-up.

A thorough piece will be in the Sunday Times Herald Record for more detail.

If you or someone you know has a child or young adult between the ages of 7-21 who would be interested in the KLT “The Dig Kids”  program, please contact Rebecca Martin, Executive Director at 845/877-LAND (5263) or email

The Everett Hodge Children's Garden


Getting Started

Taming the wild!

Taking out trees, and now there's lots of room to farm!

This eight year old was the star helper.

Working together.

Finishing up and ready for Spring!

Kingston Care's Meghan Weiss helps the youngest volunteer, 4 3/4 year old Charlie Grenadier. Special thanks to Gerald Berke for the mums!

YMCA Community Garden Closes for Season

By Arthur Zaczkiewicz

Thanks to Ed Blouin of the NYC DEP office here in Kingston for leading and launching the YMCA Community Garden this year with support from the YMCA, the Kingston Land Trust, and the City of Kingston Parks and Recreation Department. Bolstered by volunteers from the DEP as well as several residents, Ed helped nurture a garden that produced a few hundred pounds of tomatoes (including a heirloom variety pictured here), lettuce, herbs, kale and Swiss chard – the bulk of which found its way to area soup kitchens, including the Queen’s Galley.

This past weekend, the garden was put to bed, which included removing vines and seeded crops and then covering the raised bed with mulch supplied by the City of Kingston.

Ed will be the site steward for the garden next year. The garden will continue in 2011 with a children’s garden as well as expand with additional plots for community members. Contact Ed at to learn more. The site is located behind the YMCA on Broadway and is superb in regard to sunlight (no trees!), soil (the raised beds were enriched with horse manure), and water (a water spigot is located on site).

The Mt. Zion African-American Burial Ground Receives New Signage

Thanks to the Kingston Veterans Association, the Mt. Zion African-American Burial Ground on South Wall Street now has new signage.

The Kingston Land Trust’s Black History Committee is working to create a re-dedication of the site in 2011.  For more information on this site, and other important African-American historic aspects in the City of Kingston, visit this LINK.

FALL UPDATE: 2010 City Hall Victory Garden Season

The Kingston Land Trust is pleased to have been a partner for a second year  at the organic vegetable garden located on the grounds of Kingston’s City Hall.  Thanks to City Hall Garden Manager (and Farmer) Jesica Clark and the many volunteers who did a terrific job this season.

As always, a very special thanks to Mayor James Sottile, the City of Kingston’s Clerks office and the janitorial staff who helped to make 2010 a success.  We look forward to our continued collaboration in 2011 and beyond.

Below is a brief note from Jesica to share the year’s harvest news. Join her on November 6th when she will plant Garlic and retire the garden for the 2010 season.

Warm Regards,

Rebecca Martin
Executive Director
The Kingston Land Trust

“The Kingston city hall garden thrived this year with mixed crops grown in a square foot garden plan. The big successes were the sugar snap peas, lettuce and mesclun mixes, and tomatoes which provided us with great yields throughout the season. Overall, approximately 50 pounds of produce were donated to the Queen’s Galley from the 8’ x 8’ space. The trellis on the north end of the garden help peas and cucumbers grow vertically and increased the garden’s productivity. Garden manager Jesica Clark and volunteer Renee Vaughn had a fun time maintaining the space with the help of several other harvest volunteers in the fall. The garden was also host to a couple of workshops on how to plan and plant a square foot garden.

Next year the garden will again be planted square foot style, but with different crops highlighted, including medicinal herbs and flowers. Mrs. Clark also hopes to grow garlic from “seed cloves” which are actually cloves from large, well formed heads of garlic. The garlic cloves are planted in the fall to ensure proper growth the next year. We will be a small garlic planting and info session at the garden on Saturday, November 6th at 3pm”.

The Kingston Land Trust Organizes Community Beautification/Garden Project on Yeomans Street in Ponckhockie

The Kingston Land Trust organizes community meeting to discuss a beautification and garden project on Yeomans Street in Ponckhockie in Kingston, NY.

All citizens living in the vicinity of Yeomans Street are encouraged to attend on Tuesday, October 19th at 5:30pm.

Kingston, NY –  The Kingston Land Trust, an urban trust located in the city of Kingston, is organizing a community meeting to discuss a 2011 spring clean-up, beautification and garden project for Yeomans Street in Ponckhockie. All citizens who live nearby  are encouraged to attend.

“One of our primary goals at the Kingston Land Trust as we acquire parcels to protect and preserve is to reach out to involve the  neighborhood that surround them.” Rebecca Martin, Executive Director of the Kingston Land Trust explains. “Creating a shared beautification and garden project is an intimate way to connect the people to their immediate outdoor open spaces”.

Those wishing to attend are asked to meet street side at 65 Gill Street on Tuesday, October 19th at 5:30pm.

For more information, contact Rebecca Martin, Executive Director of the Kingston Land Trust at 845/877-LAND (5263) or email

Signage Approved for the Mt. Zion African-American Burial Ground in Kingston

Bill Forte shows off the the sign sponsored by the Veterans Association of Kingston. Photo Credit: Linda Archer

We are pleased to share this photograph of the new sign that will be placed at the Mt. Zion African-American Burial Ground on South Wall Street in Kingston.

That’s Bill Forte from the Veterans Association of Kingston at last nights Historic Landmarks Commission meeting, where it unanimously passed.

With the formation of a Black History Committee through the Kingston Land Trust and all of its new partnerships that include the AME Zion Church of Kingston, the Veterans Association of Kingston, Pointe of Praise Church, the Everett Hodge Center, Terri Gittens (who is the new coordinator of the committee), city and county Historians, residents and  others, this partially forgotten cemetery is now getting its due.

Already a historic landmark in the city of Kingston, an effort is underway for it (along with the AME Zion Church of Kingston with which it is affiliated) to be recognized by the State of New York in the same fashion.

Look for a re-dedication ceremony of this site and much more on the Black History Committee’s recent progress in 2011.

For more on the African-American Cemeteries in the city of Kingston, visit this LINK

The Kingston Land Trust’s Black History Committee meets on the first Monday of each month at 6:00pm at the Kingston Land Trust offices, 280 Wall Street (2nd Floor) in Kingston, NY.

The Kingston Land Trust Awarded Mini-Grant for Kids Care Week, 2010

The Kingston Land Trust was awarded a mini-grant for the Kids Care Week 2010 “Make Your Mark on the World: go the Extra Mile” service project.

The award will be used for the Everett Hodge Center Children’s Garden, where the children will to do a clean-up and create a work plan for next year.  Kingston Garden Coalition member and organic farmer Jesica Pascual will be on hand to assist the children.

The project, though implemented during the Kids Care Week, will take place on Friday, October 29th at 5:00pm at the Everett Hodge Center at 15-21 Franklin Street in Kingston. All are invited to attend.

For more on this and other Kingston Land Trust activities, contact Rebecca Martin, Executive Director at 845/877-5263 or email