There is plenty of color mixed in with the green at the Community Garden, located behind the First United Methodist Church.

The Commerce Community Garden is in full swing this summer, and members of the public will be afforded an opportunity to learn a new skill.

First announced in February, the Community Garden, located on land just west of the First United Methodist Church, has seen plenty of activity in the past few months. The garden was first conceived in 2008, but interest waned over time, and the area became overgrown. Since the announcement of a renewed effort to support the garden, the area has been cleaned and cleared of brush and weeds, and as of Monday, all 45 plots were being used by a group of roughly a dozen people.

Dr. Royce Lee serves as Manager of the Community Garden. Lee is the former Department Head for the Department of Biology at Texas A&M University-Commerce. He says that there is still some work to be done, but the area can be “a real treasure in the community” if it is continually taken care of. Lee also said that expansion may be a possibility with sustained involvement.

Something related to the garden, but not necessarily tied to it, is a pair of workshops being put on in a joint effort between the Commerce Community Action Program and the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension office.

The first workshop, being held on July 22 from 9 a.m. to noon, will focus on canning and freezing fresh food taken from a garden. The second workshop on Aug. 5 from 9 a.m. to noon will focus on meal preparation. Both meetings will be held at the Commerce First United Methodist Church on Highway 24 and are free and open to the general public.

Dr. Bob Johnson with C-CAP stated that pre-registration is required. Registration for the July 22 workshop is required by July 14 and registration for Aug. 5 is required by July 21. Call Dr. Johnson at 903-468-2659 to register.

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