Community Garden Rules and Guidelines Agreement 


  1. Hours: Garden is open from dawn to dusk, 7 days per week. Please close the gates of the garden when you enter and exit. 
  2. All gardeners must sign “Community Garden Rules and Guidelines Agreement.”
  3. Plots are reviewed each winter, with notification of your right to a plot by March 1st. 
  4. Preference for plots will be given to residents of the towns of Buckland and Shelburne. 5. One plot per household, unless empty plots are available. 
  5. A non refundable fee of $50/year is assessed to cover water and maintenance expenses. The annual fee will be due by April 1st yearly. Any plot with an unpaid fee by that date will be offered to others on the waitlist. Anyone unable to afford the annual fee should make a request in writing for sliding scale to the SFLA board. 
  6. Ensure contact information is current, including address, phone number and email address. Garden registration confirmation will be sent out by email. 
  7. Park in the designated parking area near the entrance to the land. Do not block the access road known as “Wilde Way.” 
  8. Gardeners may not assign or otherwise transfer rights to a plot to others. As plots become available, they will be assigned from the waitlist. 
  9. Friends and family members are permitted in the garden, under the supervision of the assigned gardener and must adhere to all garden rules. 
  10. Gardeners may not play music at high volume. 
  11. All gardeners must comply with the bylaws of the Salmon Falls Land Association which strictly prohibits firearms on the property. 
  12. No open flames, tobacco, alcohol, or illegal substances in the garden. We want a wholesome, family oriented environment appropriate for all ages. 
  13. Pets inclined to dig, trample or defecate in others plots will not be allowed in the garden. 
  14. No beekeeping allowed within the community garden. 
  15. Any trash carried into the garden should be carried out. 
  16. Any threatening or abusive behavior towards other gardeners will not be permitted. 


  1. Structures should not cross into, or shade, another plot. Beds may not rise more than 18”    above the path. Trees or tall plants that will shade your neighbors plot are not permitted. 
  2. No permanent structures permitted (i.e. concrete, bricks, mortar). If wooden raised beds are desired, the wood material must be supplied by the gardener. 
  3. To protect the town’s water supply and other gardeners organic vegetables, the use of any non-organic chemicals including fertilizers, herbicide, pesticides, and fungicides is prohibited and use of such will result in forfeit of your plot. 
  4. Wood chips will be provided to cover walkways. Newspaper or cardboard under wood chips is the recommended method for additional weed suppression.
  5. Items not permitted in the plots or surrounding paths: Carpet, impermeable plastics, or household fabrics may not be used as weed control. Gravel material may not be used on walkways. Stepping stones permitted. 
  6. Brambles such as raspberries, blackberries, or similar invasive, thorny plants should not be planted in the community garden. 
  7. Perennials may be planted at your own risk, understanding that individual plots are not owned, but lent to each gardener for a finite period of time. 


  1. Aisles and paths surrounding your plot should be free and clear of weeds, trash, and other materials to ensure that the common paths are passable by others. 
  2. Diseased plants should be bagged and disposed as trash in the town’s waste disposal facility.
  3. Plant material generated from active gardening should be disposed of at the designated compost sites on the land. 
  4. Keep the garden area generally neatly maintained out of respect for your garden neighbors.
  5. Tools: Gardeners should generally provide their own tools, though some SFLA tools will be available for general use. If borrowing the tools available in the common garden shed (to be used in the SFLA garden only), you are expected to return them to their storage spot when you’re done. If you’d like to leave your own tools in the shed for others to share, please label them clearly if you’d like them back at the end of the season. 


  1. Municipal water will be provided and subject to any water restrictions or bans as required by the DPW. 
  2. Be conscious of wasteful water use, and alert someone if you notice severe leaks in hoses or hand sprayers. 
  3. No unattended watering is permitted, including the use of timers. 
  4. Please make sure the hose is turned off at the source when you leave the garden. 

HARVEST: Feel free to share the fruits of your labor with others, but never harvest from another’s plot without their permission. If you will be away during the harvest, please notify someone so that your harvest can be shared or donated to the local senior center instead of rotting in the garden. 

WORKDAY COMMITMENT: All gardeners are expected to participate in at least 2 of the 4 work days per year. This will be a chance to share in garden projects to maintain compost bins, mulch pathways between plots, clear garden borders, etc. 

EVENTS: All gardeners are encouraged to participate in community events and potlucks happening throughout the year to build community friendships and spirit! 


  1. If garden rules are ignored, or a plot inappropriately maintained your plot will be forfeited. 
  2. When a complaint has been filed or a violation occurs, the gardener will be notified in writing and a deadline set to fix the problem. If not fixed, a second warning will be communicated in writing with a final deadline set for fixing the problem, after which the plot will be forfeited.
  3. If there is no evidence of active gardening by June 1st, the gardener will be contacted. If there is no response within 2 weeks, the plot will be considered forfeited. 
  4. If a plot is forfeited, the gardener will have one week to dispose of materials and personal items left in the garden, after which they will be removed/discarded. 
  5. In case of hardship, illness, unplanned emergency or personal issues that prevent a gardener from tending their plot or complying with garden rules, the gardener must notify a member of SFLA. Maximum accommodation for not tending to the responsibilities of your garden plot is one growing season. 
  6. If a plot becomes available, existing gardeners in good standing will have the option to switch plots. If more than one gardener would like the plot in question, it will be assigned by lottery. 

Please notify an SFLA member if you witness disrespectful or unlawful behavior in the garden so that the SFLA can maintain a healthy and safe community for all. Compliance with rules and regulations will ensure that the garden grows and succeeds. 

To confirm your plot: Please sign a copy of this agreement, and return it to the Shelburne Falls Community Garden via mail at 12 Wilde Rd, Shelburne Falls, MA 01370, with your check. Checks should be made payable to “Salmon Falls Land Association” with ‘Community Garden’ on the memo line. The agreement will be signed by a community member and returned to you for your records. 

I understand that the Salmon Falls Land Association is not responsible for my actions. I release the Salmon Falls Land Association from any liability damage, loss or claim that occurs in connection with use of the SFLA Community Garden by me or my guests, as I am the sole person responsible for my garden plot. 

Signed on __________________ (date) 

Gardener ______________________________________________________ Plot number ________ 


Link to printable form below:

Community Garden Rules and Regulations