Thank you Sunnyside for the tour of your facility! Manna Culinary Arts students ventured into the world of meat processing on April 19th. Students followed live hogs through the process that ultimately turns them into bacon. Even though students did not raise a hog or develop a relationship with them, they were able to view the stark moment of death. The animals are moved through a series of fences developed by Dr. Temple Grandin, a famous advocate for humane kill floors. The hogs are then hung and butchered. Students were able to explore careers within the butchering industry and a couple even took home job applications. The Manna Culinary Arts Program provides assistance with filling out applications and creating resumes. The next batch of culinary students will start in the late summer and will be integrated into the Manna Garden through workshops, harvesting, and farm to table meals!
Right when you thought we couldn't get more plants packed into our Manna Garden....
We've been growing the garden figuratively and literally. In addition to creating 9 new hillside terraces, we literally planted over 50 flats of basil, tomatoes, onions, lettuce, bok choy, napa cabbage, tomatoes, peppers, kale, chard, parsley, and cucumbers! We've been so busy, we haven't blogged all spring!
Our NCCC crew, hailing from all over the United States, came to our assistance in building the 9 new stone terraced beds in the hillside orchard. We're working hard to expand the garden growing spaces within our one acre fence. The 9 plots will be cycled into the Manna Community Garden Plots as interest grows over the next year.
Our community at the Manna Garden is growing as more clients become involved in the garden through the brand *NEW* Community Garden Plots!!!! Manna clients were chosen through an application process to be our first pilot community gardeners. 6 of the 9 plots were dished out to clients while the other 3 are being tended by veterans from the VOA sheltor. This "garden therapy" is providing a time for vets suffering from PTSD to get their hands in the dirt and connect with each other through gardening! We also have some veterans currently helping out at our regularly scheduled Wednesday Workdays.
Photo Credit: Amy Johnston
Last Friday marked the end of the Durango 9-R School District year. This means that all in-class & afterschool programs have officially ended!! Here at The Garden Project, we had quite a busy spring school semester. Dirt Club, Farmer Days, Junior Master Gardeners, and our electives course at The Juniper School have all come to a close.Read more
The Garden Project recently held a garden giveaway with a grant through the Moniker Foundation. The winner was Southern Ute Peaceful Spirit in Ignacio, which provides addiction treatment services and inpatient rehabilitation.Read more
Kelle Bruno has spent years doing farm and garden work with youth in Southwest Colorado. These days she teaches 1st and 2nd grade, along with gardening, at a charter school in Pagosa Springs, but back around 2010 she was getting her hands dirty in the Needham Elementary School GardenRead more
The Garden Project of SW Colorado, The Moniker Foundation, and Paonia Soil Co. are teaming up to provide one lucky school or organization in La Plata County, CO with nine Smart Pod gardening totes, and the tools, supplies, hands-on support, and training to grow their own food.
Schools and organizations who serve individuals and families in need, that are interested in the opportunity to start a garden and who have the ability to impact and inspire others to do the same, are encouraged to apply.
To increase access to fresh food and gardens and to encourage more locally grown food in our community.Read more
It’s been twenty years since Shari Fitzgerald was assigned a project in her senior sociology class at Fort Lewis College. While her classmates spent the semester working closely with local nonprofits and organizations, Fitzgerald took a different approach. She created her own.
What would later turn into the The Garden Project of Southwest Colorado started as Greens and Things, an organization that provided at-risk youth with garden therapy. At the time, Fitzgerald was working with the same populations through other local organizations. It was then she noticed the kids she was working with responded well to being outdoors and getting their hands in the dirt.Read more
The 2018 Volunteer Opportunities flyer is out! This is a quick overview of the opportunities we have to offer.Read more
This winter, our school garden educators have been teaching a few different lessons of our inaugural Junior Master Gardener lessons. These lessons, taught in conjunction with CSU Extension 4-H Agent Greg Felson, are a complete success! Since the 2nd grade students of Needham Elementary, Animas Valley Elementary, and Fort Lewis Mesa Elementary have gotten back from Winter Break, they have learned all about vermicomposting, Citizen Science, and plant needs!Read more