We encourage & assist folks to grow food for self and neighbor

Friday, September 30, 2011

Community Garden Tour, 9-11:30am, Sat, Oct 22nd

Community Garden Tour
Saturday, Oct 22nd, 2011
9-11:30am (Registration, gathering at 8:45am)
Questions?
Contact Nathan Ballentine, maninoveralls@gmail.com, (850) 322-0749

Gather at Second Harvest. Carpooling encouraged in order to encourage exchange and collaboration amongst community gardeners and activists. We hope to provide transportation to the first 25 people for the same reason.

Second Harvest Youth Food Garden 9am-9:30
Located 110 Four Points Way just off S. Adams street.  Raised bed vegetable gardens built and maintained by the YELDA, Youth Empowerment Leadership Development Academy.  Food distributed via food bank.

FAMU Community Garden, St John’s Missionary Church’s plot  9:45 – 10:15am
 Located on Orange Ave between Adams and Wanish Way. The FAMU community garden is the oldest community garden in the Tallahassee area, founded in 1974.  St. John’s plot—consisting of 15 4x8’ raised beds— is the newest church garden in the area.

Fort Braden Community Garden – 11-11:30am
 Fort Braden Community Garden is located west of Tallahassee off Highway 20 behind the Fort Braden Library.  This community garden is on an old farm site that is owned by Leon County.  The county generously provided the fencing and water spigots to each site.  The garden contains 40 plots for lease on an annual basis.  The garden also has a fruit orchard, bee hives, blue bird and purple martin and bat houses.  Gardeners meet monthly for workdays on the garden common areas and to learn and share with each other.  Some of the excess produce is donated to area organizations.  See the website for additional information: http://www.fortbradengarden.com/

Saturday, September 17, 2011

'Tis the Season

It's that time of year: Folks ask me what I've been up to, and my consistent response is: "Gardens, gardens, gardens." Whether building and planting raised beds for folks who purchased Future Garden Coupons or top-dressing and replanting with repeat customers, it's a wonderful whirlwind of business and plant growth. Here's a couple few pictures from the past week:

Wendell, Nathan, and Bill - Piney Z farm boys
Claudia and Tina after replanting their three raised beds.
Accenting Kathy's existing garden with a couple raised beds down the middle.
Going back Monday to spruce up and plant.
Friday morning I stopped by FBMC Benefits Management where-- this past spring-- I installed their company wellness garden.  They started with four 4x4s, and now have requested I double their bed space by adding four more 4x4s, which they plan to plant, tend and harvest in order to donate to a food pantry through AmpleHarvest.org.  Below are the flags plotting out their new beds going in Tuesday before our Wednesday Fall Planting Workshop.

During my visit, Glenda in Marketing, who coordinates their Wellness Program, showed me their snazzy new Wellness Program video that highlights their garden:



Signing off to go water my seedlings.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The story of last Friday

Last Friday I oversaw a September 11th memorial service project building, filling, and planting garden buckets for shut-in seniors-- so even those who can't bend too well, don't have much space, etc can grow a few vegetables to improve their diet.  Volunteer Leon coordinated the entirety of the event that involved a memorial service plus two other service projects: emergency preparedness buckets and "Wow" care packages for troops in Iraq.









Saturday, September 3, 2011

Mention in Natural Awakenings August 2011

"More Community Gardens for our Community"
Natural Awakenings, August 2011
Coming Fall 2011, SouthWood will have a Community Garden ready for planting. The idea, originally spearheaded by Brian Ramos, SW Cub Scout leader in collaboration with Nathan Ballentine, the Man in Overalls of Tallahassee Food Gardens, has grown to include many Southwood neighbors combining their talents and ideas to make it a reality. The effort is rooted in a desire to enrich the community, teach kids where their food comes from, and provide families with healthy, fresh produce year-round.

The Southwood Community Garden (SWCG); will also be a beautiful destination point for the neighborhood with 52 all-organic raised-bed gardens, butterfly garden, white picket fence, grape arbor, picnic benches and more. Residents and visitors would be welcome to stroll through the garden.

Along with providing a space for people to grow their own produce and flowers, the SWCG will host a few learning seminars with Nathan Ballentine. For those new to gardening... (read the rest on Natural Awakenings Online, scroll to page 6.)

"Kate Sullivan Garden Moves to Phase Two" - Tallahassee Democrat Chronicle, 9/1/2011

"Kate Sullivan Garden Moves to Phase Two"
Kelley Des Marais (special to the Chronicle)

After months of planning by teachers, parents, school board members, Kate Sullivan Elementary School Garden Committee proudly announces the completion of phase one of the Community School Garden, completed on Aug. 19th.

The finished garden is approximately 150 square feet including a spigot and three raised garden beds.  The garden eventually will include compost and vermiculture bins, bench seating and enough raised beds for each grade level to create its own garden.  The garden will be fore students as well as the community and is accessible to people with disabilities.  This space will serve as an outdoor classroom with curriculum-based activities that meet Florida state-wide learning benchmarks in most categories including math, sciennce, language and art.  Along with the Department of Education, the garden committee developed a comprehensive guide for teachers based on Gardening for Grades, written by Florida Agriculture in the Classroom, Inc.  In addition, our Nathan Ballentine with Tallahassee Food Gardens helped guide the garden committee in the creation of a living educational space.  It is hoped that community-based projects like this one will provide an inspiration for other schools and show teachers how their work can provide students with hands-on learning while experiencing the fun of the outdoors.  Betton Hills Neighborhood Association, Kate Sullivan PTA, Mad Dog Construction, Gramlings, Turkey Hill Farm, and Native Nurseries generously provided funding for this project.

If you are interested in becoming a part of this exciting new project, please contact the garden coordinator, Kelley Des Marais at katesullivangarden@gmail.com.



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