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Group Offers Garden Space And Knowledge

By Staff | Apr 2, 2014

Community gardens and raised beds such as these pictured are a key part in Grow Local, Go Local’s goals to educate, grow, and market locally grown and raised food.

With the arrival of warmer weather and sunshine comes increased activity in the garden.

Grow Local, Go Local is ready to help facilitate local gardening in many ways.

Don’t think you have a place to grow your own food? Think again. Grow Local, Go Local (GLGL) has community gardens available for your use-for free. The large garden area between the Wetzel County 911/EMS buildings and Wetzel County Hospital offers 4,800 square feet-enough for many gardeners. And GLGL is expanding their community gardens in Paden City and Pine Grove.

Tom Myslinsky of GLGL said the community gardens have been very successful. “With some families being experienced gardeners and others not, the education exchange of gardening skills was ongoing during the full gardening season (last year),” he said. “The word ‘community’ exemplified the feelings of the gardening families.

All of the community gardens include raised beds-28 in all. Four of those are not technically at a community garden, but at the Head Start in Jacksonburg. There are also container gardens at the senior centers in New Martinsville, Paden City, and Pine Grove as well as the roadside park in Burton.

Myslinsky says raised beds have a few advantages: they are less susceptible to weeds, they don’t have to be concerned about the quality of the soil (although the dirt at all of the community gardens has been tested and deemed safe for growing), and the raised beds are more accessible.

Just because a space for growing is available doesn’t necessarily mean a novice, or even experienced, grower will be successful. That is why Grow Local, Go Local is sponsoring gardening workshops on six different topics during this year’s growing season: planning and planting, garden maintenance, healthy heart cooking, food preparation, cold weather gardening, and off season preparation. Each workshop will be held in both New Martinsville at West Virginia Northern Community College and the Shortline area with a location to be announced.

The first of the series is on planning and planting on April 15, 6-8:30 p.m., in Room 207 at WVNCC. The presenter will be Jenny Totten of West Virginia University Extension in Huntington.

Presenters for the other workshops will be from WVU Extension, Marshall County Master Gardeners, and Tyler Consolidated High School Vo-Ag Department.

Grow Local, Go Local has many more exciting projects and news that will be ongoing throughout the year. “It’s baffling to me that we’re doing what we’re doing as fast as we’re doing it,” said Myslinsky.

For more information on Grow Local, Go Local, visit their website at growlocalgolocal.org and like them on Facebook. You may also call 304-455-1655.