2013 Spring Garden Application Period Over
We have now closed our application period for the spring season. If you are interested in partnering with the Kitchen Garden Project to grow more of your own food and build neighborhood food solutions, we’d love to support you! Here are some options:
- Learn how to build your own garden! Follow our events website to see when we will be building gardens in your neighborhood, and sign up to join us on the garden builds. No previous experience required. Generally, we will be building gardens as follows…March: Olympia and Tumwater. April: Lacey and South Thurston County. May: Mason County.
- Stay in touch for the fall garden build season! Sign up for our e-newsletter here.
- Buy low-cost vegetable starts from us in March and April.
- Attend GRuB gardening and cooking workshops. We will be offering 1-2 workshops every month from March through November, often in multiple regions. Check them out on our calendar here!
How does the Kitchen Garden Project Work?
GRuB’s Kitchen Garden Project (KGP) partners with individuals, families and organizations to build backyard vegetable gardens. Our goal is to connect low-income people in Thurston and Mason Counties with the sustainable food movement by providing access to the knowledge and resources needed to grow fresh, healthy and culturally appropriate foods. KGP gardeners receive: a raised bed (above ground) or double dug garden (in-ground), seeds, starts and cover crops, free access to our extensive gardening workshop series and a connection to the greater gardening community. Applying for a KGP garden is a two step process that includes an application and an orientation meeting.
What Do We Expect Of Our Gardeners?
- Gardeners are expected to assist GRuB staff and volunteers on the build day. Exceptions may be made for those with physical limitations or for those with work conflicts.
- Gardeners are expected to attend at least 2 GRuB workshops
- Gardeners are expected to stay in touch with the KGP through the duration of the growing season. This means responding to KGP calls and/or emails (depending on preference) within 2-3 days, unless sick or traveling.
- Gardeners are expected to fill out a Contribution Form and make a commitment to give back. This could take the form of volunteering, material donation, or financial contribution (see below). KGP gardeners choose what kind of contribution makes sense for them. This includes making a commitment to maintain your garden- the KGP understands how much work goes into keeping a garden weed free, watered and healthy! For a successful food garden you can expect to spend 1-3 hours in the garden per week, depending on the season.
Are KGP Gardens Free?
We believe that access to fresh, healthy, and culturally appropriate food is a basic human right and we strive to provide gardens to low-income people at a minimal cost. KGP gardens are highly subsidized by grants and donations. However, gardeners are expected to contribute to the construction of their garden. We work with applicants on a case by case basis to ensure that the contribution is not a burden. Please contact us for details.
Double Dug or Raised bed – What’s the best option?
A double dug bed allows a gardener to create a space that best fits their yard. By digging a beds into the existing landscape, we create a garden that is the size and shape you want. Double digging aerates the deeper layers of your garden’s soil. This allows your plants to grow bigger and more vigorously because they have room for their roots! It also improves drainage greatly, which is very important for healthy plants. The KGP typically creates 100 square feet of garden using this method.
A raised bed garden is constructed from 2″ by 6″ untreated fir. Three 4′ by 8′ frames are filled with an organic garden soil and compost mix. A trellis capable of supporting tomatoes, peas or beans is attached to one of the beds. Raised beds are excellent choices for people with mobility issues. The 4′ by 8′ frames can be stacked to raise the bed to a height that can be managed by those with limited mobility. Raised beds typically last 6 to 8 seasons in the Northwest.
Kitchen Garden Project Staff help determine which option will be best for your backyard situation.