The Utah State University Extension Service hosted a "Healthy Family Fun" event using our garden as the venue. In July, families met four evenings to learn about healthy cooking. They cooked together and enjoyed outdoor family games. The 4-H for Children and LINC (Life-Skills and Individual Needs Center) organizations in our community also participated in gardening at our site this season. Our Kid's Club had a successful season, doing scientific-based horticultural fun activities such as growing a worm farm, dissecting beans, and the all-time favorite activity of painting garden rocks.
What challenges did or does your project face?
Volunteer help from the gardeners and compliance with weeding and harvest expectations. Even though the seasonal contract gardeners agree to includes expected volunteer hours, many don't respond to calls for help or garden social activities. Some garden beds don't get harvested in a timely manner and produce is wasted.
How are you working to overcome them?
Seasonal orientation where garden policies are reviewed will continue to be the norm but with added emphasis on compliance with rules. Although there were a few non-compliant gardeners, this season was less problematic than the prior two seasons.
What did you or your project learn this season that might be useful to others as well?
We had some "super-high" garden beds donated that were used for some folks who could not bend to care for crops in our traditional raised beds. The design was rickety and did not work well with our drip system. Going forward, we have a new design in mind for improved super-high beds. The goal is to raise funds to purchase materials needed to put in 60 feet of the new improved super-high bed next spring.