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Local Heroes: Ann Arbor Project Grow

One of the local non-profit organizations that reinforces my sense of civic pride is Ann Arbor’s Project Grow. The mission of Project Grow Community Gardens is to provide “the space, education, and inspiration to make organic gardening accessible to all.” Project Grow has 14 community garden sites around Ann Arbor; residents can sign up for gardening space to grow their own produce. These community gardens are popular! Twelve of their sites are now filled up for the season as of mid-May.

In addition to actual gardening plots, Project Grow offers classes to the community in a range of topics and settings. Recent classes have included Organic Gardening, Enjoying and Preserving Heirloom Vegetables, Potato Seeds and Seed Potatoes, and Raising Heirloom Tomatoes and Peppers Organically. Topics have also covered raising chickens, an introduction to composting, and beekeeping. Project Grow also offers an Organic Gardener Certification Program in partnership with the Washtenaw Community College.

Project Grow hosts other events too, like their upcoming annual Plant Sale. The plant sale will be held in front of the People’s Food Co-op, on 216 N. 4th Avenue, in Ann Arbor, across from the Ann Arbor Farmer’s Market on:
Saturday, May 15th, from 8am – 2pm
Sunday, May 16th, from 8am – 1pm
Saturday, May 22nd, from 8am – 2pm.

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ll be on the lookout for interesting varieties of heirloom tomatoes.

We’re participating in another one of their sponsored events, The Potato Pledge, and I’ll be posting about that soon!

Project Grow also works hard to make gardening opportunities available to everyone in the community. They maintain two Discovery Gardens at the Leslie Science and Nature Center that offer special gardening programs for children, seniors and those with disabilities. Wonder Sprouts has organic gardening experiences for children. The Wise Roots program provides raised gardening beds for older adults to garden in an intergenerational setting. Their Easy Access program offers specially designed raised garden beds with accessible pathways for the wheel chair-bound gardener. The Discovery Garden located is suited for low-vision or no-vision gardeners.

What else is great about Project Grow? Their website has a lot of information about organic gardening as well as an informative blog. I was so touched the first time I saw the 20minutegarden on their bloglist! The internet is a great spot for finding kindred spirits in gardening. I’m proud of the work Project Grow does in my corner of the world.

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